The May 1 departure of interim CEO Ginny Razo has the Tahoe Forest Hospital District Board of Directors scrambling. They need to find an interim replacement for her, as well as a permanent CEO and a COO. Additionally, the board is considering putting out a request for proposals for a new district counsel, replacing Steve Gross. This could signal big changes at the district, which has had a tumultuous nine months.

Razo surprised the board and community on March 30 by announcing that after two months she was resigning as interim CEO to become CEO at Curry Health Network in Oregon. Board members told Moonshine Ink they were caught off guard by her announcement, but according to minutes from a Nov. 19 meeting of the Curry Health Network board, 30 applicants were narrowed to a field of seven for Skype interviews, with three candidates invited for on-site interviews in December. Razo began as Tahoe Forest’s interim CEO on Jan. 28 but failed to mention that she had applied elsewhere.

Minutes from another Curry Health Network board meeting on March 25 noted that Razo had visited the area the week prior. The CHN board voted Friday, March 27 to give Razo the position, and she announced her departure to TFH staff on Monday, March 30. According to a CHN press release, Razo is scheduled to begin her new job May 5.

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“There were many highly qualified individuals interested, and after a comprehensive selection process lasting several months, the board unanimously selected Ginny as the best candidate,” stated Curry Health District Board Chair Gary Anderson in the release.

Razo became interim CEO in January after the Tahoe Forest board decided not to renew former CEO Bob Schapper’s contract. They approved an 18-month contract for Razo that included $251,901 in pay and a $36,016 education forgiveness loan. She was previously COO for seven years and chief of ancillary services for five years at Tahoe Forest Hospital. Razo has not spoken to the local press since she announced her departure.

“While my husband Richard and I were visiting Gold Beach, the sense of community pride and excitement about the future of CHN was palpable,” Razo said in the CHN press release about the southern Oregon community. “Our family is so excited to be joining the community and organization in May.”

Moving Forward

With just a month to find Razo’s replacement, the board interviewed three search firms April 2, but decided to begin with an internal search for the interim CEO position to save costs on using a firm. The board is seeking applications from current Tahoe Forest Hospital staff members and will hold interviews and select someone at a special board meeting on April 13. If no attractive candidates are found, the board said they will work with a search firm.

If an interim CEO is not selected by May 1, CFO Crystal Betts will take over the position by default, though she indicated at the board meeting that she was not interested in the position.

“I don’t want to delay the process too long,” Betts told the board.

After the interim position is filled, the board will focus on looking for a permanent CEO, which could take up to six months. The board has talked about using one of the recruitment firms for a national search for the permanent position and indicated they want some “breathing room” before finding a permanent leader, since the past few months have been challenging.

“I don’t think I’ve seen a six months like this,” Dr. Chris Arth told the board. “The unsettlement in the community was bad enough. I don’t want to see it a second time. Be as transparent and open as possible … Keep upheaval to a minimum.”

The Tahoe Forest Hospital Board of Directors will hold a special board meeting Monday, April 13 to discuss the interim CEO position. Time and place are TBA. For more information, visit tfhd.com.

~ For more information on Tahoe Forest Hospital’s previous CEO, Bob Schapper, read Moonshine Ink’s investigative report, New Revelations, on moonshineink.com.

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  • Kara Fox

    When she’s not writing or editing the news section for Moonshine Ink, Kara Fox can be seen hiking in the spring, paddle boarding in the summer, mushroom hunting in the fall, snowshoeing in the winter, and hanging out with her 7-year-old son year-round.

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