Leading Healthcare with Healthcare Leaders
Leading Healthcare with Healthcare Leaders


"The need to prepare for future shifts in the way healthcare needs to be delivered, and developing a strategy to become an accountable care organization, were mission critical."


After completing a major strategic planning initiative, Saint Francis Care, a regional referral center and major teaching hospital in Hartford, Connecticut, identified a gap in their leadership capabilities: the team did not include a senior physician executive focused on leading physician integration and alignment for the future.

According to Chris Dadlez, Saint Francis Care President and Chief Executive Officer, "The need to prepare for future shifts in the way healthcare needs to be delivered, and developing a strategy to become an accountable care organization, were mission critical."

Although the position was not fully designed, Dadlez felt strongly that conducting a national search was required to find the right candidate for this progressive position.

Gallagher MSA Search was selected to conduct the search for Saint Francis Care. Managing Director & Senior Advisor Jane Groves had a strong track record with the organization and with Mr. Dadlez, whom Jane had placed at Saint Francis Care seven years prior. Dadlez felt Gallagher MSA Search and Jane had the collective expertise to play a crucial role in identifying and assessing A-list candidates. "I had no doubt that Jane would work closelywith me and our strategy consultant to develop a candidate profile that would clearly articulate our vision and our needs. From years of working with Jane, I also knew that she would accurately represent Saint Francis Care to candidates and the candidates to us. She would identify not only the skill sets, but the right cultural and personal fit that is so important, yet not always the focus of other search firms," said Dadlez.

Working with the strategic consultant and Dadlez, Groves suggested that she regularly communicate the types of candidates she was speaking with and discuss the questions that arose through her networking for candidates for the position. Groves states that the openness and accessibility of the team — particularly that of Dadlez — from the start to finish of the search was a major factor in attracting and hiring an extraordinary candidate.

This unique search required innovative thinking. Ms. Groves recommended that she conduct personal interviews in Hartford with candidates who she considered to have high potential. During this visit, candidates would also participate in a dinner meeting with Mr. Dadlez, which Groves would attend. Both the candidates and the client appreciated the opportunity to spend time in a non-interview format, to discuss Dadlez's vision for the position and allow candidates to add their input and insights into designing the position for ultimate success. "Jane only brought candidates in who met the mark, and I was able to use the dinner meetings/conversations to further refine my thinking about the position. Jane was able to further evaluate the candidates, and the candidates had the advantage of being able to meet directly with me earlier in the process, so it worked all the way around," states Dadlez.

The chosen candidate for the position, Arthur DeTore, MD, MBA, also felt that this unique approach provided an excellent outcome.

According to DeTore, "Jane added additional value with her ability to first understand, and then communicate the vision of what Chris Dadlez was truly looking for. She facilitated my access to both her client (Chris Dadlez) and their strategic consultant very early in the search process, which I found highly unusual for a search firm. It is one of the factors that kept me engaged in the search process and heightened my interest in the position. Jane stayed actively involved in every stage of the search, and I depended upon her advice and point of view through receipt of the offer and acceptance. I knew that she was skillfully representing both my best interest and that of Saint Francis Care."

The search closed ahead of schedule with a candidate who received unanimous support from the client Search Committee.

A year later, the client states that Dr. DeTore has exceeded all expectations and has accomplished more in twelve months than the organization thought possible.

Dadlez says, "Art has been a great fit in our organization, engaging positively and redesigning our business model to move us in the right direction for the future. Other organizations are already calling us about ACOs, asking Art to be a guest lecturer. It is just the beginning of opportunities that lie ahead for us."

With the unique collaboration between Saint Francis Care and Gallagher MSA Search to define and develop this position, Dr. DeTore was given a strong sense of the organization early in the search, which allowed him to hit the ground running.

"I was impressed that a lot of the building blocks had been put in place. It was the next stage of true clinical integration that I was brought in to lead, and I have felt strong support at all levels in moving us forward through what I consider to be transformational change in our business model toward population health management," states DeTore.

Recently, Gallagher MSA Search has partnered with the organization to conduct two additional placements for senior management positions. Candidate feedback consistently includes accolades for the progressive nature of the organization and the inclusion of a dynamic physician leader as part of the executive team.

This strategic realignment and approach to leadership has allowed for the recruitment other similarly skilled and dynamic leaders.

Gallagher MSA Search, a division of Gallagher Benefit Services, Inc., has a rich history spanning more than 40 years of helping organizations fill mission-critical executive roles with the right talent. With a thorough understanding of healthcare organizations and a customized approach to sourcing and selecting healthcare executive candidates, Gallagher MSA Search combines comprehensive interview and assessment process with unique insights gained from years of search consulting success and hospital administration experience.

Because there is so much at stake when selecting mission-critical executives, we conduct the most thorough interview and assessment process to select your executive candidates—an exclusive, in-depth system to reduce the margin for error and ensure there will be no surprises—and combine it with unique insights that can only be gained from years of search consulting success and hospital administration experience. Our database of our clients with access to an extremely valuable resource unavailable anywhere else.

The result: our clients have found the right CEO in our first slate presentation, 100% of the time.

As a part of Gallagher Benefit Services, Inc., our clients have access to an array of healthcare leadership and management services, helping maximize their organization's performance today and through coming changes.

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