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February 10, 2014

Somerset Hospital CEO abruptly resigns

SOMERSET — Ronald M. Park Jr. has resigned as president and chief executive officer for Somerset Hospital after only 13 months in the top leadership position.

The abrupt resignation was accepted during a 90-minute meeting of the hospital boards this evening.

Craig Saylor was immediately named interim CEO for the hospital and Andrew Rush was named interim CEO for Somerset Health Services Inc.

Rumors that Park would be leaving the position surfaced late last week and may have been cemented during a gathering of hospital leaders this morning.

Hospital spokeswoman Michele Beener would not confirm that board members were meeting this morning, but had The Tribune-Democrat reporter wait in the hospital lobby for several hours before announcing there would be no information released until after the 5 p.m. board meeting.

“I am not allowed to leave any reporters unattended today,” she said.

There was no explanation provided for Park's sudden departure, which was remarkable in contrast to his appointment in January 2013.

In the release, hospital board Chairman Bruce Shipley said only, “I'd like to thank Ron for his years of service to Somerset Hospital. We certainly wish him the best.

“As we look forward, the board of directors is pleased to announce an interim succession plan that ensures a continued bright, secure future for Somerset Hospital.”

Saylor started his career at Somerset in 1982 and has served the last five years as vice president and chief operating officer.

Rush has been with the hospital since 2000 and was promoted from the position of vice president for physician recruitment.

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