Johns Hopkins Hospital will get a new president this summer, according to an email Tuesday to the Hopkins medical community from Ronald R. Peterson, the 10th person to hold the position.
Peterson, who has served in the role for almost two decades, will stay on at Hopkins in his other role helping lead Johns Hopkins Medicine, the umbrella alliance of the Hopkins health system and the Hopkins medical school. The new president will report to him.
Peterson wrote that Johns Hopkins Medicine has grown in size and complexity during his tenure and, as a result, Peterson, the dean and the board of trustees decided it was a good time to recruit the next president. Peterson said he plans to retire in a few years and wants an orderly transition, and the opportunity to mentor the new hospital president.
Peterson will retain the titles of executive vice president of Johns Hopkins Medicine and president of the Johns Hopkins Health System, which encompasses six hospitals, hundreds of community physicians and a self-funded health plan. Peterson also has a role in overseeing growth in the care provided by Hopkins internationally.
He and Paul Rothman, dean of the medical faculty and CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine, will serve as co-chairs of the search committee. They plan to have someone in place by July 1.
"I'm comfortable that a major objective has been completed in recent years," he said in an interview, referring to dedication of the new $1.1 billion hospital facility on Orleans Street in 2012 and some ongoing renovations. "This gives me an opportunity now to ensure someone is solely focused on oversight of this, a 1,000-plus bed hospital that is a $2 billion-plus operation unto itself."
During Peterson's tenure, the hospital has been listed as No. 1 all but a handful of times by the widely cited U.S. News & World Report ranking. He came to Hopkins in 1973 as an administrative resident, according to his online biography. He moved up in the ranks to head the Hopkins Children's Center in 1978. In 1982 he helped transform the troubled Baltimore City Hospitals into the Hopkins Bayview Medical Center and served as its president from 1984 to 1999.
Peterson was named executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Hopkins Health System in 1995. He was chosen as acting president of the Hopkins Hospital and Health System in 1996 and given the job permanently within months.
Peterson, a native of New Brunswick, N.J., graduated from Hopkins in 1970 and earned a master's degree in hospital administration from George Washington University. He serves on a number of local boards. One of his two children is a graduate of the Hopkins School of Medicine and is now a member of the emergency medical staff at Hopkins.