Leadership at the University of Maryland Medical System has been dramatically shaken up in the wake of a recent self-dealing scandal involving board members holding lucrative contracts with the system. A slate of resignations and retirements by board members and top executives have occurred in recent months.
Here’s a quick rundown of leaders who have left, stepped into new roles or remain in key positions.
Chrencik was president and CEO of UMMS from 2008 until his resignation in April. He had been with the system since its creation in 1984.
As CEO, Chrencik was an ex officio member of the UMMS board and served on the boards of its affiliate hospitals.
Chrencik submitted his resignation, effective immediately, about a month after taking paid leave and a day after the medical system received a subpoena for documents in a federal investigation into Baltimore Democratic then-Mayor Catherine Pugh’s business dealings with the system and other buyers of her self-published “Healthy Holly” children’s books. The system paid Pugh $500,000 for 100,000 books, only some of which were printed.
Chrencik made about $2.6 million in the year ending June 2018, according to the system’s tax filings for that year.
Ashworth was named interim president and CEO when Chrencik went on leave.
He also still serves as senior vice president of network development at UMMS and associate dean at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, positions to which he was promoted in June 2004.
According to his UMMS biography, Ashworth is “responsible for developing the Medical System’s statewide network, directing acquisition strategies, and working to strengthen partnerships with hospitals and physician groups throughout Maryland.” He also serves as the system’s “principle liaison” to the Shock Trauma Center and other emergency services, and to “community-based health advocacy and support groups relating to trauma and emergency care.”
Ashworth was paid more than $820,000 in the year ending June 2018, according to the system’s tax filings for that year.
Arthur resigned as senior vice president and general counsel for UMMS on Thursday, effective June 21.
She oversaw legal affairs across the system, managing all internal legal staff and supervising the use of external legal resources, according to the system.
Her responsibilities include “integrating legal services across the Medical System, negotiating and drafting a wide range of transactional agreements and documents, advising the Board of Directors and Corporate staff on legal matters related to strategic plans, and managing outside litigation and specialty counsel,” according to the system.
Arthur received board members’ financial disclosure forms, which listed contracts with the system, before they were filed with the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission.
Arthur was paid about $725,000 in the year ending June 2018, according to the system’s tax filings for that year.
Wollman resigned as senior vice president and chief administrative officer at UMMS on Thursday, effective June 21.
Wollman was “responsible for leading and facilitating key strategic and operational issues” for the CEO, according to the system. He joined UMMS in 1996.
Pugh in March released a 2011 letter written by Wollman to Baltimore City Public Schools, asking for confirmation that the schools would accept a shipment of “Healthy Holly” books that UMMS had paid for.
Wollman was paid about $650,000 in the year ending June 2018, according to the system’s tax filings for that year.
Bachrach resigned as vice president and chief compliance officer at UMMS on Thursday, effective June 21.
She joined the system in 2010.
She is “responsible for oversight of compliance across the system, including the development and implementation of new measures to improve the effectiveness of each hospital's regulatory compliance program,” according to the system.
She was not among the executives whose compensation was detailed in recent tax filings.
Persinger resigned as senior vice president and chief performance improvement officer at UMMS on Thursday, effective June 21.
Persinger has been with the system since 1993. He previously served as executive vice president, chief financial officer and chief operating officer of the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Persinger was paid more than $1 million in the year ending June 2018, according to the system’s tax filings for that year.
Kristin Jones Bryce
Bryce was named chief of staff and senior vice president of external affairs at UMMS on Thursday, effective June 21.
She had been vice president of external affairs and systems integration at UMMS, which she joined in 2015.
In that role, she “focuses on policy within a rapidly evolving health care environment, relationship building, and government affairs on behalf of the System’s 13 hospitals, academic and community-based clinicians, ambulatory care network, health plans, and University of Maryland School of Medicine partners,” the system said.
She previously served for 10 years as the chief of staff to the late House Speaker Michael E. Busch, and before that as Busch’s legislative counsel. She also serves on the Governor’s Salary Commission, appointed to a four year term by Senate President Thomas V. “Mike” Miller in 2017.
Bryce was not among the executives whose compensation was detailed in recent tax filings.
Burch was appointed to the UMMS board in 2008 by then-Gov. Martin O’Malley, and became chairman soon after.
Burch announced in May that he is resigning effective July 1 to “open a seat” for a new appointment by Gov. Larry Hogan, the system said.
Burch has been a senior executive at Protégé Executive Coaching & Consulting, which “provides leadership and career development advice to executives and companies seeking long-term success,” according to the company’s website.
Burch reported in his financial disclosure form for UMMS for 2017-18 that his son, Aaron Burch, is director of legal services for University of Maryland Health Care Advantage, a provider of Medicare insurance. The younger Burch’s LinkedIn profile says he is director of business and legal services for the University of Maryland Medical System Health Plans.
Burch was not paid as a board member. He has disclosed his son was employed by the system.
Pugh was appointed to the UMMS board in 2002 and resigned in March — while serving as Baltimore’s mayor — after The Baltimore Sun revealed her book deals with the system. She resigned as mayor in May.
Pugh received five payments of $100,000 each, in 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2018. Each payment was for 20,000 books, though Pugh has only produced documentation showing 60,000 books were printed. She returned the last $100,000 payment from 2018 after The Sun reported the deals, and said the books under the 2017 payment are on their way.
She and UMMS officials have said the books were intended for city students.
Investigations have been launched into Pugh’s book deals, with UMMS and other buyers with business before the city, by the FBI, the State Prosecutor and the city’s Ethics Board.
Pevenstein had been a UMMS board member for 16 years before his resignation in March. He also resigned in May from the University System of Maryland Board of Regents.
In 2018, Pevenstein, the founder of technology companies, earned more than $100,000 from UMMS for consulting work — a contract he said he was approached about by Chrencik and another UMMS executive, former chief financial officer Henry Franey. He also earned more than $50,000 from his work for The Optime Group, which handles workforce management, and between $10,000 and $50,000 from his work with Profit Recovery Partners, which focuses on cost reductions for big companies, according to disclosure forms he filed with the state.
Pevenstein’s son, Scott Pevenstein, made more than $100,000 from commissions related to UMMS employees enrolling in and paying for Aflac supplemental benefit insurance programs, he reported.
In 2017, Pevenstein reported in state financial disclosure forms that his firms earned more than $150,000 from UMMS contracts, and that he took in more than $108,000 on commissions. He reported his son made more than $100,000
In an interview with The Sun, Pevenstein said he and his former colleagues on the UMMS board had done “nothing wrong” because the board is not subject to state procurement laws and members complied with internal rules governing conflicts by disclosing contracts internally and to the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission.
Dillon was first appointed to the UMMS board in 2006, and resigned in March, along with Pevenstein. He also resigned as chair of the board of UM Shore Regional Health, a position he also had held for years.
Dillon reported in both 2017 and 2018 that his health care consulting firm, Dillon Consulting, generated more than $150,000 a year through a contract with the system for “capital campaign and strategic planning.” He reported the contract was paying his firm $13,000 a month.
Between 2010 and 2018, his family company Kelly & Associates — where his sons are executives — generated about $16 million in revenue for managing insurance and benefits for UMMS and some of its affiliate hospitals, according to disclosures Kelly made to the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission and company estimates to The Sun. About $12 million was made in just the past five years. Profits under those deals came to the company through commissions and fees.
Kelly has taken leave as a UMMS board member, as chair of the Shock Trauma Board of Visitors and as chair of the board of the affiliated St. Joseph Medical Center. His son David Kelly took leave from the St. Joseph board, and his son John Kelly from the boards of the affiliated Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital, University of Maryland Medical Center, University of Maryland School of Medicine and Institute of Human Virology.
In a statement, Frank Kelly III, the former senator’s son and CEO of the Kelly company, said he and his family “respect and enthusiastically welcome” the outside review by Nygren Consulting, but could not discuss their relationships with the system pending its completion.
Wasserman has been senior vice president for external affairs at UMMS since 1997.
He is a longtime political operative in the state who got his start working under former Baltimore Mayor William Donald Schaefer. In 1986, he managed Schaefer’s successful gubernatorial campaign and went on to serve as Schaefer’s chief of staff. He then served as secretary of economic and employment development from 1991 to 1995.
Maryland Policy & Politics
Wasserman was paid nearly $510,000 in the year ending June 2018, according to the system’s tax filings for that year.