JFL Announces Resignation of CEO Douglas Koch and Discusses Transition

Chief Executive Officer Douglas Koch resigned Wednesday. (Photo courtesy JFL Hospital and Medical Center)

It was announced on Wednesday that Chief Executive Officer Douglas Koch was resigning from his position at the Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Center.

Koch, who spent two and a half years, said that his reason for resigning was due to “personal reasons” and “made the difficult decision to relocate back to the Midwest to be closer to family.”

During his tenure as CEO, Koch achieved numerous milestones, according to a press release regarding his resignation. One of which was the successful transition of patient care service from the hurricane-damaged JFL Main to the new JFL North facility.

“Through his partnerships with various organizations and individuals, Governor Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Center is well on its way to a full replacement hospital for the St. Croix community,” the press release stated.

The Source spoke with Chris Finch, chairman of the Juan F. Luis Hospital Board, on Friday, who said, “We are hiring a national search firm that specializes in hospital leadership that we’ve worked with several times before. We had a long conversation with them this morning and the board voted me to negotiate a contract for a search. This is for the fulltime replacement, and we will be announcing that we will be accepting applications within JFL for anyone who is interested in the interim.”

The interim will work alongside Koch in his remaining weeks until they find a full-time replacement in which they are hoping by October.

“These things happen in the hospital world and the operations need to go on,” said Finch.

Finch also said that the major projects going on at JFL will continue as is.

“We are very disappointed to get this news. We have looked forward to working with Doug Koch for years to come as we stabilize and expand services and build and open a new JFLH. CEO Koch recently received a stellar personnel evaluation from board members. Under his leadership, we successfully moved most hospital operations into JFL North. We were able to hire permanent nurses, thus greatly reducing our dependence on temporary travel agency staffing, and he has been building an excellent leadership and hospital team. As board and leadership, we have been looking forward to continued recruitment of doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, and staff for all positions that are underway. This work will continue, and we will continue the plans he has for expanded services,” he said.

Gov. Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Facility. (Photo courtesy JFL Hospital and Medical Center)

In terms of finding the next CEO, Finch said, “We always hope for stability in the right person, and I think we did. When you have the right person, there’s a benefit to having that with some longevity in keeping everything moving at the correct pace. There’s always a period of the new person coming up to speed and you want to minimize those disruptions. You want to create a senior leadership team that works cohesively together because that’s the best way to move the hospital forward.”