Walnut Creek, Calif., July 20, 2022 – John Muir Health has named Mike Thomas as the health system’s next president and CEO, effective October 1, 2022. Mr. Thomas currently serves as executive vice president and Chief Transformation Officer at John Muir Health.
He succeeds Cal Knight who is retiring after more than 11 years at John Muir Health and a 40 year career in health care. Mr. Thomas will become the third president and CEO in the 25-year history of John Muir Health, which was formed after the merger of two hospitals and a physician group in 1997.
“We conducted a national search that attracted more than 60 candidates. Mike continually distinguished himself and impressed the Search Committee with his vision for John Muir Health’s future and understanding of the dynamics of the local health care market, as well as national trends,” said Kathleen Odne, chair, John Muir Health Board of Directors. “His experience, leadership and relationship-building skills, communications acumen and academic qualifications have prepared him very well to lead John Muir Health.”
During his nearly 14 year career at John Muir Health, Mr. Thomas has served as president and Chief Administrative Officer of the health system’s 244-bed acute care hospital and 73-bed psychiatric hospital in Concord, California. He was responsible for operational and financial performance, quality, safety, patient experience, care coordination and workforce development. Most recently, he led the health system’s strategic, operational and clinical transformation efforts to reduce costs and become more affordable for patients and for the community, while simultaneously supporting John Muir Health’s safety, patient experience, and physician and employee engagement goals. In that role, Mr. Thomas also had responsibility for primary and specialty care growth, and the Care Coordination, Value-Based Care, Human Resources, ITS and Strategy & Development functions at John Muir Health.
“I’m continually inspired by the work of our physicians and staff who care for our patients,” said Mr. Thomas. “Like any health system we have challenges, but we also have a great deal to be excited about and I feel incredibly positive about our future. I’m very grateful to be able to help lead a local, community-based organization that plays such a vital part in supporting the health of the communities we serve.”
At John Muir Health, Mr. Thomas has also been instrumental in developing and implementing a strategic partnership with UCSF Health. The two health systems are building a Cancer Network to improve cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and care coordination for cancer patients throughout the East Bay. The first location opened in Berkeley and a new Cancer Center is under construction on John Muir Health’s Walnut Creek Medical Center campus that will open in February 2024. In addition, Mr. Thomas serves as Chair of the Board of Directors for Canopy Health and as a Board member for BayHealth, two organizations that were developed as a result of the partnership between John Muir Health and UCSF Health. He also serves on the Board of John Muir Health’s joint venture with Tenet Healthcare/San Ramon Regional Medical Center.
Mr. Thomas also led the growth of John Muir Health’s affiliated medical groups. This includes an agreement earlier this year with 24 providers and nearly 200 staff from Diablo Valley Oncology and Hematology Medical Group, which includes Pacific Urology and West Coast Surgical Associates, to join John Muir Health. He also worked with five independent cardiology medical groups to join together to become the John Muir Cardiovascular Medical Group in 2013.
Prior to joining John Muir Health, Mr. Thomas served as senior vice president at VHA West Coast, where he developed and implemented customized supply chain management plans for 32 health systems resulting in $100 million of annual savings. In addition, he increased VHA’s membership by 25 hospitals. His career also includes seven years as the Chief Strategic Development Officer for UCSF Medical Center and Children’s Hospital. He led the development and implementation of a comprehensive strategic plan after the dissolution of the UCSF-Stanford Health Care merger in 1999. He has also served in various health care management consulting roles in his career.
Mr. Thomas holds a master's degree in business administration from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, as well as a bachelor's degree in economics from Claremont McKenna College.
About John Muir Health
John Muir Health is a nationally recognized, not-for-profit health care organization east of San Francisco serving patients in Contra Costa, eastern Alameda and southern Solano Counties. It includes a network of more than 1,000 primary care and specialty physicians, 6,200 employees, medical centers in Concord and Walnut Creek, including Contra Costa County’s only trauma center, and a Behavioral Health Center. John Muir Health also has partnerships with UCSF Health, Tenet Healthcare/San Ramon Regional Medical Center, Stanford Children's Health, Carbon Health and Optum. The health system offers a full-range of medical services, including primary care, outpatient and imaging services, and is widely recognized as a leader in many specialties – neurosciences, orthopedic, cancer, cardiovascular, trauma, emergency, pediatrics and high-risk obstetrics care.