University Hospitals, Mount Carmel Health System, Memorial Health Leaders Receive OHA Annual Awards

Columbus, Ohio (43215) – The Ohio Hospital Association today announced the recipients of its annual leadership awards to three Ohio hospital leaders: Tom Zenty, president and CEO, University Hospitals in Cleveland, Sr. Barbara Hahl, CSC, Mount Carmel Health System in Columbus, and Dennis Stone, trustee, Memorial Health in Marysville. The recipients were honored during a virtual event featuring emcee Kurt Ludlow, anchor and reporter, WSYX ABC 6 and WTTE Fox 28 in Columbus.

“Ohio hospitals are cornerstones of the communities they serve, caring for the sick and injured and advancing wellness,” said Mike Abrams, OHA president and CEO. “At a time when hospitals are assuming more comprehensive roles in providing health care services and programming in our communities, strong leaders are essential. We are proud to recognize Tom, Barbara and Dennis for their service and contributions to Ohio hospitals and health care.”

This year’s leadership award honorees are:

Tom Zenty received the OHA Donald R. Newkirk Award. The award is named for Don Newkirk who led OHA as CEO for 27 years, from 1962-1989, and recognizes an individual who has made a significant lifetime contribution to the health care profession in Ohio. 

Sr. Barbara Hahl earned OHA’s James R. Castle Distinguished Service Award, which honors an individual whose professional attainments embody qualities of an outstanding leader or mentor for service to the health care community. This award is named for OHA’s president and CEO for 23 years, from 1989 through 2011. 

Dennis Stone is the 2020 recipient for the OHA Dr. Eli Crew Community Service Excellence Award. This award recognizes an individual’s or organization’s support of the health care industry. The award is named in honor of Dr. Eli R. Crew, former superintendent of Dayton’s Miami Valley Hospital and OHA’s first president. In 1914, he led Ohio hospital administrators to an organizational meeting at Cedar Point, Sandusky where OHA was founded.

Each year OHA invites member hospitals and health systems to nominate one outstanding professional for consideration for Health Care Worker of the Year. The award, created in 1996, honors hospital employees who demonstrate leadership, reflect the mission and values of their institutions, go above and beyond the call of duty and give back to the community. 
About Tom Zenty (click here for photo)
Over his 40-year career in leadership roles at health systems in California, Arizona, New Jersey and Connecticut, Tom Zenty has significantly contributed to the industry by shaping policy; establishing a culture of innovation at UH that has pioneered new treatment modalities and trained the next generation of providers; and by leveraging UH’s influence as an economic powerhouse in the region to create jobs and encourage reinvestment back into the community. 

A component of the system's strategy has been to "move care as close to where patients live.” Under Tom’s leadership, University Hospitals has grown from three hospitals to 18, with nearly 28,000 caregivers, and completed a campaign that raised more than $1.5 billion in philanthropic support. His tenure led a transformation of the institution that expanded services, supported caregiver recruitment and training, and endowed clinical and research programs for future generations. 

In addition to growth, Tom led University Hospitals' expansion to new technologies such as the opening in 2016 of a proton therapy center. The system also has a partnership with Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in which nearly 1,200 residents and fellows are trained at UH. The institutions also partner together in research. UH currently has 2,500 active clinical research trials. He continues to be a driving force behind numerous initiatives at UH that promoted a culture of innovation and transformation.

Tom is a previous recipient of the Warren Bennis Award for Excellence in Leadership from the Global Institute of Leadership Development. He is a past trustee of the American Hospital Association, recognized by Modern Healthcare among the 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare and in the Northeast Ohio Business Hall of Fame. He received an honorary doctorate and served on various visiting committees and faculties of universities within the U.S. and abroad. He served or serves on the boards of publicly traded companies, not-for-profit/community service organizations and private equity corporations.

About Sr. Barbara Hahl (click here for photo)
Sister Barbara Hahl of Mount Carmel is a servant leader who made tremendous contributions. Her nearly 40-year record of service at Mount Carmel Health System leaves a legacy that will stand for generations. She has spent a lifetime being a voice for those who have none and taught countless others to do the same. Her passion is to care for those who are most vulnerable.

As a caring, compassionate hospital leader with a longstanding record of service to patients, her colleagues and the communities of central Ohio have seen firsthand her leadership impact.

After spending 15 years as a teacher in Illinois and Indiana, Hahl pivoted her career toward health care. She came to Mount Carmel in 1981 and worked her way up the ladder, serving in roles that include manager of medical records, assistant administrator for both clinical and non-clinical services and interim chief operating officer at Mount Carmel East. 

Hahl most recently served as the senior vice president of Community Health & Well-Being. In that role, she led Mount Carmel's nationally recognized community outreach programs, including those providing care to the homeless and other underserved populations—hundreds of thousands of patient encounters—free of charge. Her overall responsibilities presiding over Community Health & Well-Being have been the spiritual health and wellness of the entire health system and the communities it serves. Under her leadership, the Community Health & Well-Being programs achieved national recognition. Sr. Barbara oversaw more than $142.9 million in total uncompensated community benefits in Fiscal Year 2019, which provided free health services, outreach programs and other initiatives that were invested in the health of the community’s most vulnerable residents.

She received several awards for her leadership, including a Lifetime Achievement Award from Columbus CEO Magazine in 2013, Healthcare Heroes from Business First in 2009 and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Mount Carmel Foundation in 2009. Under her leadership in 2019, Mount Carmel Street Medicine received Catholic Health Association’s Achievement Citation—a recognition for an outstanding program or service that exemplifies the ministry’s commitment to carry on its mission of compassion and healing.

About Dennis Stone (click here for photo)
Dennis Stone is vice chairperson of the Memorial Health Board of Trustees. Dennis joined the Memorial Health board in December of 2003 and has an extensive 42-year career at the Ohio Auto Club in Worthington, from which he retired in 2013 as the organization’s Executive Vice President. He has been a resident of Union County since 1977. Shortly after attending Lorain and Lakeland Community Colleges in Cleveland, Dennis served in the U.S. Army from 1966-1968, including a tour in Vietnam.

Through forward-thinking, fiercely independent leadership, Memorial Health bucked national trends and established an impressive record of growth over the last two decades. Through his countless hours of service, Dennis guided key strategic decisions, placing the hospital in a position of strength, able to adapt to the changing health care needs of the community. These decisions have led to a combination of projects, partnerships, and added services to benefit the local patient community.