Board members said Austin has “a proven track record in hospital operations and development and has dedicated his entire professional career to working and serving rural communities.”
“Moab Regional Hospital has made a great deal of progress financially over the last year and now has a solid foundation and bright future. The board and hiring committee are confident that Robb Austin’s experience and visionary leadership in rural healthcare will allow the hospital to overcome challenges and leverage opportunities as we navigate healthcare reform,” said Mike Bynum, MRH board chairman. “Our physician partners and staff members interviewed Robb personally, which was much appreciated and certainly contributed to his eagerness to become a part of our team.”
Austin’s most recent position was as the CEO of the Estes Park Medical Center in Estes Park, Colo., a position he held from August 2007 to January 2013, according to the news release. Austin served as president of the Gunnison Valley Hospital in Gunnison, Colo., from 1984-2003; as director of business development and outreach for the Poudre Valley Health System in Fort Collins, Colo.; and as CEO of the Aitkin Community Hospital in Aitkin, Minn.
He has served on the American Hospital Association’s Regional Policy Board and the Section for Small or Rural Hospitals Governing Council. Austin has served 12 years on the Colorado Hospital Association board of directors while chairing CHA in 1995, and is an American College of Healthcare Executives fellow, receiving the ACHE Regents Award for Colorado in 1996 and 2009. Austin received his Master of Science degree in business and health fiscal administration from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and his B.S. degree from Moorhead State University in Minn.
Austin and his wife Betsy say they have enjoyed hiking in Moab for many years, and are excited to relocate to the community.
“I am very grateful for the opportunity to join the family at Moab Regional Hospital and to live in this beautiful community,” Austin said. “Moab Regional Hospital is clearly devoted to high quality patient care and to service excellence. All those who I met, from the board, physicians, hospital managers and staff, possess a great energy and spirit of devotion to the hospital, to its patients and to the community. That is precisely the kind of organization I want to be a part of and to continue to help lead and nurture.”
The MRH board of directors also expressed great appreciation and gratitude to John Hart and Jim Richardson, who served as the interim CEO’s during the board’s search, for “providing leadership that kept the financial progress made over the last year on course,” the news release stated.