Civista Health’s president and chief executive officer, Christine M. Stefanides, announced that she will retire on February 27 after a career in healthcare that spans 30 years of service to the organization.

Ms. Stefanides came to Civista as a staff nurse in 1979, quickly rose to patient care manager, and in 1990 was appointed acting president and CEO for a brief time during a leadership transition.  She then served as Vice President, Nursing and Patient Services; Senior Vice President, Patient Care Management; and Administrative Director before being appointed President and CEO in 1999. 

As President and CEO, Ms. Stefanides directed the efforts of more than 1,000 employees, physicians and volunteers. Under her leadership a new, expanded, Women’s Health Center and Ambulatory Care Pavilion, including a surgery center, opened and the health system introduced several new services and technologies. 

Perhaps her most notable achievement, however, has been the $85 million, three-year expansion and renovation project which more than doubled the size of Civista Medical Center.  The project included the construction of a new four-story building with many patient-centered enhancements, including a significantly larger Emergency Department, conversion to private patient rooms, as well as major renovations to the existing medical center. 

Civista has been recognized with several awards in the past decade including Business of the Year and Technology Company of the Year.  During her career with Civista, Ms. Stefanides has personally received numerous accolades both locally, statewide and nationally.  She serves on the boards of several local organizations and on two statewide task forces.  She is most proud of Civista’s many accomplishments, including the improved patient safety and confidentiality initiatives which have been implemented. 

Ms. Stefanides has made no definite plans upon retirement.  Among her personal goals are to spend  more time on those activities she finds most restful and rewarding:  gardening, golfing, traveling, reading, and spending time with her husband, daughter and son-in-law, and two young grandchildren.

Noel Cervino, currently serving as Civista’s Chief Financial Officer, will be named interim successor to Ms. Stefanides while the Board of Directors conducts a search for a permanent successor.  Mr. Cervino will continue to serve as CFO during this interim phase.  “We have talented physicians, a professional and caring staff, dedicated volunteers, and a strong governing board”, Stefanides said.  “I’m confident that whoever steps into this role will bring a sustained, long-term leadership commitment that will take us to the next level of achievement for this great organization.  This is the right time for me to step aside and let this process begin.”