Hospital CEO Jerry Klein Resigns

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The Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County Board of Trustees accepted the resignation of CEO Jerry Klein during an emergency meeting today.

Board Chair Richard Mathey told a full room that Klein had previously expressed his desire to resign during the board’s meeting on Wednesday. He said Klein’s letter included certain conditions for his resignation. The three member quorum unanimously voted to accept Klein’s resignation without his conditions.

The board voted to appoint Irene Richardson as the interim CEO for the hospital.

In addition, the board voted to accept the resignation of the hospital board’s attorney, George Lemich, who verbally told Trustees Jones and Mathey of his resignation earlier today and said he would write a formal resignation letter.

Rumors of staff reductions were also addressed during the meeting.

Trustee Jones said the board does not support layoffs of employees.

“I want to be clear. We have not had a desire to see staffing reductions. We did not ask for them. We did not approve them,” said Jones. “We feel it’s very important to be honest with all of you because you are the lifeblood of this hospital. Without you, we only have a building and some equipment. So we are bringing all of the rumors of reductions in staffing to a halt—right here, right now.”

The resignations are only the latest changes at the hospital. During the Board of County Commissioners meeting today, the commissioners unanimously voted to remove two members of the Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees, accepted the resignation of three more, and appointed a new hospital trustee.

Trustees Joe Manatos, Grant Christensen, and Harry Horn resigned their positions, and all three resignations were unanimously accepted.

After executive session, the commissioners unanimously voted to remove trustees Gene Carmody and Artis Kalivas.

Trustees Taylor Jones and Richard Mathey remain on the hospital board.

The commissioners also voted to appoint Barbara J. Sowada to the Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees.

In addition, the commissioners voted to reduce the hospital from a seven member board to a five member board.