[Vision2020] Swanson severs ties with Gritman

Moscow Cares moscowcares at moscow.com
Sat Jul 8 01:50:00 PDT 2017

You will be missed, friend.

BJ Swanson's presentation at the Social Justice Forum (September 21, 2011)

Courtesy of today's (July 8, 2017) Moscow-Pullman Daily News.

Swanson severs ties with Gritman
Former chair resigns after 19 years on board
Longtime Gritman Medical Center Board of Directors member BJ Swanson severed all ties between herself, the hospital and its board in a resignation letter she submitted Monday.

Swanson served as a board member for 19 years, including 15 years as its chair. Swanson was recently removed as an officer of the 10-member board of directors, but she still held a position on the 40-member general membership board.

Swanson was replaced by Greg Kimberling last year as the board's chair. She has been critical of the way Kimberling has been handling two major conflicts of interest after he assumed the board chair position. Kimberling is the broker for Gritman's hazard insurance policies, and his sister owns Sprenger Construction Inc., which has been awarded numerous contracts to complete construction projects for the hospital.

"The challenges facing Gritman are serious," Swanson wrote in her resignation letter. "Numerous key professional people have left or were ousted, particularly those who questioned the lucrative no-bid contracts for insurance and construction awarded to current board chair Greg Kimberling and his family. A construction manager left or was ousted. CPA Greg Mann was ousted from the board through an invalid election. Chief Financial Officer Harry Jasper left after only four months. Also of concern is the board chair refusing to disclose financial documents regarding the no-bid contracts, cutting off discussion on matters that enrich him and his family, influencing deals in his favor outside of board meetings and editing meeting minutes to present a biased record in his favor. ... I cannot continue to be associated with the reckless, self-serving environment of the current Gritman board and administration."

Before Swanson resigned, Gritman President and CEO Kara Besst called a private meeting of the 40-member general board Wednesday to request a vote from the general membership for the removal of Swanson as a member of the board of directors and as a general member.

Besst said the meeting will still be held so questions general members have about Gritman's future can be addressed. She said legal counsel will be present at the meeting to answer questions regarding the hospital's bylaws and Idaho not-for-profit codes. Besst said the meeting is closed to the public.

"The purpose of the meeting is to remove me from the board," Swanson wrote. "That is a pleasure I will deny them."

Swanson wrote she was honored to serve as a board member and board chair and is proud of the hospital's accomplishments during her tenure.

Besst and board representative Barbara Wells accepted Swanson's resignation in a letter to Swanson dated Wednesday. Besst told the Daily News on Friday that she is thankful for Swanson's years of service and dedication to the hospital.

General board member Sharon Harris of Kendrick also praised Swanson.

"Gritman is where it is today because of BJ Swanson," she said.


Seeya 'round town, Moscow, because . . .

"Moscow Cares" (the most fun you can have with your pants on)
Tom Hansen
Moscow, Idaho
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