Mercy Health System Leadership

John Starcher 

John M. Starcher, Jr., Esq.

President and CEO, Mercy Health

John Starcher is the President and CEO of Mercy Health – headquartered in Cincinnati, OH.  Mercy Health is Ohio’s largest healthcare delivery system and one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit Catholic healthcare systems.  In his capacity as CEO, Starcher oversees the development of system strategies and operations for all 23 hospitals and the clinically integrated network across the states of Ohio and Kentucky.  The delivery system offers a full range of acute and post-acute services which treat more than 5.9 million patients annually through 450 practice locations and employs approximately 34,000 employees, 1,300 employed providers, and has net operating revenue of more than $4 billion.

Starcher was the former president and chief executive officer of Health Management Associates (HMA) a publicly traded, $6 billion net revenue, integrated acute care delivery system with 71 hospitals across 15 states in the US.  In this capacity, he guided HMA through a shareholder proxy vote that resulted in the replacement of the entire incumbent board and, ultimately the successful sale of HMA to Community Health Systems.  Prior to assuming the role of president and CEO, Starcher served as president of the Eastern Group -- HMA’s largest and most profitable division which had 23 hospitals in Tennessee, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Prior to joining HMA, Starcher was with Mercy Health, formerly Catholic Health Partners (CHP), where he served as the CEO of three of their four divisions – overseeing more than 20 acute care hospitals, 5 long term care facilities, 6 home health agencies and dozens of affiliated clinical practices with more than $3 billion in net revenue across the states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Tennessee.  Previously at CHP, he also served as the CEO of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Region, the senior vice president of Human Resources and corporate associate general counsel.

Starcher began his healthcare career in academic medicine, serving six years in progressive leadership roles at the Medical College of Ohio, now the University of Toledo Medical Center.

He has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Bowling Green State University and a Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Toledo.  He is licensed to practice law in the State of Ohio and has actively served as a director on more than 16 boards, in industries which include banking, insurance, sub-acute health care, acute health care, specialty care and physician practices.

Michael Bezney

Michael Bezney

Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel

Michael A. Bezney joined Mercy Health in 2002 as senior vice president and general counsel. He has 20 years of expertise in healthcare law, with extensive experience in strategy, negotiations, acquisitions/divestitures, compliance and bond financing.

Prior to joining Mercy Health, Bezney served as vice president and associate general counsel for Advocate Health Care, the largest nonprofit system in metropolitan Chicago. Before he joined Advocate in 1996, Bezney was a partner in the healthcare law department of McDermott, Will & Emery, a Chicago-based law firm. Previously, he served as an associate in corporate law with the Dallas, Texas-based firm of Johnson & Gibbs.

Bezney earned his Doctorate in Jurisprudence from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and a bachelor's degree in finance from the University of Texas. 
Deborah Bloomfield

Debbie Bloomfield

Chief Financial Officer

Deborah Bloomfield serves as the chief financial officer (CFO) for Mercy Health, a role she has held since 2013.  As CFO, Bloomfield functions as a strategic partner to the chief executive officer, managing the financial operations of the organization, treasury, supply chain, real estate and construction. Prior to accepting this role, Bloomfield was the divisional chief financial officer for Mercy Health's southern division (Cincinnati, Lima, Paducah and Springfield). Bloomfield has over 25 years of experience in health care finance, most recently with Mercy Health, a not-for-profit health care system with 23 acute care hospitals and $6 billion in assets.

Prior to her career at Mercy Health, Bloomfield was employed by Ernst and Young, LLP, specializing in the healthcare and finance services sectors. Bloomfield holds a PhD in business administration from Touro University International (now Trident University). She has a Master of Business Administration degree in finance and management information systems from Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio and an undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, in accounting from Xavier University. In addition, she is a certified public accountant in Ohio (active) and a member of the Healthcare Financial Management Association.

 Anton Decker

Anton Decker, M.B.B.Ch.

Chief Clinical Officer and President, Mercy Health Physicians

Dr. Anton Decker serves as president of Mercy Health Physicians, Mercy Health's partner physician group. He leads Mercy Health's high-performing multi-specialty practice of about 1,300 providers. Mercy Health Physicians is the engine for our population strategies and the core of our transformation efforts for care delivery in the communities we serve.

Dr. Decker most recently served as chief medical officer and chairman of Banner Medical Group in Arizona. He also was chairman of Banner Health Network, Banner's accountable care organization.

Dr. Decker is a gastroenterologist and worked at Mayo Clinic Rochester and Arizona where he was an associate professor of medicine, the Mayo Clinic Arizona Gastroenterology Fellowship Program Director, and the director of the Pancreas Clinic. He has published more than 50 peer-reviewed papers and spoken at numerous national and international forums.

A native South African, Dr. Decker earned his medical degree at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, completed his residency and fellowship at Mayo Clinic, and then earned a master's of healthcare administration at the University of Phoenix.

Joe Gage

Joe Gage

Chief Human Resources Officer

Joseph Gage became Senior Vice President of Human Resources in 2011.

Gage came to Mercy Health from Tenet Healthcare Corp. where he served as vice president of human resources, hospital operations for seven years. Prior to joining Tenet, he managed HR and/or labor activities at Levi Strauss and Co., Delta Air Lines, and The Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway Company.

Gage possesses a blend of experience and expertise from healthcare and industry that strengthens Mercy Health's capacity to lead human potential goals and strategies. Mercy Health's commitment to providing safe, high-quality, cost-effective healthcare depends on an engaged and dedicated team of approximately 34,000 employees.
Sister Kathleen Green

Sr. Kathy Green

Chief Mission and Values Officer

Sister Kathy Green, RSM, became senior vice president for mission and values integration in 2013. Previously, she was elected to the Mercy Health Corporate Member and board of trustees in 2007. She had served as president of the South Central Community of the Sisters of Mercy.

Earlier, Sister Kathy was regional vice president, Mission Services, for Mercy Health of Southwest Ohio (a Mercy Health region). Before that, she served as vice president, Mission Services, for the region's Mercy Hospital Anderson in Cincinnati, Ohio. Her prior positions included serving as religion teacher, department chairperson and director of faculty and student retreats for Mother of Mercy High School in Cincinnati; liturgical consultant at Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in Cincinnati; volunteer prison chaplain; director of religious education at St. Joseph Parish in Sharon, Penn.; and social studies and religion teacher, chairperson of both departments and director of student activities at Mercyhurst Preparatory School in Erie, Penn.

In addition, Sister Kathy has served on numerous boards of trustees, including Mercy Neighborhood Ministries, Healthy Moms and Babies, Mercy Health Partners of Southwest Ohio Foundation and Owensboro Mercy Health System. She was board president for Bethany House Services and board secretary for Jordan Center, and was also a member of the Xavier University Nursing Advisory Board.

Sister Kathy earned a bachelor's of science in secondary education (social studies and political science) from Slippery Rock State University and a Master's in Liturgical Studies/Theology from St. John's University. She was also a Fellow of the Creating Healthier Communities Care Forum and is an alumna of the Creating Healthier Communities Forum Summit.

 Brian Smith

Brian Smith

Chief Operating Officer

Brian Smith oversees Mercy Health operations throughout the ministry. He was promoted to chief operating officer in 2016, with responsibilities including management of Mercy Health's seven operating regions, information technology, facility planning and other areas. He also oversees the Mercy Health relationship with Summa Health. Smith was promoted to executive vice president of Mercy Health in 2012, after serving as CEO of the ministry's North division. Prior to that time, he held the position of executive vice president/chief operating officer with St. Rita’s Health Partners in Lima, including two hospitals, four physician joint ventures, and a wholly owned physician enterprise. He was with St. Rita’s for more than 20 years.

Smith received his bachelor’s degree from Ohio Northern University in Ada, Ohio. He received a master’s degree in business administration from Ashland University.

Smith was recognized by Modern Healthcare with its “Up and Comers” award in 2004 given annually to health executives under 40 years of age who have demonstrated superior leadership skills.

He is past chairman of the board of The Lima/Allen County Chamber of Commerce. He is also a member of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Summa Health System Board of Directors, the Mercy College of Ohio Board of Trustees, and the Advisory Board for the James Dicke College of Business Administration at Ohio Northern University.

 Imran Andrabi

Imran Andrabi, MD

CEO, Mercy Health – Toledo Region
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health

Dr. Imran Andrabi, MD, FAAFP, CMCM, is the president and CEO/chief network integration officer for Mercy Health – Toledo. In addition to his role as Mercy's leader in Toledo, he also is chairman of the board for Mercy Health Physicians LLC, which represents more than 1,300 employed physicians and mid-level providers across the ministry in Ohio and Kentucky.

He had served as president and CEO of the Mercy Health Clinically Integrated Network and chief physician executive officer for the Northern Market.

Dr. Andrabi is responsible for the daily operations of Mercy Health – Toledo, including its hospitals and physicians, development of the Clinically Integrated Network for Mercy Health’s Northern Market, expansion of the Mercy Health Accountable Care Organization (ACO), development of the Mercy Health Physician Network, heading the population health management system, oversight of regional academic programs in graduate, undergraduate and research, and oversight of the medical staffs professional affairs and quality across the northern market. In addition to being a highly regarded physician and leader within Mercy Health, Dr. Andrabi has held several key leadership roles including president and CEO of Mercy Health St. Vincent Medical Center; chief academic officer for Mercy Health, chief operating officer for St. Charles and senior vice president, Operational Transformation at St. Vincent. His other accomplishments include leading Mercy Health’s graduate medical education program while collaborating with his counterparts to make it the distinguished program that it is today.

Dr. Andrabi graduated in the top 3 percent of his class in 1990 at King Edward Medical College in Lahore, Pakistan. He is a graduate of the second cohort of the CHP Leadership Academy. He is a diplomat of the American Board of Family Medicine and the American Board of Managed Care Medicine. He is also a fellow of the National Institute for Program Director Development, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the Association of International Physicians of NW-Ohio, and the Academy of Medicine of Toledo & Lucas County. He has also completed the Medicine and Management program with Kaiser Permanente as a representative of Mercy Health.

 Bob Baxter

Bob Baxter

CEO, Mercy Health – Lima Region
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health

Bob Baxter serves as president and CEO of St. Rita's Health Partners in Lima, Ohio, which includes St. Rita's Medical Center (a 425-bed acute care hospital), St. Rita's Physician Services, and 11 Joint Venture and other Subsidiary Corporations. St. Rita's Health Partners delivers quality health care to more people in West Central Ohio than any other hospital in a 10-county region.

St. Rita's has consistently achieved top quartile performance in quality, finance, and human resources. During his tenure at St. Rita's, Baxter has taken steps to improve financial performance, thereby contributing to the long-term ability to serve the Mission.

He has led statistically significant improvement in the Gallup scores at SRMC through collaboration with Human Resources and implementation of leadership rounding, employee forums, and accountability of leadership. He also championed efforts to expand CarePATH locally. St. Rita's was named one of the Top 100 Hospitals for Patient Experience by WomenCertified. St. Rita's is a member of a five-hospital regional health care alliance (West Central Ohio Regional Healthcare Alliance) which has achieved significant annual savings and created a Regional Cancer Center and Specialty-Care Campus in Celina, Ohio.

Prior to coming to Lima, Baxter spent more than seven years at Rapid City Regional Medical Center as the VP, Operations and in the chief operating officer role. He received a master's degree in business administration and a master's of art from the University of Iowa. He is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and in 2008 received the ACHE's "Regents" Award.


Matt Caldwell

President and CEO, Community Mercy Health Partners (Springfield, Ohio)
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health

Matthew Caldwell joined Mercy Health in December 2016 as president and CEO of Community Mercy Health Partners in the Springfield Region. Matt joined Mercy Health from Tennova Healthcare Lebanon in Lebanon, Tenn., where he served as CEO for four years. He previously served as CEO of Dallas Regional Medical Center in Texas, and has healthcare leadership experience at other Texas hospitals in varied roles, including chief operating officer, chief nursing officer and VP of Patient Care Support.

Matt holds a master’s degree in healthcare administration from the University of Texas at Arlington and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Bethel College in North Newton, Kansas. Matt started his healthcare career in nursing and has experience in critical care, recovery room, orthopedic post-operative care and as a case manager.


Mike Garfield

CEO, Mercy Health – Cincinnati Region
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health

Mike Garfield is the executive leader of Mercy Health – Cincinnati. He is accountable for leading its operations, which includes five award-winning hospitals and four freestanding emergency departments, as well as accredited cardiac, oncology and orthopaedic service lines. Previously, Garfield served as chief operating officer of Mercy Health – Cincinnati. In that role, he was accountable for operations, placing a strong emphasis on quality, patient experience, physician relations and business development.

Garfield brings more than 30 years’ experience in hospital operations to Mercy Health. Prior to joining Mercy Health, he was division president at Health Management Associates, serving as president of a division consisting of 13 hospitals in Tennessee, Missouri, Kentucky and West Virginia. He also has held executive leadership roles with Community Health Systems, the second largest publically traded operator of general acute care hospitals in the U.S. and was CEO of four hospitals within HCA/Health Trust, a privately-held, owner and operator of approximately 160 hospitals and 120 outpatient centers in 20 states and England.

Garfield received a bachelor’s degree in economics and business administration from Furman University, Greenville, S.C. and a master’s degree in healthcare administration from Tulane University, New Orleans.

 Chris Hilton

Chris Hilton

Senior Vice President, Operations Finance

Chris Hilton is responsible for Supply Chain, AP SSO, Reimbursement, Capital and Long Range Planning, Finance for the Home Office/Support Services and oversight of Finance and Performance for Revenue Cycle/Ensemble Health Partners.

Prior to joining Mercy Health, Hilton served as the chief financial officer of Aviation West Charters (Angel MedFlight Worldwide Air Ambulance) as well as senior vice president, Operations Finance, for Health Management Associates, where he spent the majority of his career. He has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Georgia Southern University, and has earned a CPA license from the state of Georgia (currently inactive).

 Don Kline

Don Kline

CEO, Mercy Health – Youngstown Region
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health

Don Kline has more than 28 years of healthcare experience, eight of which are with Mercy Health. He began his career in the organization as divisional chief financial officer for the Northern markets.

Kline most recently served as chief financial officer, markets, serving all seven Mercy Health markets by providing strategic and operational support to the market presidents and their senior teams. In his role, he was instrumental in providing leadership for operations and enhancing integration between system and markets, including serving as interim chief operating officer for the Cincinnati Region, co-chairing the operations advisory committee and contributing as a member of the Lead the Ministry operations committee.

Since joining Mercy Health, he has served on numerous committees including the IT Strategy Committee, Physician Operations Group, Quality and Patient Safety Committee, and Supply Chain Subcommittee, as well as a number of task force groups supporting operational improvements across the ministry. He holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Pittsburgh and a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from Duquesne University.

 Matt Love

Matt Love

SVP and Divisional CFO

Matt Love joined Mercy Health in February 2012 as Chief Financial Officer in the Youngstown region and quickly added the responsibility of leading strategy and planning.  Prior to joining Mercy Health, he served in operational and planning roles for several years at Methodist LeBonhuer Healthcare in Memphis, Tenn.  Earlier in his career, he served as the top financial executive at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland, OH. 

Love became Chief Financial Officer, North Markets in December 2015.  He is an experienced healthcare leader with expertise in finance, hospital operations, business development, strategy, program implementation, and the development of strategic partnerships. 

In addition, he has successfully started and led several large physician practices.

Love received a bachelor's of science degree in industrial and systems engineering from The Ohio State University and a master's of business administration from Cleveland State University.  He is also a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE) and is involved with several civic activities, serving on the Youngstown/Warren Regional Board as chairman elect and on the Ohio Hospital Association's Finance Committee. He was also Board Chairman of the Memphis Medical Center.

Dave Nowiski

Dave Nowiski

CFO, Mercy Health Physicians and Mercy Health Select

Dave Nowiski is the current CFO for Mercy Health Physicians, HealthSpan Partners, Mercy Health Select and Mercy Health's Behavioral Health Institute.  He has been with Mercy Health for the past 18 years in various financial leadership roles.   

Nowiski has 38 years of progressive healthcare financial leadership experience.  In his current role, he has led the development of the financial infrastructure for Mercy Health’s employed physician platform, which exceeds 1,300 employed provider FTE’s.   Prior to his current role, he was the Southern Division CFO for Catholic Health Partners for the previous 10 years.  His other experiences include 14 years of CFO/Finance Leadership roles with Quorum Health Resources and a CFO position within the Holy Cross Health System.

He has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Ferris State University and a master’s degree in healthcare management from Central Michigan University.

Edwin Oley

Edwin Oley

CEO, Mercy Health – Lorain Region
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health

Edwin Oley has been an instrumental figure in healthcare in the Lorain County community for more than 38 years. After earning a bachelor of science degree in pharmacy from Ohio Northern University’s College of Pharmacy in 1977, Oley practiced clinically at St. Joseph Hospital for several years.  In 1988 he was elevated to director of pharmacy and in 1996 he joined the executive management team of the newly merged St. Joseph and Lorain Community Hospitals.

Oley's leadership has been instrumental in bringing many invaluable health care resources to Lorain County. In the late 1990s, he oversaw the development of a regional cancer program, with one of the outcomes being a creative relationship with University Hospitals and the construction of the Mercy Cancer Center. His leadership brought comprehensive cancer care to the Lorain County community that is nationally recognized in supporting patients across the region.

In 2000, Oley was made the CEO of Oberlin Medical Center, which only months before had announced its imminent closing.  Within months, Oley was able to restore services to the community, attract high-caliber physicians and right the dire financial situation the hospital faced. 

In his nine-year tenure as Chief Executive Officer of the Lorain Region, Oley has worked passionately to develop talent among his leadership and staff.  Making people his priority has earned Mercy regular recognition in the NorthCoast 99, being recognized as one of the best places to work in Northeast Ohio seven times.   He has been visionary in expanding Mercy’s clinically integrated network of primary and specialty care physicians enhancing access to care across the region.  Always understanding the importance of partners, Oley has forged relationships with the Lorain County Metro Parks to create the Mercy Health and Recreation Center, as well as with University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital to provide the highest level of pediatric care in Mercy’s emergency rooms. Oley has ensured Mercy’s organizational and financial strength, furthering its ability to thrive in a changing healthcare environment and extending healthcare access for the region’s residents.  

Active in the community, Oley recently served as the chair of the Lorain County Chamber of Commerce and currently serves as a Trustee on the Boards of CommStar Credit Union and the Lorain County Community College Foundation.  He is a past chair of the local United Way and has served on numerous boards and committees throughout the county.    Oley was recognized by the American Red Cross as its 2012 Community Hero and by the Boy Scouts of America as their 2016 Distinguished Citizen Award honoree.

He has for six consecutive years been named to Inside Business magazine’s “Power 100” list, citing the most influential, effective and visionary leaders across Northeast Ohio.


Mark Skaja

Vice President, Mission Integration & Spiritual Care

Mark Skaja has served in this role since September 2014, providing leadership and facilitation to regional Mission executives, spiritual care leaders, and other key personnel to ensure that the Mission and values of Mercy Health are effectively communicated and integrated into all facets of planning, decision making and operations.

Mark served as vice president, Mission Services for the greater Lima region at St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima, OH, from 1992 to 2014. Prior to that, he was director of pastoral care at St. Rita’s Medical Center from 1989 to 1992, and chaplain for rehabilitation services at Saint Mary’s Health Services and Mary Free Bed Hospital and Rehabilitation Center in Grand Rapids, MI, from 1983 to 1989.


Mark has a Bachelor of Arts in Theology from St. Francis de Sales College in Milwaukee, WI. He has a Master of Arts in Theology, Biblical Studies, and a Master of Divinity from St. John’s Provincial Seminary in Plymouth, MI.


Mark has been a certified chaplain since 1991.


Michael Yungmann

President and CEO, Mercy Health - Kentucky
Senior Vice President, Mercy Health

Michael Yungmann joined Mercy Health in 2017 as the president and CEO of Mercy Health - Kentucky and senior vice president of Mercy Health.


Prior to joining Mercy Health, Michael served as president of BayCare Health System in Clearwater, Fla., for three years. While with BayCare Health System, Michael focused on physician relationships, service line growth and patient and employee satisfaction. In a previous position as CEO of Southside Regional Medical Center, Petersburg, Va., the hospital achieved HealthGrades 5-Star Ratings for Orthopaedic Services, GYN Surgery and Treatment of Heart Failure. He has healthcare leadership experience at other hospitals in Florida, Tennessee and Missouri, serving in various roles including CEO, Chief Operating Officer/Associate Administrator.


He started his healthcare career as a physical therapist and clinic supervisor and has also been director of Rehabilitation and Cardiopulmonary Services.  


Michael holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from the Saint Leo University, St. Leo, Fla and a bachelor’s of Health Science in Physical Therapy from University of Florida, Gainesville, Fla. 

Mercy Health Board of Trustees

Board members at Mercy Health are offered a unique opportunity to: improve the health of the community; advocate change for those in need; grow intellectually, spiritually and emotionally; expand their knowledge; share their expertise; and interact with others in an environment which challenges and stimulates their thinking. Board membership is a synergistic partnership with the organization to develop each other to their fullest potential.

The Mercy Health corporate board of trustees provides overall system direction, approves appointments to regional boards, and appoints and evaluates the system CEO. It approves system and regional strategic and financial plans. It also is responsible for mergers, acquisitions, divestitures and dissolutions of subsidiaries; approves debt and expenditures in excess of the amount authorized for the CEO; and annually appoints an external auditing firm; and also serve on the Mercy Health corporate board, assuring integration of the sponsors' interests in Mercy Health's future vision and strategies and approving certain major actions as required by Church law.

Members of Mercy Health's Board of Trustees include:

  • Katherine A. Arbuckle, CPA
  • Sister Doris Gottemoeller, RSM
  • Lawrence L. Grypp
  • Catherine A. Jacobson, FHFMA, C.P.A.
  • Denise Koo, MD, MPH
  • David C. Leach, M.D.
  • Iliana A. Mora
  • Sister Jean Orsuto, HM, R.N., M.S.N.
  • Leonard M. Randolph, Jr., M.D., Vice Chair, Board of Trustees
  • Donald Rohling
  • Fr. Myles N. Sheenan, SJ
  • Sister Carol Anne Smith, HM
  • Sister Mary Stanton, RSM
  • John M. Starcher, Jr., JD, President & CEO
  • Katherine W. Vestal, R.N., Ph.D., FAAN, FACHE, Chair, Board of Trustees

Please note that Mercy Health's chief financial officer serves as treasurer of the board of trustees and that Mercy Health's chief governance officer serves as secretary of the board of trustees.