Frank Fekete, chairman of the board of trustees of Hackensack Meridian Health, was one of 12 executives around the country to be named to the 2023 class of Modern Healthcare’s Excellence in Governance awards.
The Excellence in Governance program recognizes influential individuals who serve on a board of directors for a health care organization and foster advances in culture, mission and performance.
Fekete has served with distinction as a board member and chair at HMH through a period of tremendous change and innovation. And, of course, the pandemic.
He joined the Hackensack University Health Network board of trustees in 2011, five years before the merger that created Hackensack Meridian Health. He served as vice chair and treasurer and chaired the Executive and Physician Compensation Committee. He also served on the Board Development Committee, chaired the Strategic Planning Committee and participated in the merger of HMH in 2016.
Fekete became chairman in 2020, overseeing major advances, including the network’s formidable and coordinated COVID-19 response.
HMH CEO Robert Garrett said the honor is well deserved.
“Frank Fekete’s steadfast leadership has guided Hackensack Meridian Health’s continued growth and transformation, enabling our network to provide high-quality, compassionate care to the communities we serve,” he said. “Frank’s invaluable insights and contributions helped us navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, expanded our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion initiatives, and ensured we remain ahead of the curve as a health care system of the future. I congratulate him on this well-deserved and distinguished accomplishment.”
Throughout Fekete’s service, he has been involved with consequential decisions that define Hackensack Meridian as one of the nation’s leading health systems. This includes:
- Partnering with Memorial Sloan Kettering to elevate cancer care;
- Having the John Theurer Cancer Center joining the NCI-designated Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Consortium;
- Opening the Hackensack Meridian Center for Discovery and Innovation, where world-renowned researchers target the globe’s most difficult diseases;
- Opening a private medical school, the first in New Jersey in 60 years, which has received national recognition.
Mary Ellen Podmolik, editor in chief of Modern Healthcare, said the honorees all have had great impact.
“Seismic change is underway within health care organizations, and it is the job of directors to steer these major employers in a direction that benefits both the bottom line and patients,” she said. “The 12 directors selected for our Excellence in Governance awards exemplify the commitment, vision and tenacity needed to address challenges head-on and better meet community needs.”