June 20, 2013
Transformative Physician Leader for USF Health Returns to Philadelphia to Oversee New Structure
Stephen K. Klasko, M.D., M.B.A., Dean of the Morsani College of Medicine at the University of South Florida and Chief Executive Officer of USF Health, has been appointed to the newly created position of President of Thomas Jefferson University and President and Chief Executive Officer of TJUH System. Klasko will begin his tenure at Jefferson in early September and assumes this new role created from vacancies previously held by University President Robert L. Barchi, M.D., Ph.D. and Hospital President and CEO Thomas J. Lewis.
In June of 2012, the boards began considering appointing one person responsible for both positions. Since then, Richard C. Gozon, a member of the Thomas Jefferson University Board of Trustees, took on the role of Thomas Jefferson University President while the position of President and CEO of TJUH System remained unfilled.
“It has been 15 years since the University and the Hospital have shared a common leader, but, in a quickly changing healthcare environment, there is a real advantage to having the academic and clinical missions of a major medical center like Jefferson truly intertwined,” said David Binswanger, chair of Thomas Jefferson University’s Board of Trustees. “Steve Klasko brings dynamic and innovative leadership to take advantage of Jefferson’s rich history, vast expertise and extraordinary patient care and drive it in amazing new directions. Steve’s experience as a physician and business leader who transformed USF Health makes him uniquely qualified for this exciting opportunity.”
William Landman, chair of TJUH System Board of Trustees concurs. “Steve Klasko’s optimism and enthusiasm for healthcare will be guiding forces as he leads Jefferson. Innovation is Steve’s hallmark which will serve Jefferson well into its future. He is a born and bred Philadelphian who understands what it will take to be successful here.”
President and CEO of Jefferson Health System Joseph T. Sebastianelli commented, “I am delighted with the appointment of Dr. Steve Klasko. In addition to his leadership in the academic and research arenas, he has the proven expertise and entrepreneurial spirit necessary to help deliver the exceptional clinical outcomes that Jefferson is known for regionally and nationally.”
Dr. Klasko, 59, returns to his hometown with over 30 years of academic leadership experience and business management expertise developed while holding a variety of executive positions at USF and Drexel University College of Medicine.
“I am truly honored to be leading one of the finest academic health centers in the nation,” said Dr. Klasko, “with a rich medical history and stellar reputation for academic excellence, innovative research and compassionate patient care. This is by far one of the greatest opportunities to come along in a decade, to forge Thomas Jefferson University, TJUH System and Jefferson University Physicians into the model for healthcare revolution. Having spent most of my life in Philadelphia, I am thrilled to return to the city that has shaped my career and I look forward to working with the trustees, faculty and staff to transform Jefferson for continued success.”
Dr. Klasko joined the University of South Florida as Dean of the College of Medicine and Vice President of the USF Health Sciences Center (HSC) in 2004. He reorganized the HSC as USF Health, including the colleges and the USF Physicians Group and was named its CEO. While at USF Health, Dr. Klasko was responsible for a series of program changes in medical education. He created the SELECT (scholarly excellence, leadership education, collaborative training) Program, by which students are chosen on quantitative emotional intelligence parameters, and reformed the medical education curriculum, which is now based on the science, business, teamwork and communication skills needed for the physicians of tomorrow. Dr. Klasko also created the USF Health Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation (CAMLS), the world’s largest center for the assessment of technical and teamwork competencies.
At USF Health Dr. Klasko created patient care and academic partnerships through a series of local and state-wide initiatives. He planned and secured funding for the development of over $300 million in new construction, including a college of nursing, faculty and research facilities and the Morsani Center for Advanced Healthcare, built around the concept of continuity of care.
At The Villages, the largest retirement communities in the U.S. with 90,000 residents, Dr. Klasko oversaw the largest single site public health study for seniors, leading to the formation of a primary care driven, community based, accountable care organization. And USF Health teamed up with HCA to form a trauma network, creating five new centers across Florida and a new data analysis center, thus allowing more residents access to trauma care and a broader research base for trauma.
“Steve has been an innovative and energetic presence at USF Health over the past nine years,” said Judy Genshaft, President of the USF System. “We are all grateful for his trailblazing work and for his futuristic vision of healthcare. All of us at USF wish him well in this exciting new endeavor.”
Prior to joining USF, Dr. Klasko served in a series of leadership positions at Drexel University College of Medicine from 2000 to 2004, including Dean of the College of Medicine, Professor of Ob-Gyn and CEO of Drexel University Physicians. He also served as President and CEO of the Lehigh Valley Physician Group from 1996 to 1999.
Dr. Klasko received a bachelor of science degree (B.S.) in Chemistry and Biology from Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA; a doctor of medicine degree (M.D.) from Hahnemann University in Philadelphia, PA; and master of business administration degree (M.B.A.) from the Wharton Executive Program of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA. He is board certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology.