Mitchell to take helm at Delta County Memorial

John Mitchell, Delta County Memorial Hospital’s new chief executive officer

Delta County Memorial Hospital’s new chief executive officer will begin work Oct. 17.

Fort Collins resident John Mitchell will replace retiring CEO Tom Mingen, who still is working at the hospital for now and will help Mitchell transition into the position.

Mitchell has worked in hospitals since 1985. He spent 14 years as a marketing and public relations employee for hospitals in Virginia, worked in operations for Centura Health in Pueblo for five and a half years, and served as chief operating officer for Grays Harbor Community Hospital in Grays Harbor, Wash.

“The problem up there was we wanted to be back in Colorado,” Mitchell said.

So, he took a job with Centura in Denver. He said he found it difficult to work for a larger hospital system and decided to recruit hospital administrators with consultant firm Bashandy, Mitchell & Associates in Fort Collins. But, within a few months of starting the consultant business, he felt called to return to hospital administration.

“I love the work. I love hospitals. I love working in rural areas,” Mitchell said. “(Administrators) may not be clinicians, but we can still contribute to helping people.”

Mitchell said he has been “winding down” his consultant work during the past few weeks and plans to move to Delta with his wife in early October.

The hospital’s board of directors selected Mitchell from among 105 applicants. Board Chairwoman Thelma Starner said Mitchell became the clear favorite when he and two other finalists for the job visited the hospital.

“He said everything we wanted,” Starner said. “He had been a COO, he was easy to get along with, he felt very strongly about patient care. He got along with all the department heads. We just wanted him to come into the job and continue to grow.”

Starner said the hospital has no current plans to expand, but that may change once Mitchell gets settled in his new job.

“We all have dreams and aspirations for our hospital,” she said.


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