Melissa Powell

Genesis Healthcare Friday morning announced it will replace most of its corporate leadership team and change its operational model as the post-acute provider continues to focus on its recovery.

The announcements come weeks after the one-time industry behemoth announced CEO Harry Wilson would depart on Nov. 15, seven months after he was tapped to lead a financial turnaround. Just a year ago, the company warned that it could face bankruptcy given the pandemic and other operating pressures.

As the company continues to seek a replacement for its top executive, it is bringing on four new corporate-level leaders to “support the rapid implementation of (a) market-focused model and a 100-day plan to grow revenue, reduce costs, and streamline the decision-making process.”

Melissa Powell, most recently of the New York-based Allure Group, will assume the position of chief operating officer. Powell has driven specialized programs, a culturally sensitive approach, significant technology changes, and an environment of compassion and comfort, the company said. The approach dramatically reduced readmission rates, bolstered census successes, turned around surveys in homes, and increased star ratings. Powell was a 2021 McKnight’s Women of Distinction Hall of Honor inductee.

Orrin Feingold, CFA, joins Genesis as the new chief financial officer. Feingold was previously CFO for ComplexCare Solutions, which provided home-based services for patients with chronic illnesses and at Prudential Healthcare.

Current senior vice president-general counsel Mike Sherman will take on an expanded strategic role as the executive vice president and chief legal officer. Genesis called Sherman a “well-respected liaison to the board.” 

Finally, Susan Overton, current senior vice president-deputy general counsel  for risk and litigation, will assume the role of general counsel. 

Leaving are: Chief Operating Officer Paul Bach; Chief Nursing Officer JoAnne Reifsnyder; and Chief Financial Officer Tom DiVittorio. Bach and Reifsnyder will depart Dec. 1, 2021, while DiVittorio will remain on board through January.

Shift to market-focused model

In a press release, Genesis said the team would usher in a shift to a “market-focused model” designed to build out a “vertically integrated community-based healthcare system in every market, supported by centralized resources.”

The goal is to drive community integration and long-term performance.

Under the market-focused model, each center will be supported by a specific market team whose sole purpose is to help the center succeed in better serving residents and patients and driving improvements,” Genesis said.

“We are excited to move Genesis to the market-focused model,” David Harrington, the company’s executive board chairman said in a statement. “I have spent much of my career building this framework and have successfully utilized this strategy to drive performance within other organizations. The company’s new and existing leadership will continue to move aggressively to drive improvement and results.”

Turbulent times

Genesis has struggled financially and operationally since longtime CEO George V. Hager Jr. retired in early January. Former Board Chairman Robert “Bob” H. Fish was immediately appointed as the company’s new CEO until Wilson’s hiring in March.

The Kennett Square, PA-based company hired Wilson, who with the help of his firm MAEVA, was tasked with turning around the company after months of financial uncertainty exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Genesis in March voluntarily delisted its common stock from the New York Stock Exchange as part of a three-part restructuring plan to improve the company’s financial and operational stability damaged by the public health crisis.

Wilson was touted as a “turnaround specialist” with a “successful history of rapidly transforming businesses, driving significant improvements in customer service and unlocking value.”