Susan L. Davis, RN, EdD
Susan L. Davis, EdD, RN, is chief executive officer of Sacred Heart Health System in Pensacola, Florida, which is a member of Ascension Health. She provides strategic and operational leadership for this system. As Ascension’s Market Leader for the Florida and Alabama Gulf Coast ministries, she promotes strategic alignment among the health ministries within the Florida and Alabama Gulf Coast markets with Ascension Health on issues related to mission and values.
Prior to coming to Sacred Heart, Dr. Davis served as CEO of St. Vincent’s Health Services for ten years. Under her leadership, Davis oversaw a $160 million dollar master facility plan, which concluded in 2013 with the renovation of the St. Vincent’s Medical Center lobby, and which was supported by a $60 million capital campaign. Major components of the project included the Elizabeth Pfriem SWIM Center for Cancer Care, which represented the largest expansion project in St. Vincent’s history, and the Michael J. Daly Center for Emergency and Trauma Care, which opened in early 2010, and tripled the size of the emergency department.
Dr. Davis also presided over the opening of the region’s most advanced operating suites and intensive care units, and launched the most ambitious technology upgrade in the Medical Center’s history. Her commitment to patient safety and excellent outcomes has made her a change agent at St. Vincent’s and within the healthcare industry. Her work in establishing a culture of safety and “high reliability” at St. Vincent’s has led the organization to national recognition including the Leapfrog “A” safety award, Joint Commission Top Performer and Nursing Magnet designations, and U.S. News & World Report’s” Best Hospitals” recognition.
With Davis at the helm, in 2013 St. Vincent’s established an affiliation with the MD Anderson Cancer Network, a program of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, the leading cancer center in the U.S. She also played a significant role in St. Vincent’s selection as the primary clinical partner for the new Frank H. Netter School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University. The school will focus on training primary care physicians to meet a growing shortage nationally, and admitted its first class in August, 2013.
Prior to joining St. Vincent’s in 2004, Dr. Davis had most recently served as President/Chief Executive Officer at Vassar Brothers Medical Center in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. as the capstone to her 18-year career there.
She received a Bachelor of Science in nursing from Mount Saint Mary College, Newburgh, N.Y., a Master of Arts in nursing administration and a Doctorate of Education with an emphasis in management from Columbia University. She is a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.
Dr. Davis has received both local and national recognition for her commitment to the community and to volunteerism. She has been recognized for her service with a number of organizations including the United Way, Hospice, and the American Cancer Society in New York State and Connecticut.