NHRMC releases list of Partnership Advisory Group members who will guide potential sale process

Nine of the twenty one members of the Partnership Advisory Group, which will guide the potential sale process of the New Hanover Regional Medical Center. (Port City Daily photo / NHRMC)
Nine of the twenty one members of the Partnership Advisory Group, which will guide the potential sale process of the New Hanover Regional Medical Center. (Port City Daily photo / NHRMC)

WILMINGTON — Ahead of Tuesday’s public hearing on the ongoing potential sale process of the New Hanover Regional Medical Center (NHRMC), officials have released the full list of Partnership Advisory Group members.

Related: Timeline, transparency, public input: More information on potential NHRMC sale, some questions remain

The Partnership Advisory Group (PAG) is a 21-member body that will advise both the NHRMC Board of Trustees and New Hanover County on the potential sale process, starting with the crafting of a Request for Proposals (RFP) that the county will send to at least five healthcare companies. The PAG will also advise as proposals for a merger, sale, or other partnership for NHRMC are considered.


“Membership includes nine community members appointed by County Manager Chris Coudriet and NHRMC President and CEO John Gizdic, five physicians selected by NHRMC medical staff leadership, and five members of NHRMC’s Board of Trustees selected by the trustees. Coudriet and Gizdic will serve as co-chairs of the committee,” according to a joint announcement from NHRMC and New Hanover County.

According to officials, “membership includes representatives with experience in various sectors, including nonprofit, business, faith, finance and nursing, in addition to physicians with different specialties [who have admitting privileges at NHRMC].”

Community members include former Wilmington Mayor Spence Broadhurst, developer and investment manager Bill Cameron, former GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy Board Chairman Jack Fuller, Pastor of the New Beginning Christian Church in Wilmington and former Major in the U.S. Marine Corps Robert Campbell, Harrelson Center Executive Director Meade Horton Van Pelt, and Northside Bridge Builders Founder Evelyn Bryant, who works with a number of Wilmington-area non-profit.

The hospital is hosting a complete list, along with biographies, on a website dedicated to issues around the potential sale (you can find the member bios here). The nine community member biographies provided by NHRMC appear below.

PAG community member biographies

Virginia Adams, PhD, RN

Dr. Virginia W. Adams, PhD, RN, FAAN is a registered nurse and nurse education program consultant whose experience has spanned over four decades as faculty, department chair and dean. She became a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing in 2015, received the Distinguished Nurse Educator Award from Winston Salem State University in 2004, and was honored with the Distinguished Contributions to Nursing Education Award from UNC Chapel Hill in 2000, among numerous other honors and awards. She currently serves as vice chair of the New Hanover County Health & Human Services Board, co-chair of the American Academy of Nursing, Diversity & Inclusivity Committee, chair of the Subcommittee on Physical & Mental Health Awareness and Involvement, and is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.’s Wilmington NC Alumnae Chapter. She was the inaugural chair of the Core Steering Group of the International Council of Nurses Education Network, dean of the UNCW School of Nursing for 14 years, a former member of New Hanover Regional Medical Center’s Board of Trustees, and previously served on the New Hanover County Board of Health. Adams lived in Wilmington for nearly 20 years prior to moving to Washington, DC in 2013; she returned to the area in 2017.

“Outcomes from the Partnership Advisory Group will impact all citizens in our community for decades to come,” she said. “I am interested in working with our community to develop positive outcomes for all populations served by our healthcare system. It’s important to ensure our future health care delivery system effectively integrates social care into health care to reduce health disparities in the community.”

Spence Broadhurst

Mr. Broadhurst is the President of the Eastern NC Region for First National Bank, coordinating corporate and business banking, integration of sales, and the overall business strategy for the bank’s eastern NC region. He currently serves on the board of the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina. He was twice elected mayor of the City of Wilmington, serving from 2003 to 2006, is a former commissioner of the North Carolina Banking Commission, and a former trustee for North Carolina Agriculture and Technology State University. He has also served on the boards of the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, Wilmington Film Commission, Wilmington Business Development, and the Wake County Board of Health. Broadhurst first moved to Wilmington in 1997 and lived here for 9 years before moving to Greensboro; he moved back to Wilmington in 2017.

“New Hanover Regional Medical Center is one of the most prized assets in our community,” he said. “I believe that the future of our hospital and our community’s health care is the most important decision in recent history for our community. I consider it an honor to bring my experience as a former mayor of the City of Wilmington and as a regional bank executive to the Partnership Advisory Group.”

Evelyn Bryant

Ms. Bryant is the founder of Northside Bridge Builders and has worked as a legal assistant for over 24 years. In 2019 she was named WILMA’s Woman to Watch in the nonprofit/volunteer category and in 2017 was selected as a Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen of the Lower Cape Fear honoree and recipient of the Phenomenal Woman Award. She is a community activist and serves as chair of the joint county-city Community Relations Advisory Committee, secretary of the New Hanover County Board of Elections, and vice president of the YWCA Lower Cape Fear Board of Directors. Bryant is also a board member of LINC Inc., the Blue Ribbon Commission (BRC) on the Prevention of Youth Violence, and the city’s Commission on African-American History, among others. She has previously served as a board member and chair for New Hanover County Social Services and as past chair of the BRC’s Community Council focusing on health equity. Bryant was born and raised in Wilmington.

“I want to believe that I represent those persons in the community who are voiceless,” she said. “I also believe that I have the capacity to listen and look at situations from another point of view.  NHRMC can be the catalyst in creating a better more viable and sustainable community in so many aspects, health equity being one.”

Bill Cameron

Mr. Cameron co-founded and is President of Cameron Management, Inc., an investment management company with a focus on real estate development, brokerage, and property management. He was a founding member and director of Port City Capital Bank and director of Crescent State Bank following its acquisition of Port City Capital Bank in 2006. Cameron currently serves on the board of directors for Live Oak Bancshares, Cape Fear Memorial Foundation, and Champion McDowell Davis Foundation. He has previously served on the board of directors of the UNC Health Care System, Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, Cape Fear Memorial Hospital, among many others. He is also past president of the NC Azalea Festival and has served as a deacon and elder for St. Andrew’s Covenant Presbyterian Church. Cameron is a native of Wilmington.

“My desire to serve on the Partnership Advisory Group comes from my interest in helping to facilitate having the best quality health care possible in our region over the long term,” he said. “It will be important to understand how the delivery and the economics of health care are changing, and what, if anything, NHRMC needs to do differently to best adapt to these changes and best meet the needs of its patients.”

Robert Campbell

Mr. Campbell is the pastor of New Beginning Christian Church in Wilmington and is a former Major in the United States Marine Corps, where he served for 26 years. He is an entrepreneur, investor and small business owner, and currently serves as the President of the Wilmington Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance, Chairman of the East Carolina Community Development Inc. Board of Directors, and a member of the advisory board at BB&T Bank Wilmington. Pastor Campbell brings local churches and organizations together to promote mentoring classes for entrepreneurs, improve the public school system and help the under-privileged and under-served. He moved to Wilmington in 2004 when he was called to lead New Beginning Christian Church.

“I’m naturally cautious and conservative about change,” he said. “The assurance of quality equitable and sustainable health care for ALL PEOPLE should be our priority over mere profit.”

Cedric Dickerson

Mr. Dickerson is an insurance agent working with State Farm, and serves as Vice President of State Farm Agents and Employees Political Action Committee. He is former chair and current member of the New Hanover County ABC Board and an advisory board member for the Boy Scouts of America. He has previously served as board chair of the Community Boys & Girls Club, and has served on the boards of Cape Fear Community College Foundation, Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, Cape Fear Literacy Council, and Salvation Army. Dickerson was honored in 2009 with a UNCW Watson College of Education Razor Walker Award and was inducted into the Laney Athletic Hall of Fame in 2018 for his community support and work as volunteer coach. He is a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity and has live in Wilmington for 40 years.

“I am honored to be selected as a member of the Partnership Advisory Group,” he said. “ I see my role as a conduit of information. I’m here to learn the intended goals for the potential Partnership, to listen in order to understand the proposed process as well as the diverse perspectives of the community, and ensure through my presence, that the public’s voice is heard.”

Jack Fuller

Mr. Fuller retired as Chairman of the Board of GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) in July 2011 after 38 years with GE. He previously served as President and CEO of the GEH alliance, CEO of Global Nuclear Fuels and as the CFO for GE the nuclear business. Most recently, he helped develop and implement a program with Cape Fear Community College to provide access for disadvantaged groups to the Wilson Center programs, called Broadway for a Better World, and has been engaged as an independent director of Ozz Clean Energy, Upwind Solutions and PAR Systems working on strategic, operational, and governance issues. Fuller is on the Plantation Village Board and is chairman of the board of Baltimore-based GSE Systems. He is a former member, chair and vice-chair of the NHRMC Board of Trustees and former member of the UNCW Cameron Business School Board. He has lived in Wilmington for 19 years.

“New Hanover Regional Medical Center is a critical asset for the people of New Hanover and surrounding counties,” he said. “It is essential that we carefully consider all options for the facility in order to stay contemporary with medical systems throughout the county, while maintaining the very high standard of care that exists today for our residents.”

Hannah Gage

Ms. Gage is a retired media executive and former owner of Cape Fear Broadcasting in Wilmington, where she launched 102.7 WGNI, 980 WWAV news talk radio, and Coast 97.3. She is a higher education advocate and served on the UNC Board of Governors for 16 years, including two terms as the first female chair of the board, overseeing 16 college campuses, including the North Carolina School of Science and Math, UNC Health Care, and UNC TV. Gage was inducted into the North Carolina Association of Broadcaster’s Hall of Fame in 2009, received the Governor’s Order of the Long Leaf Pine in 2012, and the UNCW Watson College of Education Razor Walker Award in 2016 for her support of public higher education. She is the current chair of the WUNC Radio Board, and has previously served as chair of the UNCW Board of Trustees as well as numerous regional and local boards. She has lived in Wilmington since 1981.

“New Hanover Regional Medical Center plays an enormous role in both the quality of life and the economic prosperity of this region,” she said. “Determining the most viable and sustainable path for its future, with a continued commitment to this community, is an important decision and will impact each of us in some way.”

Meade Van Pelt

Ms. Van Pelt is the Executive Director of the Jo Ann Carter Harrelson Center in Wilmington, a nonprofit campus that partners with other organizations to provide centralized humanitarian services. She is involved in the community through her church, International School at Gregory PTA, The Ministering Circle, the Community Counseling Center Board, and the New Hanover Disaster Coalition Steering Committee. In 2018, she received the North Carolina Attorney General’s Dogwood Award and in 2019 she received the District Attorney’s Office Service Before Self Award – both for her work in response to Hurricane Florence relief and recovery. Van Pelt was born and raised in Wilmington, and after college and starting her career, she returned in 2004.

“NHRMC is a valuable partner in the nonprofit community and impacts everyone in the region,” she said. “I appreciate the opportunity to participate with a thoughtful and transparent group of concerned citizens and to represent the nonprofit sector as we prepare for local demands, discoveries, and deliverables, particularly around social determinants of health and collective impact.”

Upcoming meeting

According to NHRMC, “Advisory members will be in attendance at New Hanover County’s public hearings, which will be held throughout the process,” including Tuesday’s hearing, held at Snipes Academy of Arts & Design, 2150 Chestnut St.

The complete member roster is:

Community Members
Virginia Adams, PhD, RN
Spence Broadhurst
Evelyn Bryant
Bill Cameron
Robert Campbell
Cedric Dickerson
Jack Fuller
Hannah Gage
Meade Van Pelt

Physicians
Sandra Hall, MD
Chuck Kays, MD
Michael Papagikos, MD
Joseph Pino, MD
Mary Rudyk, MD

Trustees
Barb Biehner
Brian Eckel
Tony McGhee
Jason Thompson
David Williams

Co-Chairs
John Gizdic
Chris Coudriet

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