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Hospital Board Appoints New Member to Northern District Seat

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James "Jim" MeisterThe Sarasota County Public Hospital Board, the governing body of Sarasota Memorial Health Care System, today appointed James "Jim" Meister to Seat 1 in the Northern District. 

He will serve on the unpaid nine-member hospital board until the election in 2016, filling the seat vacated by Richard “Dick” Merritt. Last month, Dick announced that he was stepping down from the board to move back to the Midwest to be with his family. 

Jim served on the board's Audit Committee from 2010 to 2014 and currently is a member of the Mission and Planning Committee. 

He has extensive experience in strategic planning, organizational development, executive recruiting, succession planning and development of operational best practices in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors. He has held several leadership roles in health care governance, including terms as vice chairman of the board of Atlantic Health Systems, a large nonprofit health system with locations in northern and central New Jersey, and chairman of the board of Mountainside Hospital, a community-based hospital in Montclair, New Jersey. He served in top administrative and executive positions with Kings Super Markets in New Jersey, a $400-million dollar food retailer, including nine years as president and CEO. 

Currently a Licensed Real Estate Associate with Coldwell Banker in Sarasota, Jim is a member of the Finance/Audit Committee of the Senior Friendship Centers  and has served on the boards of numerous nonprofit organizations, trade associations and publicly traded companies over the years.  

A native of New Jersey, Jim received a bachelor's degree in Economics from Saint Peter's College in Jersey City, New Jersey. He has lived in Sarasota for the past 17 years. 

"It's a privilege to join the board of an organization that plays such a critical role in the health and well-being of this community" he said. "I look forward to contributing to Sarasota Memorial's future development and helping to meet the evolving health needs of the patients we serve."

At Monday's board meeting, the members presented a resolution honoring Dick Merritt's leadership over the past eight years, including two terms as chairman. 

"Dick has left a lasting mark on the health system and will be missed," said Hospital Board Chair Marguerite G. Malone, EdD. "We are fortunate to have a leader of Jim Meister's caliber to fill his seat. He has worked closely with us over the past several years as a committee member, and his experience and expertise will serve us well as we work to build on the health system's many accomplishments." 

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