June 30, 2017
Today we have the bittersweet privilege of saying goodbye to Jim Fiorenzo on his last day of work. After 42 years of devoted service to Hamot, it is safe to say that we will all miss him very much.
Jim spent the first 12 years of his career in Hamot’s pharmacy where he was promoted to assistant director. He and his team worked diligently to change the dynamics of pharmacy services, and they successfully moved to a 24-hour model, added several new services, and started a residency program. “We were like family,” said Jim in an interview. “We had a lot of good times together because there was such camaraderie between us.” Jim highlighted memories he had of employee softball leagues, Christmas parties, and Corporator dinners, and he recounted how different things were back then — especially when it came to smoking in the hospital!
In 1986, Jim was recruited to start Great Lakes Home Healthcare, which was designed as Hamot’s regional provider of homecare services. Jim grew it into a $23 million company during his 18 years as president, and vastly expanded its team and services. In 2004, Jim was recruited back to the main hospital as the vice president of outpatient services. He was promoted to senior vice president in 2006, followed by another promotion to chief operating officer just one year later.
As COO, Jim took philanthropy under his wing and soon hired our very own Boo Hagerty to run the Foundation. “Jim was the first leader at Hamot who made philanthropy a part of the strategic plan,” said Boo, “and through that, he was able to fund capital needs that couldn’t be supported by the hospital’s budget.”
But Jim knew that it was important for the Foundation to support community health initiatives outside of the hospital, too, which is something that still sets Hamot Health Foundation apart from other hospital foundations today. In fact, under Jim’s guidance, we learned how to combine the priorities of the hospital and the community together in projects like school-based health care, Eagle’s Nest, and Project Search.
In 2012, Jim was promoted to his current role as president of UPMC Hamot where he has led the organization through a wide variety of new endeavors. Between creating new hospital affiliations, planning a new building project, achieving Magnet designation, uniting the most cohesive medical staff ever, developing our status as a regional referral hub, investing in high-end critical care medicine, and advancing specialties so patients don’t need to travel outside of Erie to receive care, Jim has excelled in his leadership of UPMC Hamot.
Moving forward, he hopes that the hospital and Foundation will continue to work collaboratively to advance health care in our community, especially with the increased support of UPMC Hamot’s 3,600 employees. “Philanthropy has become a major focus of the organization now,” Jim commented, “and looking forward, we know that philanthropy will have a huge part in UPMC Hamot’s future projects.”
Jim says that the thing he will cherish the most about his career are the people he’s had the privilege of interacting with over the years. To so many of us, Jim has been an incredibly talented leader, mentor, colleague, and friend. At the end of the day, it is his dedication, insight, compassion, and loyalty that he will be remembered by.
Needless to say, we are so thankful for Jim’s investment in UPMC Hamot, and we wish him all the best in his retirement!