No Little Town Blues

For Baptist Health President Bill Brown

When you talk with Baptist Health West Regional Executive Bill Brown about his life pre-Paducah, you tend to imagine Frank Sinatra gently crooning his signature tune, “New York, New York,” in the background. Bill lends credence to the famous lyrics, “If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere.”

brown in front of hospitalA native of New York City, Brown’s career has taken him on a trek about the country, and he has left each healthcare facility and each community he has been associated with better than he found it.

He developed a love for the Midwest while attending Campion, a Jesuit preparatory school in Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin. He completed his formal education in and around New York City, where he received a BA in Economics from Fordham University and an MBA from Iona College. He also earned a teaching certificate at Fordham and is certified to teach in New York. He had been teaching at a New York City public high school for 18 months before reading in the morning newspaper that 600 teachers were being laid off during a New York City budget crisis. He was one of them.

As successful people tend to do, Bill views what many would perceive as a negative event as a positive—and the pivotal point in his career. It led him to a position in a large New York City hospital, where he started at the ground level and worked his way up. Along the way, he learned the fundamentals, as well as the nuances of healthcare management, providing him a rock solid foundation on which to build a successful career in the ever-changing world of healthcare.

When asked what has motivated him throughout his career, Bill says, “Early in my career, I was driven by personal and professional development and a desire to succeed. Now, I love to make an impact on communities I am privileged to serve.”

Bill spent 20 years of his 35-year career in Louisville. Perhaps his most gratifying personal development occurred in the Bluegrass state, where he met his wife, Mickey, also an accomplished professional. It was in Louisville where the Browns adopted their two children, Blaine and Katie, from South Korea.

bill brown color 72Bill is happy to be a part of Baptist Health, serving not only as the West regional executive but also as president of Baptist

Health Paducah. Baptist Health Paducah currently employs 1,750 people, making it one of the region’s largest employers with a $75 million annual payroll representing 5 percent of all wages and salaries in McCracken County. An additional 90 jobs will be created, generating an additional $6 million in estimated annual salaries and benefits, with the addition of a new Long Term Acute Care Hospital, or “hospital within a hospital,” to provide care for the sickest patients, saving 800 families a year from traveling outside the area for care.

Bill is excited about being in Paducah and for the future of Baptist Health Paducah. He and Mickey have become involved in many community efforts and organizations, including the Paducah Symphony Orchestra and the United Way. They are parishioners of St. Thomas More Catholic Church.

They just can’t relate to those “little town blues” referred to in Sinatra’s “New York, New York.”

Or as he puts it, “The community embraced us, and we are delighted to embrace the community.”