Leadership: Class of 2020

Even amid a pandemic, the Capstone Leadership Institute delivered some valuable lessons for its inaugural class

As if an inaugural year of a leadership development program wasn’t exciting enough, the class members, lecturers and organizers of the Capstone Leadership Institute happened to have one other dynamic make the launch a one-of-a-kind – the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fortunately, the schedule and curriculum had been developed on the front end. And, the Institute’s pre-determined virtual format also worked well and just so happened to coincide with many workplaces transitioning to virtual.

Angie Miller, Class Valedictorian

“The virtual piece became very natural,” said Kristin Scott, senior director of human resources & member services, Capstone Health Alliance.

The Leadership Institute’s origins come from the Capstone Learning Academy, which offered module-based courses for members on topics and concepts such as value analysis and Supply Chain 101. Feedback for the modules was positive, especially as introductory courses for team members who were new to the healthcare supply chain.

But there was also a desire among the more seasoned supply chain leaders for more leadership development training. Capstone created a member-led council made up of high-level supply chain leaders to talk about what the organization could do to meet the needs of its members who were asking for more of a leadership approach to the Learning Academy. From those conversations, the Capstone Leadership Institute was born.

Capstone Leadership Institute courses covered key leadership topics from subject matter experts as the course leaders. Sections included hospital operations, supply chain operations, value analysis, finance & business law and professional development.

Rick Haines, CLI Class MVP, Trivergent Health Alliance, with Dr. Michael Staley

While the Learning Academy was widely available to Capstone members, because the Leadership Institute would be geared toward more the tenured supply chain leader, the council decided the inaugural Leadership Institute class should have an application process. “We really wanted this to be a coveted group,” said Scott. Of the applicant pool, 17 were chosen. They made a year commitment to attend each meeting virtually at the specified time and complete the coursework required.

“Another reason for the application process was we wanted to make sure the hospitals were behind their employees in doing this type of curriculum,” said Scott. “Student’s courses were offered at a specified time, Tuesday from 3:00-4:00 p.m. So every Tuesday, the student would need to be available. We wanted to get that buy-in from the facility for their employee to take part.”

A year like no other

While Capstone did postpone a couple of classes as supply chain leaders adjusted to the new demands and work dynamics, the class members communicated that they were eager to pick the classes back up. Only one class member dropped out due to unforeseen circumstances. “For them, it was an escape in their week with everything else that was going on, to focus on something that wasn’t necessarily COVID related,” said Scott.

“I am very impressed with the students, staff and the subject matter experts who participated in the inaugural Capstone Supply Chain Leadership Institute class this year. They fought through COVID and persevered,” said Larry Kennedy, council chair for the Leadership Institute. “I truly believe that everyone gained valuable insight throughout the year. Everyone contributed in some way ultimately resulting in a first-class experience that will positively reflect on each one of their respective organizations.”

Janet Bezinque, director, value analysis, Baptist Health Jacksonville (Coastal Community Health), found the experience in the Capstone Leadership Institute to be time well spent. “Working in Value Analysis, coming from the clinical side left some gaps in my understanding and knowledge of the other areas in Supply Chain. CLI put the puzzle pieces together for me! I highly recommend for anyone in supply chain who would like to enhance their knowledge and become a stronger supply chain leader.”

DJ Lofton, capital buyer, UNC Lenoir Health Care, said the platform “created an environment of learning amongst one another in a nurturing setting.”

Plans are already underway for the 2021 Leadership Institute. Capstone will move from a webinar format to a Cisco platform with WebEx so members can see individual faces for better interaction and collaboration. There may be more slots available as well.

“Capstone is very proud to have developed the Leadership Institute for our membership,” said Tim Bugg, president and CEO of Capstone Health Alliance. “Education is one of the four core foundations of Capstone and is an essential part of our organization. I have always advocated for the rise of supply chain professionals to the C-Suite, and this program gives our students a strong, comprehensive overview and curriculum to prepare each for future management growth. I am extremely proud of this inaugural class, the instructors, our oversight council, Kristin Scott and our team for making this vision into reality. Together we are truly Capstone Strong!”

The 2020 Inaugural Class of the Capstone Leadership Institute

  • Janet Bezinque, Director, Value Analysis, Baptist Health Jacksonville (Coastal Community Health)
  • Barry Boast, Purchasing Manager, Jefferson Regional Medical Center
  • Lekela Collins, Purchasing Manager, Womans Hospital
  • Donna Dotson, Logistics Supervisor, AdventHealth Hendersonville
  • Jennifer Gravil, Purchasing Manager, Commonwealth Health Corporation
  • Rick Haines, Strategic Sourcing Manager, Trivergent Health Alliance
  • Howard Harper, Central Services Manager, Lenoir Memorial Hospital (UNC Lenoir Healthcare)
  • Ed Jones, Coordinator/Inventory Control, Jefferson Regional Medical Center
  • DJ Lofton, Capital Buyer, UNC Lenoir Health Care
  • Angie Miller, Clinical Sourcing & Analytics Contracts Coordinator, CaroMont Health
  • Brandi Mills, Admin. Pharmacy Technician, Beebe Healthcare
  • Matthew Price, Buyer/Freight Specialist, St. Mary’s Medical Center
  • Karyn Siegel, Vice President Materials Management & Vantage Health Group, Vantage Health Group
  • Maria Summers, National Account Manager, CHAMPS Group Purchasing
  • Donna Williamson, Manager Pharmacy Technicians/Buyer, Beebe Healthcare
  • Angela Wrigley, Director, Supply Chain Peri-Operative Services, The University of Tennessee Medical Center