Talbot Hospice is proud to welcome Christopher Chekouras as its new Executive Director. Chekouras joined the organization on August 17th and most recently served as the Interim President and Chief Executive Officer of Saint Agnes Healthcare, a member of Ascension Health, in Baltimore.
“We are delighted to welcome Chris to Talbot Hospice as our Executive Director. His career as a healthcare executive, coupled with his passion for serving the community make him uniquely qualified to lead the organization forward, while continuing to provide exemplary service to our patients and families,” said Sheila Monahan, Talbot Hospice Board President.
Assuming the top leadership role at Talbot Hospice represents a new personal and professional chapter for Chekouras as he “retires” from a three-decade-long career in hospital management and administration and transitions into hospice and palliative care.
“The opportunity to join the Talbot Hospice team, is in many ways the perfect opportunity, at the perfect time in my life,” said Chekouras. “It is an opportunity to combine my passion for serving the community and leading an organization dedicated to caring for some of the most vulnerable members of our community in the final stages of their life. It is a great honor being asked to serve as the next Executive Director, and I look forward to sharing my experience and continuing my learning.”
Chekouras is a former board member of Samaritan Healthcare and Hospice in New Jersey and has personally experienced the comfort hospice care brings to patients and their families at the end of life. He has a passion and tremendous amount of respect for those serving in hospice care, and also understands the challenges of their work.
When asked about Talbot Hospice’s greatest assets, Chekouras points to the support the organization receives from the community, its talented and compassionate staff and the dedication of its board members. He is committed to building on the organization’s success by strengthening relationships and partnerships throughout the community with other healthcare and related organizations, which is especially important in the new normal created by COVID-19.
“A challenge all healthcare providers face is learning how to thrive in a time of great uncertainty and change. COVID has impacted us all and will continue to influence how we all work and live,” shared Chekouras.
“Thanks to the efforts of our transitional leadership team of Molly Kirsch, Amy Stitcher and Mary Jane Meintzer, our commitment and care of our patients and their families has never wavered during this pandemic. As an organization, we are well-positioned to start our next chapter amidst these uncharted waters with Chris at the helm,” said Sheila Monahan, Board President.
In addition to beginning his new role at Talbot Hospice, Chekouras is also looking forward to being a full-time resident of Maryland’s Eastern Shore.
“Twenty-seven years ago, I married the love of my life, Jennifer. A year later, while celebrating our first wedding anniversary, we visited and fell in love with Maryland’s Eastern Shore,” said Chekouras. “Together, we’ve raised two wonderful daughters and have lived in Maryland, New Jersey and Maine to support the advancement of my career. All through the years, we always knew we would one day return to Maryland with the hope that we could fulfill our dream of living on the Eastern Shore. Several years ago, we acted on that dream by purchasing our very last “forever home” on the banks of the Chester River in Chestertown. Having lived apart for much of the past three years, I most look forward to returning home each evening after work and having dinner with my family.”
Talbot Hospice is planning several virtual “meet and greet” events with Chekouras for the organization’s stakeholders and the larger community over the coming months.