(Sept. 4, 2020) – In his final President's Perspective column, Tom Bell shared his gratitude for his time as part of the Kansas Hospital Association family. In his usual humbled fashion, Tom praised the KHA membership and staff for many of the accomplishments attained during his time. While it is widely understood that a successful association must have supportive members and staff, it is equally important to have an effective leader paving the way.
Tom's passion and commitment to KHA's mission and vision were unquestionable. However, it was Tom's relationships with the KHA membership and staff that he cherished the most. He would often comment how fortunate he was to have the opportunity to interact with such great individuals. In reality, we were really the lucky ones.
To many, Tom was a mentor and confidant who was always willing to listen and share his wisdom. He had a knack to provide meaningful advice that always seemed to be spot-on. He especially enjoyed the opportunity to welcome and interact with new leaders within the state. This year, we were hopeful we would be able to recognize Tom's retirement throughout the year. In fact, in January the KHA staff coined 2020 as the "year of Tom." Unfortunately, COVID-19 trumped that.
While some of our retirement celebrations with Tom are on hold until we are able to safely reconvene in person, we did want to share with you a video tribute that expresses gratitude from a number of KHA members and health care advocates from across the country. Tom greatly appreciated your well wishes, whether in cards, emails, phone calls or in this video tribute. All of us will miss Tom, but we know he and Vicki will enjoy this next chapter of their lives.