Medical center names new administrator |

Medical center names new administrator

Cliff Thompson

Tom Zellers, 56, has been named the new president and CEO of the Vail Valley Medical Center.

Zellers comes to Vail after 16 years at the 592-bed, 2,200-employee Deaconness Hospital in Spokane, Wash., where he was chief operating officer.

“What attracted me here is the opportunity work in a complex and respected organization with world-class services,” Zellers said. “It’s clear that the Vail Valley Medical Center and the people I met have tremendous pride in their medical center and in their community. There’s real ownership there.”

Zellers will be meeting with VVMC staff and management later today. He’s scheduled to start work at the hospital Oct. 1, filling the vacancy created by the departure earlier this year of Cliff Eldredge.

“Tom brings an exceptional ability to build consensus, a proven record of strong operations management and program growth and perhaps most importantly, a historical commitment to employee and physician relationships,” said Ed O’Brien, chairman of the board of directors for the hospital.

“There’s an opportunity here to build upon an outstanding organization and develop service partnerships, relationships with other providers and with physicians,” Zellers said. “The key is to build trust and building personal relationships with clinicians and employees.”

Prior to his time at Deaconess, which during his tenure was named one of the nation’s top-100 hospitals four times, he worked at the Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor, Maine, and the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle. Prior to that, he was a Navy pilot, achieving the rank of Lieutenant Commander during the Vietnam war.

He holds a master’s degree in health services administration from the University of Washington in Seattle and a bachelor’s in economics and business administration from the University of Virginia, where he earned academic and athletic honors.

Zellers and his wife, Kerry, an acute care nurse, have two children: Mary Kate, 14 who will attend Battle Mountain High School; and Scott, who will be attending the University of Oregon.

The Zellers’ enjoy skiing and other outdoor activities.

Cliff Thompson can be reached at 970-949-0555 x450 or

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