HCN News & Notes

Berkshire Health Systems President and CEO Retiring After More Than 30 Years

PITTSFIELD — David Phelps, president and CEO of Berkshire Health Systems (BHS), the region’s largest employer, announced that he will leave BHS in early 2022, concluding a 31-year career of service to the local community, with 28 as the system’s chief executive.

“After engaging in thoughtful succession planning with the BHS board of trustees for the past three years and with the confidence that we now have a full complement of experienced executive leaders in place at BHS, I know that now is the right time is right for making this transition,” Phelps said.

Bart Raser, chair of the BHS board of trustees, spoke on behalf of the organization in response to Phelps’s announcement, noting that “ensuring an orderly leadership transition has been incredibly important to Dave and board members alike. We are sincerely grateful to Dave for working with us to facilitate a smooth process for his departure and are pleased that we will be able to share more about the appointment of a new CEO for Berkshire Health Systems later this week.

“Today, we would like to recognize and celebrate Dave’s tremendous accomplishments at BHS over more than 30 years,” Raser went on. “The scale of the transformation that Dave has achieved at our organization is a testament to his selfless leadership, his bright vision, and his tireless advocacy for the people of the Berkshires. There is no way to adequately thank him for all he has done to care for Berkshire County.”

Raser highlighted key successes from Phelps’s distinguished career as CEO, including rehabilitating the financial resources of the once-troubled health system, implementing substantial technological and facility improvements such as the Crane Center for Ambulatory Surgery and the BMC Cancer Center, building BHS’s affiliated long-term-care company, developing important clinical partnerships like Berkshire Medical Center’s membership in the Dana-Farber Cancer Care Collaborative, and cultivating important relationships with local and state leaders that elevated the status and reputation of Berkshire Health Systems across the Commonwealth.

“Continually developing new opportunities to care for the people of Berkshire County alongside our exceptional providers and staff at BHS has been the honor of a lifetime,” Phelps said. “I am incredibly proud of our entire organization’s commitment to service, compassion, and excellence in patient care, and I am grateful to my colleagues and my community for having entrusted me with protecting, cultivating, and advancing the BHS mission for the past 28 years.”