EVERETT — Darren Redick began his tenure with Providence as a wide-eyed civil engineer, fresh out of college, assisting with the redevelopment of the health care company’s campus in Anchorage, Alaska.
This week, more than three decades later, Redick, 60, will take over as CEO of Providence Health & Services for Northwest Washington.
It’s been a long road, one that Redick said he didn’t expect, winding from Alaska to Seattle to Everett and, now, his new role as the organization’s local leader.
“It is very humbling and an honor to be in a role like this where you are entrusted with so much and something that is so meaningful to a community,” Redick said.
He will lead the Northwest Washington service area of Providence that includes the regional medical center Everett and Providence Medical Group Northwest, which serves Snohomish, Skagit, Whatcom, Island and San Juan counties.
Kim Williams, Providence’s current regional CEO, announced her retirement earlier this year after four decades with the nonprofit, including four years as the leader.
“I am thrilled for Darren to be named chief executive and for our caregivers and the community to get to know him even more,” Williams said in an email. “I’ve had the privilege of working closely with Darren for years and cannot think of a better person to lead the organization. He’s a gifted leader who is laser-focused on Providence’s mission, our patients, and our caregivers.”
Redick said that watching Providence’s mission-driven work changed his career path when he was a 20-something assisting with project engineering in Alaska. He accepted a job in the late 1980s as an operations director on the Anchorage campus.
“I realized the work was bigger than me and bigger than all of us and it was really important work,” Redick said. “It certainly spoke to me as where I wanted to spend my career.”
In 1995, he transitioned to Seattle, where he assisted with support services and later led facilities and construction work. By 2009, his career brought him to Everett, where he familiarized himself with the service area and became Providence’s local director of operations and vice president of professional and support services.
Redick was at the helm when the 12-story, $460 million Providence Cymbaluk Medical Tower was built at the medical center’s Colby campus in 2011.
“The result of the project has really allowed us to grow our services and care in our community in a way that we had never done before,” Redick said. “There is all sorts of critical care that can happen in Snohomish County, that in the past, before the tower, was occurring in Seattle.”
Philanthropy and community support are the only way a venture like the medical tower is possible, Redick said.
He has spent a decade building relationships as a member of the board of the American Red Cross of Snohomish County and as a trustee for the YMCA’s local governing board.
Redick said he plans to prioritize making connections at Providence that will expand the health care network.
“The more that we can bring the right services locally, the better care we are going to have for our community,” he said.
Redick takes the job during a time of recovery. In January 2020, the first known U.S. resident with COVID-19 arrived at Providence in Everett, and the pandemic worsened from there.
As the region CEO, Redick said, the focus will be supporting health care workers who gave their all on the frontlines during this crisis.
“We really want to pay attention to make sure we are able to ensure that our caregivers are able to get a breath and try to work ourselves back to some kind of normalcy,” he said.
In total, the Providence St. Joseph health system employs 120,000 people in Alaska, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas and Washington.
Redick emphasized improving health care equity in this region. He said it starts by understanding the communities Providence serves and the care disparities that are resulting in worse health outcomes.
“We want health for everybody and that is not just measured by the total population, it is also measured by different areas of our community, as well,” Redick said. “What might work broadly for the majority of the community may not work for different subsections, and we need to apply strategies that are targeted for our communities and what they need to be more successful.”
Ian Davis-Leonard: 425-339-3448; firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @IanDavisLeonard.