SANTA FE — Lillian Montoya will take over as the new president and CEO of Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center in June.
Her appointment as the first woman to lead the hospital, announced Monday, comes as current CEO Patrick Carrier is retiring after 43 years in the health care industry. Carrier has run the Christus St. Vincent operation, Santa Fe’s largest private sector employer, since November 2015.
“I am incredibly honored for the responsibility, and at the same time I’m honored to have this opportunity to take care of this precious resource,” Montoya told the Journal Monday.
Montoya, currently Christus St. Vincent’s current chief operating officer, is an Albuquerque native who has lived in the Santa Fe area for 25 years.
Montoya has served as COO since early 2017. She joined the hospital, which was founded by Sisters of Charity nuns in 1865, as a board of directors member in 2010 and later served as the board’s chair. In 2013, she became vice president for public policy and stakeholder engagement and then in 2016 took over as chief administrative officer.
Montoya cited accomplishments during her time with the hospital that she says have improved the patient experience and the administration’s engagement with the health care system’s employees. Specifically, she cited 50 community conversations that she helped organize about three years ago that led to the creation of the new all-private room Frost Pavilion wing as well as the hiring of a patient billing advocate and patient ambassadors.
“As we go forward, I envision we continue to do those things that allow us to get feedback from the very people we’re caring for,” Montoya said.
Her resume also includes leadership roles in the local nonprofit sector, business and state government. She was director of community programs for Los Alamos National Laboratory from 2004-2007, executive director of the Regional Development Corporation from 2000-2004, and from 1996 to 2000 she was the deputy director of the New Mexico Commission of Higher Education.
Montoya will assume her new position June 15.