1. News
  2. /
  3. Health

Bayfront Health system leader departs after 18 months on the job

CEO Joseph Mullany said he resigned, becoming the latest executive to depart the bay area network of seven hospitals.
Joseph Mullany says he is stepping down as regional president and CEO of Bayfront Health. [Courtesy of Bayfront Health] [Bayfront Health]
Published Aug. 21
Updated Aug. 21

ST. PETERSBURG — The regional leader of the Bayfront Health network of seven hospitals is leaving.

Joseph Mullany told the Tampa Bay Times that he resigned on Wednesday after 18 months as regional president and chief executive officer.

He was hired in February 2018 to oversee all of the company’s regional hospitals along the Interstate 75 corridor, stretching from Venice to Brooksville. During his short tenure, he became acting chief executive of the health system’s flagship hospital, Bayfront Health St. Petersburg, and battled with St. Petersburg City Council members over charity care and other issues.

Mullany was responsible for the strategic development of Bayfront Health and management support to its network of hospitals. His departure is the latest in a series of abrupt leadership changes and turmoil at Bayfront Health.

His departure comes just two weeks after a contentious St. Petersburg City Council meeting when members asked hospital leadership tough questions about its finances and the quality of care it was providing to the needy.

RELATED STORY: Bayfront Health St. Petersburg dogged by questions about finances, patient care

Mullany, 52, said he plans to return to Michigan to spend more time with his children.

“My family never moved down,” he said. "The St. Petersburg hospital is in good hands and it’s doing better than when I first came here. I see a good path for it going forward.”

Company spokeswoman Tomi Galin confirmed his resignation.

“We appreciate Joe’s leadership and contributions over the last 18 months and wish him well. Bayfront Health Network will continue to be supported by Kim Elyanow, regional CFO, and Dr. Suzanne White, regional chief medical officer,” Galin said in an email. "Bayfront’s hospital CEOs and other leaders throughout the network remain focused on supporting the delivery of quality care for patients and implementing operational and strategic initiatives.”

Community Health Systems, which owns all Bayfront Health hospitals, is one of the nation’s largest owners and operators of hospitals. The company has struggled financially in recent years, posting heavy net losses quarter after quarter and has sold dozens of under-performing hospitals from its portfolio, such as selling Bayfront Health Dade City hospital to AdventHealth last year.

During Mullany’s tenure, Bayfront Health’s partnership with the University of South Florida’s medical school was terminated. And over the past year, the hospital laid off around 50 employees.

Mullany also shed new light on Bayfront Health St. Petersburg’s last shakeup. In February, the company said the hospital’s former chief executive officer John McLain and chief financial officer Pamela Modisett had resigned. But Mullany on Wednesday said he fired them.

Both have since been replaced. Sharon Hayes, a registered nurse with executive leadership experience at other Tampa Bay area hospitals, was hired as CEO last month.

Community Health Systems bought Bayfront Health St. Petersburg, once known as Bayfront Medical Center, in 2013 from another hospital chain, Health Management Associates. Bayfront Health is the city’s oldest and largest hospital, and a Level 2 trauma center. It has a long history of serving the city’s most vulnerable residents.

“Mr. Mullany’s departure does not resolve the concerns I have about our city’s asset,” City Council member Amy Foster said. “While I hope his next executive team is more collaborative with its landlord the constant churn of leadership continues to give me pause. The questions left unanswered at our last meeting still need to be addressed.”

RELATED STORY: Bayfront Health St. Petersburg hires new CEO

Prior to coming to Florida, Mullany served as president and CEO of the Detroit Medical Center, an eight-hospital academic system in Michigan, for four years. There he oversaw the hospital system during a state and federal investigation following the publication of a series of stories by the Detroit News exposing complaints over improperly sterilized instruments.


  1. FILE  - In this Aug. 28, 2019, file photo, a man exhales while smoking an e-cigarette in Portland, Maine. Walmart says it will stop selling electronic cigarettes at its namesake stores and Sam's Clubs following a string of illnesses and deaths related to vaping.  The nation's largest retailer said Friday, Sept. 20 that it will complete its exit from e-cigarettes after selling through current inventory. It cited growing federal, state and local regulatory complexity regarding vaping products. ROBERT F. BUKATY  |  AP
    The nation’s largest retailer said Friday that it will complete its exit from e-cigarettes after selling through current inventory.
  2. Erik Maltais took an unconventional path to becoming CEO of Immertec, a virtual reality company aimed at training physicians remotely. He dropped out of school as a teenager, served in Iraq in the Marine Corps and eventually found his way to Tampa. OCTAVIO JONES   |   TIMES  |  Times
    Software from Immertec can bring physicians into an operating room thousands of miles away.
  3. Homeowner Cheryl Murdoch, 59, explains the workings of the Philips Smart Mirror in her bathroom. Murdoch and her husband live in the Epperson neighborhood in Wesley Chapel, home of the Crystal Lagoon, where some residents are piloting new health technologies inside their homes. SCOTT KEELER  |   Times
    In Pasco’s Crystal Lagoon community, AdventHealth and Metro Development Group are testing in-home technology aimed at keeping people away from the hospital.
  4. Dr. Paul McRae was the first black chief of staff at Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg. Dr. McRae died on September 13, 2019. He was photographed here in the Tampa Bay Times photo studio for the 2008 Dr. Carter G Woodson Museum's "Legends Honorees" gala. BOYZELL HOSEY  |  BOYZELL HOSEY  |  Times
    ‘His extraordinary example paved the way for so many others.’
  5. Michael Jenkins spent seven days at North Tampa Behavioral Health last July. Since then, he says his three children have been afraid he’ll leave and not come home. JOHN PENDYGRAFT   |   Times
    The patients have no choice, and the hospital is making millions.
  6. Samantha Perez takes a call for someone in need of counseling at the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay earlier this year. The center handles calls dealing with suicide, sexual assault, homelessness and other traumatic situations. They also do outreach and counseling, and operate Transcare, an ambulance service. JONES, OCTAVIO  |  Tampa Bay Times
    Florida’s mental health care system saves lives.
  7. The Florida Department of Health in Hillsborough County identified a positive case of hepatitis A in a food service worker at Hamburger Mary's in Ybor City on Oct. 22, 2018. [JOSH FIALLO | Times] JOSH FIALLO | TIMES  |  JOSH FIALLO | Times
    Slightly more than 200,000 people have been vaccinated this year — a huge jump from the 49,324 people vaccinated in all of 2018.
  8. FILE - In this Feb. 20, 2014, file photo, a patron exhales vapor from an e-cigarette at a store in New York. Under the Trump administration, former FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb kicked off his tenure in 2017 with the goal of making cigarettes less addictive by drastically cutting nicotine levels. He also rebooted the agency’s effort to ban menthol flavoring in cigarettes. But those efforts have been largely eclipsed by the need to respond to an unexpected explosion in e-cigarette use by teens. AP
    Hundreds of people nationwide have come down with lung illness related to vaping.
  9. This May 2018, photo provided by Joseph Jenkins shows his son, Jay, in the emergency room of the Lexington Medical Center in Lexington, S.C. Jay Jenkins suffered acute respiratory failure and drifted into a coma, according to his medical records, after he says he vaped a product labeled as a smokable form of the cannabis extract CBD. Lab testing commissioned as part of an Associated Press investigation into CBD vapes showed the cartridge that Jenkins says he puffed contained a synthetic marijuana compound blamed for at least 11 deaths in Europe. JOSEPH JENKINS  |  AP
    The vapor that Jenkins inhaled didn’t relax him. After two puffs, he ended up in a coma.
  10. H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute is the centerpiece of Project Arthur, an 800-acre corporate park that could include up 24 million square feet of office and industrial space on nearly 7,000 acres of what is now ranch land, but targeted for development in central Pasco. Times
    The H. Lee Moffitt facility is the centerpiece of an economic development effort in a proposed 800-acre corporate park.