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Hospital Leadership

Hospital Leadership

Maricopa Integrated Health System’s executive management team brings a wealth of experience in health care administration and development. The team's devoted commitment to our patients, employees and the community has resulted in a strong foundation designed to meet today's health care needs while moving toward tomorrow's innovations and breakthroughs. MIHS leadership drives the organization to exceed the expectations of our patients and improve the overall health of the community.

  • Steve Purves
    President & Chief Executive Officer

    Steve Purves became President & Chief Executive Officer of MIHS in September 2013. MIHS is our community’s public healthcare system and Maricopa County’s largest training center of physicians and other healthcare professionals. MIHS includes the Maricopa Medical Center, the Arizona Burn Center, the Arizona Children’s Center, a Level I Trauma Center, two behavioral health centers and a network of 13 neighborhood clinics that serve the entire county. Purves works with the publicly elected five-member Board of Directors, who represent the Maricopa County Special Health Care District, to plan, direct and manage the current operations, future growth and program development for MIHS.

    Purves is actively involved in the community as an ambassador for MIHS and in a variety of roles outside his health care duties. He serves on the America's Essential Hospitals' Board of Directors, Arizona Hospital and Health Care Association (AzHHA) Board, Maricopa Health Foundation Board, Arizona Chamber of Commerce Board, Arizona State University Health Advisory Board, and the Valley of the Sun United Way. Purves is also a member of Greater Phoenix Leadership (GPL). He has been elected to serve as Chairman of the AzHHA Board beginning Dec. 1, 2017 for a one-year term.

    Prior to joining MIHS, Mr. Purves served seven years as President & CEO of Munroe Regional Health System, Inc., a public, not-for-profit healthcare system that serves Marion County and North Central Florida. The healthcare system includes Munroe Regional Medical Center, a 421-bed tertiary acute care hospital (recognized year after year as one of the nation’s top 50 hospitals), a wholly owned Clinical Integration Organization, Florida’s first Free Standing Emergency Center, a Speech and Hearing Center, three Wellness and Rehabilitation Centers and various clinical joint ventures, including a long term acute care hospital, a 180-bed skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility, and a regional home healthcare service.

    From 1998 to 2006, Purves was President & CEO of the Sisters of Charity Providence Hospitals in Columbia, South Carolina. Prior to that, Purves was the Chief Operating Officer (COO) for New Hanover Regional Medical Center, a 700-bed public academic medical center in Wilmington, North Carolina from April 1996 until July 1998. Purves also served as Interim President & CEO of New Hanover Regional Medical Center from May 1997 – October 1997.

    From 1987 until 1996 he was employed by Carilion Health System in Roanoke, Virginia, where he served as COO of Roanoke Memorial Hospitals, the system’s 725-bed flagship teaching hospital.

    He received his Master’s Degree in Healthcare Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, and his Bachelor’s Degree in Health Education (Cum Laude) from Springfield College in Springfield, MA. Mr. Purves is also a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE).

    Purves is a native of Roanoke, Virginia. He and his wife, Mary Anne, have two grown children.

  • Kris Gaw
    Chief Operating Officer

    Kris Gaw joined MIHS in March 2016 as Chief Operating Officer. MIHS is Arizona’s only public healthcare system and Maricopa County’s largest training center of physicians, nurses and other healthcare professionals. MIHS includes the Maricopa Medical Center, the Arizona Burn Center, the Arizona Children’s Center, a Level I Trauma Center, two behavioral health centers and a network of 13 neighborhood clinics that serve the entire county.

    Prior to joining MIHS, Ms. Gaw served as Executive Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer – Hospital Operations for Parkland Hospital and Health System in Dallas, Texas, one of the largest public health systems in the country. At Parkland, Ms. Gaw was responsible for overseeing daily hospital operations as well as system wide ancillary and support services. She served as Executive Lead for the successful movement of 626 patients from existing to new hospital via a 923-foot $25 million bridge over a two-day period.

    From 2008 to 2014, Ms. Gaw served as Chief Operating Officer at Renown Regional Medical Center, an 808-bed tertiary care facility and Level II Trauma Center in Reno, Nevada, that provides services that span over an 80,000-mile radius from Sacramento to Salt Lake City. Renown Regional is home to the area’s only Children’s Hospital, with the region’s only children’s emergency room. From 2002 to 2008, Ms. Gaw was Vice President of Human Resources at Renown Health, northern Nevada’s largest integrated health network, with more than 6,000 employees. From 1995 to 2001, Ms. Gaw was Director of Customer Service for Hometown Health, the insurance division of Renown Health.

    Ms. Gaw received both a Bachelor’s and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. She is a member of American College of Healthcare Executives and is a Certified Rapid Process Improvement Workshop Leader.

    Ms. Gaw also is the proud mom of a beautiful daughter who is looking to enter one of the Valley’s nursing school programs in the coming months.

  • John Hitt, MD, MBA
    Chief Medical Officer

    Dr. Hitt joined MIHS in August 2016, as Chief Medical Officer. As our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Hitt is a key member of the senior leadership team having responsibility for a diverse group of departments which provide key support for MIHS safety and quality initiatives and focus for the effective and efficient delivery of patient care.  Departments reporting to Dr. Hitt include, Medical Staff Services, Grants and Research, Academic Affairs, Quality and Care Management, and Risk Management.  He will also work closely with Residency Program Directors, Clinical Department Chairs, and Medical Staff Leadership to insure close alignment with the MIHS Mission, Vision and Core Values.  

    He previously served as the Chief Medical Quality Officer for Hennepin Health System, located in Minneapolis. Hennepin Health System serves as Minnesota’s premier Level 1 Adult and Pediatric Trauma Center with many nationally recognized programs and specialties. The system is also a recognized system of primary care clinics and ambulatory specialty clinics located throughout Hennepin County, an essential teaching hospital providing safety net services for low-income and vulnerable populations, and a major employer and economic engine for the region. Dr. Hitt has over 20 years of extensive experience in quality and performance improvement, clinical integration, academic and medical staff affairs.   

    Dr. Hitt is a graduate of the University of Virginia (BA Biochemistry and BA Economics). He received his Medical Doctorate from the Medical College of Georgia in 1984 (AOA honors) and completed his Internal Medicine and Infectious Disease Fellowship training at the University of Minnesota Hospital and Clinics in 1991.  He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases. Dr. Hitt completed his MBA at the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota in 2003.

  • Kathy Benaquista
    Chief Financial Officer

    Ms. Benaquista is a CPA and holds a Masters in Business Administration. She first joined MIHS in 2000 and has served in different roles in the Finance Department. Her contributions were instrumental to the successful transfer of the District from Maricopa County. In 2008 she was named VP of Finance and just recently, in August of 2015, she was named Chief Financial Officer. Before joining MIHS, Mrs. Benaquista was CFO of St. Luke’s Behavioral Health Center and worked in other senior financial management positions in healthcare for over 15 years.

  • Sherry Stotler, RN
    Chief Nursing Officer / Vice President, Patient Care Services

    Ms. Stotler joined Maricopa Integrated Health System in 2005 from Barix Clinic of Arizona in Scottsdale, Arizona, where she served as Vice President of Clinical Services.  Ms. Stotler earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona, and her Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Phoenix in Phoenix, Arizona. Sherry has over 25 years of experience in nursing leadership.

    Under Ms. Stotler's guidance, MIHS implemented key initiatives that have led to many improvements, in patient care. 

    Ms. Stotler directs all aspects of the nursing division’s planning and development strategies and drives new business development through in-depth analysis of patients' needs and requirements to promote growth.


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