the torch Winter 2016, Issue 4 | Page 6

Joel T . Allison : Remarkable service for nearly 25 years

As Joel T . Allison transitions into retirement on his 69th birthday ( February 1 , 2017 ), it ’ s natural to wonder : What are his favorite memories ? What will he miss most about Baylor Scott & White Health ?
But , when he ’ s pushed for answers , he muses – and this is understandable . The system he has called home for more than 23 years has been through a lot . After thinking about it just a moment , he smiles and sums up what he ’ ll miss most in two words : the people .
“ I will never forget the memories I have had with the people here – seeing what they do in action ,” said Joel , who joined Baylor Health Care System in 1993 . “ That ’ s one of my favorite topics to talk about – the great things our people do every day .”
One memory that comes to mind is when he saw an environmental services employee praying with a patient ’ s family . Joel was headed to visit the family of a prominent Dallas businessman receiving care at Baylor . Joel noticed that the patient ’ s wife was upset . At the same time , the environmental services worker also saw that the woman seemed distraught .
“ I think you probably have somebody , a husband , who is a patient here ?” the employee asked . The woman replied , “ Yes .” Then the employee simply asked , “ Could I pray with you ?”
“ The woman was touched that this person would make that effort ,” Joel said . “ That ’ s what I love about Baylor — people just do what ’ s in their hearts . This heartfelt effort is applied whether they are caring for the most prominent citizens of Dallas or caring for a homeless person .”
This type of compassionate care reflects what employees see in their leader . “ Joel ’ s legacy will always be centered on that faithful , sacred trust with the patient ,” said Rowland K . Robinson , president of the Baylor Health Care System Foundation . “ He ’ s patient-centric . It ’ s in his head and in his heart .”
Joel ’ s passion extends from his interactions with patients to his dealings with the board . “ Integrity and servant leadership are the two things I think of most when I think of Joel . There ’ s no air about him ; he does what he says in a very humble way ,” said Jim L . Turner , chairman , Baylor Scott & White Holdings Board of Trustees . “ At the same time , he is the quintessential CEO . He respects the role of the board , and the board respects the role of the CEO , so it ’ s just been a great working relationship .”
Weathering Complicated Changes
On his watch , Baylor Scott & White Health has grown tremendously to become the largest nonprofit health system in the state , which includes some 6,000 affiliated physicians and 44,000 employees . He has navigated major changes to the health care landscape during this time , including health care reform , the shift toward population health management and an increasingly complex regulatory environment .
As Joel has steered through these changes , his colleagues say that he has also paved the way for Baylor ’ s new CEO . Jim Hinton begins his new role in January 2017 .
“ Replacing Joel Allison will be akin to replacing Tom Landry ,” said Albert Black , member , Board of Trustees , Baylor Scott & White Holdings . “ But after Landry was replaced , the Cowboys won two Super Bowls within five years – and that ’ s not bad . Joel has put a succession plan in place for the organization to reach new heights and that is the mark of a real leader .”