The board chairman for Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System stepped down a day after the Catholic health organization fired CEO Mike McBride.
"In light of the fact that the Sisters have chosen to pursue a different direction for the system with respect to its leadership … I felt the timing was right to also allow them the opportunity to choose new board leadership," said James Moore Jr., a Monroe hotel developer.
Moore, who is also a member of the LSU Board of Supervisors, has served on the Franciscan Missionaries board as chairman for the past three years of the six-hospital health system. He declined further comment on the decision.
The Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System said Wednesday it has ended the tenure of President and CEO Mike McBride after a little …
Franciscan Missionaries is the state's largest Catholic health system, and on Wednesday said it ended McBride's tenure, after a little over a year at the helm. McBride came to Baton Rouge from Texas, where he served as a hospital executive for CHI St. Luke's Health in Houston.
Sister Barbara Arceneaux, regional minister of Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady, said in a statement that Moore had "remained past his eight-year term in order to support Mr. McBride's transition."
"With Mr. McBride's separation, Mr. Moore felt his obligation had been met. We thank him for his many years of service to our ministry," she said.
The Franciscans health system announced Wednesday they were firing McBride, who took over as head of the system last February. The Franciscan Missionaries sisters made the decision to fire McBride without a vote of the board.
"Mr. McBride’s approach to his role as the leader of our system was not in keeping with our values and culture," Arceneaux said Thursday. "The Sisters have the authority to take this action and, while unusual, we did so only after much prayer and discernment and continued communication with Mr. McBride about collaboration and the inclusion of others as demonstrating respect and shared responsibility."
McBride did not respond to a message seeking comment Thursday.
Franciscan Missionaries oversees a network of six hospitals, with the largest being Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center in Baton Rouge and Gonzales. According to IRS filings, OLOL Regional Medical Center took in more than $1.2 billion in revenue in 2017.
As CEO, McBride oversaw the proposal for Franciscan Missionaries to take over control of St. Dominic Health Service in Mississippi. That organization is sponsored by Dominican Sisters of Springfield, Illinois.
Ryan Cross, a spokesman for Franciscan Missionaries, said Thursday the organization is "proceeding as planned" with that proposal and hopes to finalize the transfer of sponsorship by July 1.
Cross added the firing of McBride is "not connected at all" to the investigation into former Our Lady of the Lake Foundation President and CEO John Paul Funes, who was fired late last year after being accused of a "pattern of forgery and embezzlement" at the foundation.
When McBride took over as CEO last year, he became just the second non-sister to run the organization since its inception in 1984, according to a history written by the system. John Finan, who served from 1996-2018, was the first.
Finan was paid more than $1.4 million a year as CEO of the organization, according to the most recent form 990 filing with the IRS in 2016.
FMOL Health System also oversees Our Lady of Lourdes and Women's & Children's in Lafayette; St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe; and Our Lady of the Angels in Bogalusa.