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Kevin Sowers Named President of the Johns Hopkins Health System and Executive Vice President of Johns Hopkins Medicine

Kevin W. Sowers

On Friday, Dec. 8, the trustees of the Johns Hopkins Health System, Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Medicine approved the appointment of Kevin W. Sowers, M.S.N., R.N., F.A.A.N., as the next president of the Johns Hopkins Health System and executive vice president of Johns Hopkins Medicine.

He will assume these positions on Feb. 1.

As the second person to hold these dual roles, Sowers will help define and execute strategic initiatives that advance all three parts of the Johns Hopkins Medicine mission—delivering outstanding care, training the next generation of leaders, and advancing research and discovery. 

Working collaboratively with all Johns Hopkins Medicine organizations, he also will focus on more fully integrating the institution's clinical delivery system. 

Sowers joins Johns Hopkins Medicine from Duke University Hospital—the flagship academic hospital for Duke University Health System—where he has served as president and CEO for eight years.

In this position, he oversees operations of the 1,000-bed teaching hospital, including implementation of the strategic plan, in collaboration with the physician practice group and school of medicine.

Under his astute leadership, the hospital’s clinical quality, patient satisfaction, work culture and finances have improved. He also led several major building projects for the hospital, including an expansion of the emergency department, a modernization of operating rooms, a new cancer center and an ICU bed tower.

Throughout his 32-year career with Duke University Health System, Sowers had the opportunity to work in multiple areas of health care delivery, from providing direct patient care to serving in clinical and administrative leadership roles. In all of those positions, he has been admired for his engaging and collaborative spirit and his ability to partner effectively with people at all levels of the organization.

Sowers began his career with Duke University Medical Center Hospital in 1985 as a staff nurse in oncology. For the next nine years, he held several key nursing positions, including nurse educator, director of medical oncology and nurse internships, and director of a cancer care consortium and unit manager for hematology, oncology and GYN oncology. 

Prior to assuming his current position at Duke University Hospital, Sowers held numerous senior leadership positions across the Duke University Health System, including chief operating officer for Duke University Hospital and interim CEO for Durham Regional Hospital. He has also held a variety of senior administrative roles overseeing the consolidation of Duke’s clinical lab services, emergency and trauma services, and managed care and patient care services.

In addition to exhibiting consistently excellent leadership, Sowers has committed to educating and mentoring others. He is a skilled teacher and holds several faculty positions, including adjunct professorships at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and Duke University Fuqua School of Business, and clinical associate at Duke University’s Graduate School of Nursing.

He served as a consultant to the Sun Yat-sen Cancer Center in Taiwan, establishing a much-needed department of oncology nursing and educating nurses on oncology care. When asked what he is most proud of over his tenure at Duke, he immediately points to the leaders he has helped develop who have gone on to lead their own organizations.

Sowers earned his bachelor of science degree from Capital University School of Nursing and a master of science from Duke University School of Nursing. He has published extensively and speaks nationally and abroad on issues such as leadership, organizational change, mentorship and cancer care.

Active in many professional and community organizations, Sowers serves as chair of the AmSurg Board and is a member of the Vizient Board of Directors, North Carolina Hospital Association Board of Trustees, the North Carolina Institute of Medicine Board of Directors and the Council of Teaching Hospitals Administrative Board.

Sowers is an American Academy of Nursing Fellow and has collaborated on numerous research efforts as well as consulted internationally. He has also served in leadership roles with the American Heart Association, Susan G. Komen and the Oncology Nursing Society.