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GMC removes top executive's interim title

LAWRENCEVILLE — The interim label for a top executive at Gwinnett Medical Center, who has served in that role for more than six months, was recently removed, the hospital announced on Wednesday.

J. Thomas Shepherd, who has worked for the hospital system for 35 years, in December was named interim chief operating officer and executive vice president for the hospital system, and president of GMC-Lawrenceville. In his permanent role, a press release said Shepherd would implement strategic initiatives and ensure a high level of quality along with patient safety and patient satisfaction.

Shepherd also recruits doctors and supports president and CEO Phil Wolfe in board relations. Shepherd is also involved in operations, marketing, planning and business development at the hospitals in Duluth and Lawrenceville. Wolfe said Shepherd’s knowledge and leadership experience would be a benefit to the organization.

Shepherd previously worked as a lab technician, night administrator, vice president of operations, vice president of planning and senior vice president of strategic planning and business development.

He also was CEO of Dodge County Hospital in Eastman.

Shepherd has a master’s degree in business administration and a bachelor’s degree in management and biology, each from Brenau College. He is board certified in healthcare management through the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Shepherd and his wife, Linda, live in Gwinnett.