Leadership matters

Jodi Coombs, M.B.A., B.S.N., R.N.

We are always bringing new talent to OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital. Usually that means we are looking for a surgeon who can bring new expertise or pediatric specialists who have innovative research programs or who bring new programs to our children’s hospital. I’m particularly excited about two talented people that we’ve brought to the Doernbecher leadership team.

Last winter, Jodi Coombs, M.B.A., B.S.N., R.N., came to Doernbecher from Boston Children’s Hospital to be the Vice President for Women & Children’s Services. Jodi has been a leader in some of the best academic children’s hospitals in the United States.

In addition to Boston, she has worked at Vanderbilt and Stanford (Lucille Packard Children’s). Jodi’s nursing background informs her practice as an administrator, and she has been a great partner in advancing care at Doernbecher this past year.

Ken Azarow, M.D., F.A.C.S., F.A.A.P.

A few weeks ago, Ken Azarow, M.D., F.A.C.S., F.A.A.P., joined the Doernbecher leadership team as our Surgeon-in-Chief. Ken comes to OHSU Doernbecher from the University of Nebraska, where he was a Professor of Surgery, and he had a long career as a pediatric surgeon in the United States Army before moving to Nebraska. In addition to being a superb surgeon, his extensive leadership training and experience will serve us well. We are indeed fortunate to have recruited Ken.

Among our other tasks, Jodi, Ken and I will be working hard to ensure that our Doernbecher surgical services are second to none. Ken will also be working on a daily basis with our anesthesia and nursing leadership in the Doernbecher operating rooms to monitor and enhance the quality of our services.

We have a lot of work to do. Just a few of our tasks include:

  • Building new operating rooms, one of which will include an intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging (iMRI). The iMRI will ensure that our children with brain tumors and epilepsy are getting the very best cutting-edge care.
  • Planning for how to bring new technologies to other surgical programs, including upgraded operating rooms for our cardiac surgery program and minimally invasive surgical programs to many of our surgical subspecialties.
  • Helping advance our ability to provide outpatient surgical services – children are best off when home with their families. How do we best support families in providing more of the care at home.
  • Recruiting the next generation of Doernbecher surgeons.

Doernbecher is a great place. With these great partners in leadership, I’m very bullish on the future of Doernbecher. Everything we do is on behalf of the kids and families that we serve.

H. Stacy Nicholson, M.D., M.P.H.
Professor and Credit Unions for Kids Chair
OHSU Department of Pediatrics
OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital