June 4, 2019

Nashville Health Care Council Fellows Celebrates 2019 Commencement

NASHVILLE, Tenn. –The Nashville Health Care Council is proud to announce the commencement of the 2019 Class of Health Care Council Fellows. After seven full-day sessions and two retreats, these top leaders deepened their perspectives on the challenges facing the U.S. health care system, connected with other forward-thinking innovators and gained the insights needed to shape the future of health care.

View the full list of 2019 Council Fellows graduates.

View photos from 2019 Fellows graduation.

View photos from 2019 Council Fellows classes.

Co-chaired by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, M.D., and Larry Van Horn, health care management and economics professor at Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management, the Council Fellows program creates the space for the most inspiring conversations in health care. By uniting the industry’s brightest minds and top drivers of change, the program energizes classmates with the inspiration, hope and drive they need to move their careers and the nation’s health care system forward.

“Throughout the five intensive months of customized curriculum, the 2019 class’s passion for health care was palpable,” said Senator Frist. “It was a privilege to witness the Fellows share their unique perspectives as they worked to address the greatest challenges of our industry, and I’m confident they will continue the collaboration and innovation long after graduation.”

During the 2019 Council Fellows program, classmates learned new strategies to create meaningful change in their organizations. They also explored topics including data analytics, innovations in tech and delivery, the future of hospitals and doctors, and measuring value.

To facilitate this year’s class discussions, guest faculty included, among others:

  • S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.)
  • Carlos Bustamante, Ph.D., Geneticist and Professor, Stanford University
  • Toby Cosgrove, M.D., Executive Adviser, Google Cloud Health Care and Life Sciences Team, and Executive Adviser and Former President and CEO, Cleveland Clinic
  • Aneesh Chopra, Former CTO of the United States
  • George Barrett, Former CEO, Cardinal Health
  • Rushika Fernandopulle, M.D., Co-Founder and CEO, Iora Health
  • Nancy Agee, President and CEO, Carilion Clinic
  • Marty Makary, M.D., Surgeon and Bestselling Author

In addition to classroom discussions, Council Fellows also experienced immersive exercises in which they were able to look at health care through the lens of both providers and patients.

“I’m so grateful to have been invited into this space,” said C.J. Stimson, MD, JD, surgeon and senior adviser to the chief health system officer at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. “I’m completely committed to health care transformation. That’s my true north, and to be surrounded by others who are doing the same and succeeding gives me hope that I can do this and there’s a path for me.”

2020 Fellows Class Recruitment

In January, the Council Fellows will bring together another class of health care’s brightest minds and top drivers of change.

“At such a pivotal time for the industry, we must break down silos and create the opportunity for senior leaders to have frank and meaningful conversations,” said Hayley Hovious, Council president. “By bringing the most influential leaders together in the nation’s health care services capital, Fellows supports Nashville’s entrepreneurial spirit as we develop solutions and meet the challenges of the U.S. health care system.”

Applications for the class of 2020 will open in September, and class selections will be announced in December.

For more information and to begin the application process, visit or email

The Fellows initiative is supported by underwriters BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, Change Healthcare, Community Health Systems, HCA, LifePoint Health, Tivity Health and Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management.


About the Nashville Health Care Council

The Nashville Health Care Council is an association of health care industry leaders working together to inspire global collaboration to improve health care by serving as a catalyst for leadership and innovation. Since 1995, the Council has served as the most trusted source for information on trends and innovations influencing the nation’s health care capital. Through regular programs, ranging from large ballroom events to small group gatherings, the Council provides members with truly unparalleled access to national and international policymakers, industry innovators and thought leaders.

Worldwide, Nashville’s health care industry generates more than $92 billion in annual revenues and 570,000 jobs. It is Middle Tennessee’s largest and fastest-growing employer. For more information on the Council, please visit

Back to News

Purpose Statement

We exist to strengthen and elevate Nashville as the Healthcare City.

View Purpose