Press Release

AHA Board Elects Teri Fontenot Chair-Elect Designate

The American Hospital Association's (AHA) Board of Trustees has elected Teri G. Fontenot, president and CEO of Woman's Hospital in Baton Rouge, La. as its chair-elect designate.  Fontenot will assume the chairmanship in 2012, becoming the top elected official of the national organization that represents America's hospitals and health systems. 

Fontenot joined Woman's Hospital in 1992 as senior vice president, chief financial officer, and treasurer.  She was promoted to executive vice president and chief operating officer in 1994, and assumed her current position in 1996. Previously, she served as chief financial officer at St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe, La.; Southwest Florida Regional Medical Center in Fort Myers, Fla.; and Opelousas General Hospital in Opelousas, La.

"Hospitals play an integral role in the health of their communities and the nation.  This will never be more apparent than in the next few years as health reforms take hold," said Fontenot.  "That's why I'm honored to serve in this capacity as hospitals demonstrate their role as cornerstones of care in their communities."

Active on the state and national stage, Fontenot has served as chair of the Louisiana Hospital Association and chaired the board of directors of Louisiana Hospital Association Insurance Trust Fund.  She completed a six-year appointment on the NIH Advisory Council of Women's Health Research.  She also is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and chairs its CEO committee.

Fontenot is the chair of Health Forum and is a member of AHA Services, Inc. boards and the Long-Range Policy Committee.  Previously she served as a member of the AHA Board of Trustees, an ex officio member of the Executive Committee, and chaired the Operations Committee. Fontenot's AHA service includes previous appointments as a state delegate to a regional policy board and a member of the governing council for the Section for Maternal and Child Health. 

Prior to becoming chair, Fontenot will become chair-elect on Jan. 1, 2011.  As chair-elect, she will preside over AHA's Long-Range Policy Committee, which identifies the association's priority initiatives.  Fontenot will succeed John Bluford, who is the current chairman-elect of the AHA and will become its next chairman of the Board.  Bluford is chief executive officer and executive director of Truman Medical Centers in Kansas City, Mo. 

Fontenot received an accounting degree from the University of Mississippi and an MBA from Northeast Louisiana University. She also is a certified public accountant. She was named to the inaugural list of Top 25 Women in Healthcare by Modern Healthcare magazine in 2005.

About the AHA

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit the AHA website at

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