Catholic Health Initiatives appoints T. Douglas Lawson, Ph.D. to top executive position in Texas division

T. Douglas Lawson, Ph.D., President of Baylor University Medical Center and the North Texas Central Region of Baylor Scott & White Health, has been named Chief Executive Officer of the CHI St. Luke’s Health market across southeastern Texas.

Lawson, who has held a variety of executive positions in the health care industry over more than two decades, will serve as the CEO of CHI’s Houston-based Texas Division and as Senior Vice President for Catholic Health Initiatives, the Englewood, Colo.-based parent company of CHI St. Luke’s Health.

Lawson will assume his new role on March 19 as the chief executive of the Texas Division, a $2 billion+ regional health system with 16 hospitals that stretches across the southeastern section of the state and includes CHI St. Luke’s Health in Houston, CHI St. Luke’s Health Memorial in the Lufkin-East Texas area, and CHI St. Joseph Health in Bryan/College Station and Brazos Valley region.

“Doug has the right background, credentials and experience to help lead CHI St. Luke’s Health to the next level,” said Anthony Jones, CHI’s interim Chief Operating Officer and the chair of the search committee. “We are thrilled to hire a proven leader who has such an impressive array of experience in all aspects of the healthcare industry.”

Leonard Tallerine, chairman of CHI St. Luke’s board of directors, called Lawson an excellent fit for a complex organization that includes dozens of healthcare facilities, an academic medical center, and several key affiliations, including a joint venture with Baylor College of Medicine and close collaboration with the Texas Heart Institute.

“I believe Doug has the skills and leadership style to solidify the Texas Division’s position and help transform it into a high-performing health system that provides the very best care in its communities,” Tallerine said.

Lawson, who has served in various roles with Dallas-based Baylor Scott & White Health since 2007, took over in 2015 in his current dual role as President of the organization’s North Texas Central Region and Baylor University Medical Center.

The organization, which includes an array of acute-care hospitals, outpatient centers, and short-stay facilities, generates approximately $1.4 billion in total operating revenue. Baylor University Medical Center, a faith-based academic medical center with more than 950 beds that treats approximately 325,000 people each year, has been recognized as one of America’s “best hospitals” for 20 consecutive years by U.S. News & World Report.

In his current role, Lawson oversees the development and implementation of a $100 million operations improvement plan that successfully reduced expenses at the medical center while concurrently improving patient satisfaction and core quality measures. He supported the growth of the system’s community hospitals by working to improve alignment of regional sub-specialty services to maximize organizational resources and better serve their local communities. In addition, he was responsible for significant growth in key service lines, including heart, liver, and lung transplants, oncology, neurosciences, and orthopedics.

“It’s exciting to join an organization that is as forward-looking as CHI,” Lawson said. “I am eager to help guide an already excellent regional network in fulfilling the organization’s mission to create and nurture healthy communities.”

Previously, Lawson – who holds a doctorate in leadership studies from Dallas Baptist University – served with Baylor Scott & White Health as Chief Operating Officer of Baylor University Medical Center, and as President of Baylor Regional Medical Center at Grapevine.

Before joining the Dallas-based health system in 2007, his many leadership roles included Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Cabell Huntington Hospital, Huntington, West Va., and President and CEO of the Cancer Institute at Saint Luke’s Health System in Kansas City, Mo.

A fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, Doug earned a Doctorate in Leadership from Dallas Baptist University, a Master of Science in Healthcare Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from Texas A&M University in College Station.

ABOUT CATHOLIC HEALTH INITIATIVES: Catholic Health Initiatives, a nonprofit, faith-based health system formed in 1996 through the consolidation of four Catholic health systems, expresses its mission each day by creating and nurturing healthy communities in the hundreds of sites across the nation where we provide care. One of the nation’s largest nonprofit health systems, Englewood, Colo.-based CHI operates in 18 states and comprises 101 hospitals, including two academic health centers and major teaching hospitals as well as 29 critical-access facilities; community health-services organizations; accredited nursing colleges; home-health agencies; living communities; and other facilities and services that span the inpatient and outpatient continuum of care. In fiscal year 2017, CHI provided more than $1.2 billion in financial assistance and community benefit for programs and services for the poor, free clinics, education and research. Financial assistance and community benefit totaled approximately $2.1 billion with the inclusion of the unpaid costs of Medicare. The health system, which generated operating revenues of $15.5 billion in fiscal year 2017, has total assets of approximately $22 billion. Learn more at