December 11: Today on the Conference channel, it’s an Interview in Action live from the 2023 CHIME Fall Forum. On this episode Sarah Richardson, SVP, Chief Digital & Information Officer at Tivity Health speaks with Sheree McFarland, CIO - West Florida at HCA Healthcare and Angela Maris, Vice President of Client Services at Mediant Health Resources. They discuss the vibrant, empowering community they've created specifically for women in the field. As they discuss the program's evolution from a small gathering to a major event, one can't help but reflect on the importance of women’s spaces in predominantly male fields. How essential are such spaces in encouraging diversity and inclusivity in these sectors? What does the future hold for this innovative program?
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Welcome to This Week Health Conference. My name is Bill Russell. I'm a former CIO for a 16 hospital system and creator of This Week Health, a set of channels and events dedicated to leveraging the power of community to propel healthcare forward. Today we have an interview in action from the Fall Conferences on the West Coast.
Here we go.
good afternoon. I am Sarah Richardson, Senior Vice President, Chief Digital Information Officer with Tivity Health. But more importantly today, I am joined by Sheree McFarland from HCA West Florida Division and Angela Maris from Median Health.
Ladies, you are literally hot out of the Women of Time Ladies Luncheon. Yeah. It has grown you over a year. I'm sure there was the await list as always. Yeah. Thank you. Share with us the genesis of the program and also how it has grown over the years to now be a lunchtime
event where It took a long time to get here, right?
Well, I can start because absolutely when I first came on the chime board Liz johnson was running the women of chime and when she was rolling off the board She asked me would you continue this legacy continue to grow this program? I said I would love to Fast forward a year later. I met angela right here in phoenix 6 30 in the morning Coffee i'm on my way to golf.
She's on her way to We started talking and I told her our vision and our dream. She said, Cherie, I can help you with that. Let's partner. The rest is history. We've been doing it every year. We started in a small location. And the next thing, we're filling major rooms with registration. And we keep needing to expand because everybody wants to join 7
Initially, we were given the 7 a. m. slot. I think at live after
wild concert the evening before in Miami. Yeah.
We still had a full house, but the demand has grown. We're growing the program, we're getting creative. But what we've done is we've carved out a space for women to be vulnerable, for women to support each other, for us to share our stories, the obstacles we've gone through.
But it is, we like to call it the sorority for nice girls, right? Everyone is invited, everyone is accepted, and so we're just so happy and fortunate to be so heralded by this community. So
it's been really exciting. It's been so awesome, and we inspire each other. Help each other, share best practices, work together, most importantly make lifelong friends that we'll have forever.
When you think about what women walk away from after these events, and the purposefulness of bringing people together, what for you has been the most lasting and enduring element of what you have been building all these years? I think it's the sense
of camaraderie, right, in creating this safe space. And it's just, you know, even today, at today's luncheon, and looking up.
and hearing all the chatter and seeing all of the smiles. And it was just nice to create and define space for us, right? For so many years being in this industry and there'd be like the bourbon and cigar tasting and the golf outings. And yes, some women do golf, but not all of us. So, it was nice to do something for us.
And, I think the impact is going to be seen for generations. And, that's the really exciting part.
And, you know, we remain friends. And after the event, we stay in contact with each other. We help each other. And, we can't wait to see each other at the next event. So, I think it starts here. But it continues after.
Absolutely. So does it mean that next year we get to have a dinner? Yeah. We're working towards
that. We're working towards that. We're going to need the ballroom at some point, I think. We might go back to afternoon tea, maybe some wine later in the afternoon to get more people to come. And, you know, we'll work on feedback and see what works for
Right. We're also looking into virtual events in between the VIVE and the Fall Forum to keep the conversation going, to keep the community involved, and, you know, communicating, collaborating with that.
Well, we did it via webinar during the pandemic. So we know that there was an appetite for the connectivity that was created even during thing I do want to add, Sarah, you
are a big part of this,
That's right. You are this dream
team. Absolutely. We missed her today, but she's part of the well. You've been part of every session with her. That's exactly
right. Exactly right. If we could carve and copy ourselves ten times over, we would. Oh my gosh. But again, just the three of us standing here together, it's just that power of like relationships and support, essentially.
It is forever. I think that's the thing we all three of us have
in common is just that. Exactly. We accept
everyone. We do. We make it better than we found it. And yet, it wasn't like this was the only thing you did this week. Yesterday, was the DEIB session. Yes, that was fantastic. And feedback from the crowd is that it was the best programming for that event that has ever existed in China.
Oh, that is, that's great to hear. So I have to ask what was about this year, like in the planning and the creating, because you're on the committee and you support it. Yes. What made this year the year where it was like a breakthrough moment for everybody? I
think probably the interaction. Action.
You know, the fact that the audience got involved we did the fishbowl where people could go and ask questions. We had a keynote speaker, so I think it was the variety. And look, that room was filled as well, just like the League of Women. It was, and it's such a critical topic. We can't get things in healthcare, right?
If we don't get diversity, equity, inclusion. Right. And it was so important, top of mind to everyone. I think it just had such a draw for everybody. I think
that is striking the vein of inclusivity, right? Absolutely. Creating spaces
a way that's authentic. Safe spaces where people could be vulnerable and they could share, you know, things that have happened to them in their lives and best practices for how to involve
So this was the first year as well in CIO Bootcamp that we had more women attendees than men. Fantastic. First time ever. Oh my goodness. So all of our efforts continue to pay off. Beautiful. So I just want to close by asking you both this, we're a day and a half in to Fall Forum. Yes. Other than the events you're hosting and the golf you're playing and all the other pieces and sponsoring Bootcamp as well.
Thank you, Media. Thank you. Yes. Thank you. What are you loving the most this year that you've seen
in the last couple days? I feel like the growth, right? The excitement, and I think everyone is so happy to be back in this post covid environment. It, we crawled our way back into society and I think this year we're all fully embraced, right?
And so I think it's a lot of gratefulness, right? That we're all, all together, that we get to be together again.
Yeah. I'm just thankfulness just to network with one another, again, in person and to go to the focus groups, to go to the sessions, to go to all the key events that are planned. It's just the energy level in the room is in,
just absolutely brilliant.
right? There's a sense of gratitude. There really is. that we didn't always have, maybe because we took so many things for granted. That's so true. There's a different sense of gratitude, energy, smiles, you know. And
what I loved in the last session is I met nurses from the UK, and one of the young ladies was from Belfast, my hometown.
Can you believe it? She knows the street I grew up in, in Belfast. I mean, what's the likelihood of that? Here we are in the desert. It's
wonderful. Power of camaraderie relationships. Absolutely. And life long friendships. None of us would be here without each other, especially you. You've been my mentor since 2005.
I love you both. And I'm just grateful for everything we continue to create together and this is a lifetime journey. So thank you both for being on it and creating space for everyone else to feel like they matter too. And thank you
and we learn from you every day as well, Sarah. It's reverse mentoring.
Thank you so much. Thanks.
Another great interview. I want to thank everybody who spent time with us at the conference. I love hearing from people on the front lines. It is phenomenal that you shared your wisdom and experience with the community and we greatly appreciate it. We also want to thank our channel sponsors who are investing in our mission to develop the next generation of health leaders.
They are CDW, Rubrik, Sectra, and Trellix. Thanks for listening. That's all for now.