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East Texas ACHE Forum In Person Education Panels

April 5, 2024 @ 10:30 am - 3:00 pm

These panels have been approved for 1.5 ACHE In Person Education Credits each (3.0 if you attend both).


A special thanks to CHRISTUS Health for hosting this event for us!

10:30 – 11am – Check-In & Networking

11am – 12:30pm – Panel #1: Navigating Key Legislative Issues Facing Healthcare Leaders

Numerous public policy and legislative issues around healthcare delivery and public health affect healthcare organizations and demand involvement of their leaders to respond and adjust organizational policies and procedures. These issues often relate to improving population health, access and coverage through Medicaid and other programs, improving value, addressing consumer issues and workforce shortages, and more. Learning these issues and being involved in policy and organizational responses is important for healthcare leaders, regardless of how directly they may be involved.

Moderator: Vicki Briggs, L-FACHE; Chief Executive Officer; Bioceptive


John Hawkins; President & Chief Executive Officer; Texas Hospital Association

Cruz Perez, Legislative Assistant for Congressman Moran

Dr. Rick Snyder II; President; Texas Medical Association

12:30-1:30pm – Lunch (hosted by CHRISTUS Health)

1:30-3pm – Panel #2: Innovation and the Changing the Face of Healthcare Delivery

Given the extensive changes in healthcare delivery and the technological landscape overall, there is a necessity to take stock of where the healthcare community stands on change and innovation, specifically regarding the use of technology. The demand for higher quality healthcare at a lower cost creates an imminent need for change and innovation in healthcare delivery. Healthcare has already seen innovations in the tools used to deliver care, including pharmacy products, medical devices, information technology, and biotechnology products. This innovation has changed and continues to change the way healthcare is delivered. This panel will discuss how health systems are using innovation in technology to improve the value of the healthcare they deliver. Examples may include using technology to improve connectivity, patient flow, provider efficiency, and/or quality measurement.

Moderator: Mark S. Leitner, FACHE; Chief Executive Officer; Henderson Memorial Hospital and UT Health Carthage


Andrea Cooley, DO, FACOS; Assistant Professor of Medical Education, Director of Clinical Clerkships, and Medical Director of Simulation; The University of Texas Tyler School of Medicine

David Larsen; Director of Physician Practice Operations; Asst Institute Chair for Primary Care, CHRISTUS Health

Susan McBride; Associate Dean of Research; The University of Texas at Tyler


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Speakers’ Bios:


Vicki Briggs, MBA, and Lifetime Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives is an experienced healthcare executive with over 35 years of C-Suite experience in hospital and healthcare system administration in the not-for-profit and for-profit healthcare sectors.  She retired as CEO of UT Health Tyler in October 2022 after joining UTHET in March 2018 when the joint venture was formed by UT and Ardent Health Services to acquire the ETMC Regional Health System.


Currently, Ms. Briggs is the CEO of Bioceptive, a medical device company focused on women’s health innovation.  Additionally, she serves as an advisor for several healthcare companies and serves on the Board of Hospice of East Texas and the Southwest Region of the American Heart Association.


Throughout her career, Ms. Briggs has had responsibility for 25 hospitals ranging from small rural, critical access, community, and specialty to large tertiary with teaching programs.  She has held the positions of Division CEO, Market CEO, System COO, Hospital CEO, and Hospital CFO.  She has worked with national healthcare systems including HCA, Ascension Health, and Ardent Health Services.


Her commitment to recognizing the importance of supporting employees at the bedside was acknowledged in 2022 and 2021 when she was recognized as Best Boss by the Tyler Telegraph Best in Town program.


Briggs earned her B.S. in Accounting from Nicholls State University, Thibodaux, Louisiana, where she was recognized as a top 50 graduate during the 50th anniversary celebration.  She completed her MBA at Samford University, Birmingham, Alabama. She was named the Brock School of Business alumni of the year in 2013.


Ms. Briggs’ experience in East Texas includes serving as CEO of Longview Regional Medical Center from 1998 to 2005 in addition to being CEO of UT Health Tyler.  She has served on the Board and Executive Committee of the Texas Hospital Association and received the American Hospital Association Most Valuable Political Action Player Award.


Andrea Cooley, DO, FACOS is a cardiothoracic surgeon, Assistant Professor of Medical Education, Director of Clinical Clerkships, and Medical Director of Simulation at The University of Texas Tyler School of Medicine. Dr. Cooley was in practice at UT Health for 7 years before transitioning full time into academics this past year. She is passionate about integrating medical education, healthcare system collaboration, and innovative technology to operationalize change from the individual to the system level. She firmly believes emerging technology, including artificial intelligence, can be leveraged to improve access to excellent quality healthcare in underserved regions, reduce burnout in healthcare workers, and provide customized precision education to maximize the potential of each learner.



John M. Hawkins took the helm as president and chief executive officer of the Texas Hospital Association on Jan. 1, 2022. He is the organization’s sixth CEO since its inception in 1930. A longtime advocacy veteran, Hawkins has more than 35 years of experience in legislative, leadership and policy circles and has deep knowledge of health care and hospital funding issues. As CEO, he represents the Texas hospital industry locally and nationally and helps ensure hospitals have the resources they need to deliver the highest quality health care to all Texans.

Over the years, Hawkins has fostered critical relationships among business, consumer and medical communities and continues to position THA as a thought leader and single, powerful voice for Texas hospitals.

Prior to being named CEO, Hawkins served as THA’s senior vice president of advocacy and public policy since 2004. With a long tenure at the association, his team consistently secured important resources for Texas health care, including hospital Medicaid rates, funding for trauma and behavioral health services, funding for workforce training and protections for the state’s critical safety net Medicaid supplemental payment programs. Hawkins’ team also was an integral force during the COVID-19 pandemic, helping to secure staffing, supplies, vaccines and flexibilities for hospitals to keep patients safe.

Before to joining THA, Hawkins had a key role in streamlining state agencies at the Texas Sunset Advisory Commission, where he managed teams of analysts and testified on issues for the commission. He also gained early experience as a legislative staffer in the Texas House of Representatives and as a legislative liaison at the Texas Department of Information Resources.

In 2020, Hawkins completed a six-month immersive hospital residency program at Baylor Scott & White Hillcrest, where he gained hands-on hospital operations experience, shadowing leadership, interacting with staff and participating in governing board activities.

Hawkins graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor’s degree in government. He is married to Cami Hawkins, CEO of Marathon Kids, and they have two children, Madi and Jack.


Dr. David Larsen serves as the Director of Physician Practice Operations for CHRISTUS Trinity Clinic as well as the Assistant Institute Chair of Primary Care and Medical Director of Clinical Informatics. He started with CHRISTUS in 2019 as a family medicine physician and over the past 5 years he has served in roles such as Medical Director of Clinical Informatics, Lead Physician at Herrington-Ornelas Health Park, and Medical Director of Bluebonnet Point Wellness. He has received various recognitions including CHRISTUS Health Patient’s Choice Award and CHRISTUS Health Rising Star Award in 2021.


He earned a Bachelor of Arts from Brigham Young University and went on to complete his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree at Midwestern University. He also holds an Executive MBA in Healthcare Management from UT Tyler and a Master of Science in Biomedical Informatics from UT Houston.


Mark S. Leitner, FACHE: Over 30 years of senior-level experience in hospitals ranging from smaller regional to larger tertiary facilities, in both not-for-profit and for-profit settings.

In 2005, assumed the Chief Executive Officer position for Henderson Memorial Hospital, Henderson, Texas, a rural, 96-bed, 501(c)3, independent hospital. In 2018, joined the UT Health East Texas system of hospitals as UT Health Henderson and assumed additional responsibility serving as Chief Executive Officer for UT Health Carthage.

Earned a BSBA (’84) from the University of Arizona and a MHA (’86) from Washington University School of Medicine’s Health Administration Program in St. Louis. Completed a post-graduate residency at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, Texas. A Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Married Margaret in 1988. Two adult daughters, Sarah and Hannah.

Born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona.


Susan McBride, Ph.D., RN, NI-BC, CPHIMS, FAAN is a nursing informaticist with over 25 years of experience in clinical informatics whose research focus is on methods development for implementing, evaluating, and utilizing health information technology and data to improve patient safety, quality, and population health. Dr. McBride is a Professor and the Associate Dean of Research for the School of Nursing at the University of Texas at Tyler. She sits on multiple technical advisory committees at state and national levels as well as consults on various aspects of health information technology, and use of data for healthcare improvement. Dr. McBride is a Fellow and the past Chair of the American Academy of Nursing Informatics and Technology Expert Panel. She is the principal investigator for the 2015 and 2020 Texas Statewide EHR Satisfaction Study and the National League of Nursing funded research (2021-2023) for the study entitled “Competency Assessment in Simulation of Electronic Health Records (CASE) Tool: A Validated Tool to Evaluate EHR Competency in Simulation.


Cruz Perez joined Congressman Moran’s staff in January of 2023 and serves as his Legislative Assistant. Cruz covers policy areas related to health, education, the workforce, and financial services. Born and raised in Tyler, Texas, Cruz is a proud graduate of Tyler Junior College and Baylor University.





Richard W. “Rick” Snyder II, MD, president, Texas Medical Association Rick Snyder, MD, became the Texas Medical Association’s 158th president on May 20, 2023. The Dallas cardiologist has been involved in TMA throughout his 30-year career, having chaired its Board of Trustees and participated in TMA’s House of Delegates, Council on Legislation, and TEXPAC – TMA’s political action committee. He also was president of the Dallas County Medical Society, in 2012, when he led the physician community’s response to the West Nile virus outbreak. Dr. Snyder has practiced nearly 30 years at Medical City Dallas, where he has chaired the Department of Medicine and served as medical staff president and board trustee. He is president of the HeartPlace cardiovascular group, and he chairs the board of directors of ASPEN Physician Network. He also is a member of the Advisory Council of the All-Payer Claims Database. He previously served on the board of directors of the Southwestern Medical Foundation, as well as the board of governors of the American College of Cardiology, for whom he was president of its Texas Chapter. Dr. Snyder is board certified in cardiovascular disease, interventional cardiology, advanced heart failure care, and transplant cardiology. He graduated from UT Southwestern Medical School and completed his internal medicine and cardiology fellowship at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame and Université Catholique de l’Ouest in France. Dr. Snyder is married to Shelley Hall, MD, a prominent leader in cardiac care herself, and the couple has five children.


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April 5, 2024
10:30 am - 3:00 pm


CHRISTUS Orthopedics & Sports Medicine Institute
8591 South Broadway Avenue
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