Kaiser officials reshuffle hospital leadership

Ray Hahn

Just a month after Maui Health System assumed operations at Maui County hospitals, the Kaiser affiliate and its parent company have announced changes in top leadership.

Ray Hahn, Maui Health System’s hospital administrator and chief executive officer, will leave this month to become senior vice president and chief operating officer for Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals in Hawaii, according to a news release Monday afternoon. Hahn has been on Maui leading the transition of Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital and Lanai Community Hospital from public to private entities, which occurred on July 1.

Chastell Ely, communications director for Maui Health System, said in an email Monday afternoon that Hahn, who has been with Kaiser Permanente since 2005, has been promoted to the new position.

Hahn will be replaced by Michael Rembis, who has more than 35 years of experience in community hospital leadership and hospital operations. He will be at his post Aug. 21.

Also, Mary Ann Barnes, president of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals Hawaii Region, will retire on Sept. 8.

A news release said Barnes “launched the historic venture” of Maui Health System, a community hospital system affiliated with Kaiser Permanente. She is also credited with opening a clinic on Kauai and growing membership to more than 250,000 members.

Barnes has been with Kaiser Permanente for more than 43 years, starting her career as an intensive care unit nurse. She joined Kaiser Permanente Hawaii in 2014.

Bill Caswell, senior vice president and chief operating officer for Kaiser Permanente Southern California, will serve as Hawaii’s interim regional president while an executive search is conducted, a news release said.

Avery Chumbley, Maui Region board chairman for the three Maui County hospitals prior to the transition, said he wished both Hahn and Barnes “the best in their new career changes.”

“Both of them were instrumental in the whole process of leading up to the negotiation of a transition. I think they have made significant contributions . . . to our community. I look forward to see who their replacements will be.”

In a release, Rembis said, “I look forward to becoming an active member of the community and working together to improve health care for our patients and the community.”

Rembis served as a CEO of Paladin Healthcare Management in California. He also served as CEO at Avanti Hospitals, where he provided leadership for Memorial Hospital of Gardena, Community Hospital of Huntington Park, Coast Plaza Hospital and East Los Angeles Doctors Hospital.

He has also held top positions at Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center, Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center, Riverside Community Hospital, Centinela Freeman Health System and JFK Medical Center.

Rembis earned his bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of California, Los Angeles and a master’s degree in health services administration from the University of Southern California.

* Melissa Tanji can be reached at mtanji@mauinews.com.

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