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Rex Conger


Role and Company

President/CEO Commanding Officer, Perry Memorial Hospital NR NH Pensacola


50 years experience in healthcare


Gilbert, SC

About Rex

I started out in the Navy, after HS Graduation, because I didn't know what I wanted for a career. In Boot Camp the Navy decided I would be a Hospital Corpsman!

I finished Hospital Corps School at Great Lakes and was assigned to Naval Hospital New London, Connecticut. I worked the Wards, ED and OB. I received orders to Field Medical Service School at Camp Lejeune, NC, thus starting my 24 years serving with the Marines. I went to Cuba, Viet Nam (2 Purple Hearts) back to Great Lakes as a patient and then discharged at the end of my 4 year enlistment.

As a civilian I started at the University of Wisconsin, obtained a job with some old Corpsman buddies at Evanston Hospital in Personnel, another Corpsman buddy arranged for me to spend 5 years working for the State of Illinois setting up EMS Systems on a Statewide basis and teaching EMTs and Paramedics. (During that time I was completing college courses at night.) I was hired as a Director of Nursing at St. John's Hospital 400 Beds) in Springfield, IL where I was responsible for ED, Outpatient, Oncology and EMS. (We began the first downstate Paramedic Program while I was there.) I was there for 5 years in that role while I finished my Bachelors and Masters at night, thru what is now the University of Illinois, Springfield. Next I took a position as a Vice President over ED and Ambulatory Services at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Beaumont, Texas (300 beds), again because of a prior Navy Service connection. While there I also was Commissioned in the Navy Reserves as a Medical Service Corps Officer as a LTJG.

I took my second Hospital VP Position back in Illinois 3.5 yrs later with the same Catholic Hospital System at St. Mary's in Decatur , IL 300 Beds). I was there for 14 years responsible for all non-IN-PT nursing areas during the course of my time there and I was also Interim CEO for 2- 6 month periods. In the Navy Reserves during this time I progressed thru LT and LCDR serving in many roles (DAS,DFA) with the Fleet Hospital serving with the Marines.

Then I got my 1st President/CEO Position at a Community Hospital In Watseka, Illinois. I was there for 10 years where we served a very large rural population with 4 Rural Health Clinics significantly expanding the hospital's services and locations. We were selected as one of the Top 100 Hospitals during my tenure. In the Navy I made Commander and was DFA and then Capt. and XO for Fleet Hospital Great Lakes. (I was able to be part of a team that went to Korea and provided education at Hawaii.) Lots of wonderful experience with the Marines!

I then moved on to my last President/CEO position in Princeton, IL another Full Service, Community Hospital in a rural area. I was there for 10 years where we again expanded services, service area, began employing physicians and developing regional services. During that time, in the Navy, I was Commanding Officer of the Reserve Detachment assigned to BUMED and my final Command was as the CO of Naval Hospital Pensacola (the most beautiful part of the country I've ever worked in)!

We retired to Gilbert, SC where we have a Daughter, Son-in-Law and 4 Grandchildren, living on a lake (Lake Murray) where I finally have water for my boat after 22 years of trailering it!

I have mentored younger colleagues both in the military and civilian side for many years and am looking forward to doing the same while all of the changes in Health Services Administration are still fresh!

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Rex's Recent Answers

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