Wexner Medical Center CEO Resigns After Faculty No-Confidence Letter

May 9, 2017

Wexner Medical Center CEO Sheldon Retchin resigned on Tuesday following letters of "no confidence" from dozens of physicians and professors.

Ohio State University president Michael Drake announced Retchin's resignation in a letter on Tuesday evening.

"Sheldon came to us after more than four decades as one of the most respected and prominent academic medical center leaders in the country," Drake writes. "He brought with him great wisdom, intelligence and integrity that were hallmarks of his two years with Ohio State."

According to a letter dated May 1 and signed by Internal Medicine employees, Wexner faculty took issue with Retchin's divisive leadership style and said he did not respect the academic mission of the hospital or university. 

“It is unfortunate that the Medical Center and College of Medicine leadership have created an environment of low morale, distrust and retaliation,” the letter reads.

The letter asserts that faculty have resigned or taken early retirements as a result of the tensions, and that problems in the center's hiring processes led to potential hires taking competing jobs.

Though the letter also expressed disapproval in the leadership of Craig Kent, dean of the College of Medicine, Drake said he had asked Kent to continue in his role.

"We fully appreciate the challenging work ahead," Drake wrote. "To that end, we remain actively engaged with faculty and leadership to address issues that face us all in a cooperative and transparent manner."

Another letter signed by five clinical department chairs acknowledges the May 1 letter, saying, "we have no confidence in the senior administrative leadership at OSUWMC."

"The cultural environment of OSUWMC and the COM is increasingly characterized by low morale, distrust, and a sense of alienation from the great University that attracted many of us to Columbus," the letter says.

Retchin also stepped down Tuesday as Ohio State's vice president of health sciences. When he came on in 2015, his base salary was $1.1 million.