Patch readers have spoken, and Southampton Hospital President and CEO Robert Chaloner has been picked as Southampton's Greatest Person of 2012.
Chaloner took the helm of the South Fork's sole hospital in 2006 and since then he oversaw a turnaround of the hospital's finances, the remodeling of the emergency room, a new affiliation with Stony Brook University Medical Center, the long-awaited declaration that Southampton Hospital has an agreement in place for building a new state-of-the-art facility to replace its aging Southampton Village home, and record-breaking philanthropic contributions, among other accomplishments, big and small.
After Patch profiled Chaloner last winter, Barbara Borsack commented, "The East End community was very lucky the day that Bob Chaloner came to Southampton Hospital — he's done a wonderful job of turning the ship around and making the hospital a place we can all be proud of. We all need Southampton Hospital! Thank you Bob!"
Barbara Gerstner wrote, "I came on board at the hospital shortly after Bob Chaloner and am so amazed and proud of the positive changes he has helped us to make. Not only is he a wonderful leader but he's a down to earth man who doesn't put himself on a pedestal. I am proud of the strides we have made! We appreciate you Bob!"
Hospital Chairman the Rev. Peter Larsen said, "Bob Chaloner has empowered every member of the Hospital Family. As a result each person has renewed pride in delivering first class healthcare to the East End communities."
During the nominations of voting for Southampton Greatest Person of 2012, more voices were added to the chorus:
Heather Dunn-Kostura commented, "Bob Chaloner will not rest until we have a world class hospital. He works long hours and spends much of what would be personal time working with the entire East End community. He deserves recognition for everything he has done and continues to do."
Kevin Unruh said, "For those who do not know Bob Chaloner, you should know that he is truly passionate about keeping the care in healthcare. Mr. Chaloner has navigated the storm of financial peril in healthcare, preserving and advancing the delivery of care to the South Fork of Long Island. During super storm Sandy, Mr. Chaloner worked tirelessly to make sure that the hospital's doors remained open for those in need. While some argue that this is his job, please understand that to Mr. Chaloner, our small community hospital is a lifeline of the South Fork. Knowing that we still have a hospital close by should help us all sleep a little better at night."