|Occupation||health care consultant|
Quinton D. Studer (born 1951), formerly the president of Baptist Hospital, is a health care consultant and founder of the Studer Group. He and his wife Rishy bought the Pensacola Pelicans in 2002. He is one of three principals in the Community Maritime Park project, which will include a new ballpark for the Pelicans and office space and a conference center for the Studer Group. He has been named one of the "Top 100 Most Powerful" by Modern Healthcare.
Studer was born in 1951 in LaGrange, Illinois. His father worked at a GM locomotive plant, and his mother was a pre-school teacher's aide. He faced a number of hardships, including partial deafness and a speech impediment, which caused him to fall behind in school. He graduated with a 1.3 GPA and tried to enter the military, but was turned down due to his hearing disability and diminutive stature.
Studer later recalled, "This was the height of the Vietnam War, when they were taking just about anybody off the streets. That is, everybody but me."
He took the ACT college entrance exam on a whim and received good enough scores to enter the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater on probation status. Barely making good enough grades to remain in school, Studer turned to alcohol and, following an unplanned pregnancy, married his first wife before his sophomore year. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in special education and began working at a Janesville, Wisconsin high school, where he found success preparing the mentally retarded for a workplace environment. After returning to college for a master's in special education, Studer was honored by city and county organizations as "Outstanding Young Educator of the Year."
Studer's personal life was marred by alcoholism. He marks Christmas Day, 1982, as the point when he realized the seriousness of his problem: "I was hungover from drinking until the bars closed on Christmas Eve and sitting in my living room staring at a Christmas tree without any presents. I was 31 and had had two failed marriages and was way in debt. Something had to change."
Studer's personal recovery from alcoholism led him to his career in health care. He became the community relations representative at a 35-bed substance abuse hospital in Janesville, where he helped to develop employee-assistance and back-to-work programs for local companies. His work drew the attention of the local Mercy Hospital, which he joined, climbing the ranks to senior vice president of business development.
After six years at Mercy Hospital, Studer took a leadership position as chief operating officer with Holy Cross Hospital in Chicago's south side, which was losing money and faced closure. He focused his efforts on raising the 3% patient satisfaction rate. After only six months, Studer saw satisfaction skyrocket to 73%; within a year, it was up to 94%, and the hospital began turning a profit.
Studer began speaking to other hospitals and health care groups about the progress at Holy Cross. Baptist Health Care invited Studer to Pensacola and, within six months, named him president of Baptist Hospital. According to the Independent News:
Patient satisfaction, which ranged between 9 and 40 percent, rose to 99 percent at Baptist. Employee turnover dropped from 30 percent to 12 percent. The hospital system made money, adding $1.8 million to its bottom line. Awards flocked in: Voluntary Hospital Association Leadership Award (1997), Modern Healthcare Sodexo Marriott Service Excellence Award (1997), Excellence in Risk Management Award by Modern Healthcare Magazine (1999) and USA Today Quality Cup (2000). Inc. Magazine named Studer a "Master of Business," the only person to earn the designation in the health care industry.
Studer left Baptist in 2000 to form the Studer Group, a private health care consulting group. Based in Gulf Breeze, Studer's company coaches more than 400 hospitals and health systems nationwide and has received numerous accolades within the health care industry.
Studer has published three books: Hardwiring Excellence (April 2004), 101 Answers to Questions Leaders Ask (March 2005) and Results That Last (September 2007) which placed 10th on the Wall Street Journal's bestseller list.
In 2002, Studer and his wife purchased a small baseball team, the Pensacola Pelicans. When the Southeastern League folded prior the 2004 season, leaving the Pelicans without a league, Studer purchased the franchise rights of the Springfield Ozard Mountain Ducks, allowing the Pelicans to take its place in the Central Baseball League. The Pelicans joined the American Association after the 2005 season.
In late 2004, Studer became involved in a group that would become the Community Maritime Park Associates, which proposed a development to occupy the City-owned Trillium property. The Community Maritime Park project, which was approved by the Pensacola City Council in 2005 and again by voter referendum in 2006, is a public-private partnership which will include a new baseball stadium for the Pelicans and a conference center and office space for Studer's company. Studer himself became a lightning rod for much of the controversy surrounding the Park.
Studer and his wife have donated to various social organizations in the Pensacola area, including $200,000 to the Lacey A. Collier Snoezelen Complex at Westgate. Studer donated $2.25 million to the maritime museum of the Community Maritime Park (doubled by the state's matching grant program) and pledged that he would donate all profits from the Pensacola Pelicans — including any profits should he ever sell the team — to local charities.