Central Virginia VA director to lead Salisbury VA Health Care System until permanent hire made

Published 9:40 am Wednesday, January 26, 2022

SALISBURY —  J. Ronald Johnson will lead the Salisbury VA Health Care System as the system works to hire a permanent replacement for former director Joseph Vaughn.

Vaughn’s departure from the Salisbury VA was announced in December. He is transferring to the Memphis VA Medical Center, which is closer to family.

Johnson will lead the Salisbury VA in the interim, effective Thursday. With more than 28 years of health administration experience, Johnson has served as director of the Central Virginia VA Health Care System in Richmond, Virginia, since March 2019. During his tenure as interim director at the Salisbury VA, an acting director will lead the Central Virginia VA Health Care System.

“I have known Ron for about 10 years and I’ve been impressed with his leadership style,” Vaughn said in a news release. “I have the utmost confidence that he will successfully guide Salisbury VA through this transition.”

Currently, Johnson provides leadership and direction to over 4,000 staff of an accredited integrated health care system that includes 349 operating beds in a Level 1A medical/surgical hospital. It also includes an inpatient mental health unit, substance abuse rehabilitation program, community living center, hospice, spinal cord injury center, PRTP/STAR programs, polytrauma, outpatient dialysis, related inpatient and outpatient ancillary services and five community-based outpatient clinics. The system is designated as a center of excellence for epilepsy and headaches, and is one of three VA health care systems to expand 3D-printing capabilities through VA’s Agile Design and Production Transformation initiative.

Prior to serving in Richmond, Johnson was the director of the Hampton VA Medical Center in Hampton, Virginia, as well as director of the Mann-Grandstaff VA Medical Center in Spokane, Washington.

Johnson brings with him extensive experience leading outpatient clinic operations, VA-DoD Collaboration Programs, and large Compensation and Pension (C&P) Programs. He was awarded the Champion of TRICARE Award in 2007 — the first VA employee bestowed with the honor. He is a graduate of both Virginia Commonwealth University and the College of William and Mary. He is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE) and was the VA ACHE Regent’s 2006 Young Health Care Executive of the Year.

About Ben Stansell

Ben Stansell covers business, county government and more for the Salisbury Post. He joined the staff in August 2020 after graduating from the University of Alabama. Email him at ben.stansell@salisburypost.com.

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