‘Town-gown’ tradition recognizes Robinson Memorial Hospital

Tim Magaw


Stephen Colecchi, president and CEO of Robinson Memorial Hospital was the keynote speaker at the Bowman Breakfast yesterday. Colecchi spoke about the changes facing the hospital and the Kent area. The annual breakfast wa

Credit: Adam Griffiths

The scent of freshly brewed coffee, scrambled eggs and breakfast sausage filled Kent American Legion Hall yesterday morning during the 47th annual Bowman Breakfast.

Keynote speaker Stephen Colecchi, president and chief executive officer of Robinson Memorial Hospital, spoke to the group of about 230 people about the important role the hospital plays in the community.

“Obviously, Kent is a key part of service area,” he said. “We give support both to the student population and the year-round residents of Kent, and we have to make sure we’re meeting their health care needs.”

Colecchi said Robinson Memorial, located in Ravenna, is only one of 11 county-owned hospitals in the state. He also said the hospital was awarded Magnet status by the American Nurses Credentialing Center in 2006. Only 235 hospitals in the nation receive this award, he added.

“It is really the gold standard for nursing care,” he said.

Colecchi also made note of Robinson Memorial’s recent partnership with Summa Care and the impact it will have on the area.

“It’s very important that both health care centers of this region work together,” he said.

Robinson Memorial’s uncompensated and charity health care has increased over the last five years to $20 million, Colecchi added.

“We’ve come to meet the health care needs of all citizens of Portage County they’re able to pay,” he said.

Dan Smith, executive director of the Kent Area Chamber of Commerce, said Bowman Breakfast is an annual tradition to keep the “town-gown” relationship going.

“This is a tradition that dates back to 1963,” he said in his introduction. “It was started so the townspeople could hear what’s happening at the university and people at the university could hear what’s happening in the town.”

The breakfast is held each semester. The university chooses the speaker in the fall, and the chamber of commerce chooses the speaker in the spring, Smith said. Last fall, the breakfast was held on campus and President Lester Lefton provided the keynote speech.

Contact administration reporter Tim Magaw at [email protected].