SPRINGFIELD — LaMeisha Hunter Kelly was punctual on her first day at her new job. Her trademark confidence was a bit tardy, however.
Kelly, who ended a 13-year stint as Rincon’s city planner last month, started at Effingham Health System (EHS) on July 6. She is the executive director of strategic business development and government relations.
“I don’t typically feel fear,” Kelly said while recalling her EHS debut. “I don’t get afraid, but I would say I had a little fear doing something different. Quickly, it became excitement — just jittery excitement.
“It’s just a lot different work environment with it being a lot larger.”
EHS features approximately 400 workers.
“But, again, my prayer has been, ‘Lord, what do you want me to do.’ (The answer) came back, ‘I’ve got to put you in uncomfortable places in order for you to change and grow.’”
Kelly was the City of Rincon’s go-to person. She was well versed in every aspect of the city council’s business and twice served as interim city manager.
EHS CEO Dr. Fran Witt is pleased to have her on board.
“LaMeisha’s decision and her desire to become part of the executive leadership team here exemplifies for us the respect and confidence that the leaders in the community have for the health system,” Witt said.
Witt expects Kelly to be a key figure in the health system’s future.
“With her experience and background, she had other (career) options but she wanted to pursue a position here and align with the team and its vision in terms of growth, expansion and continuing to transform Effingham to be the number one (healthcare) provider for the community,” Witt said. “She is effective and impactful.”
Witt said Kelly’s responsibilities are explained perfectly in her lengthy job title. She will work to establish business and government relationships that will help EHS achieve its mission of providing every patient an experience of compassion, quality care and service excellence at its highest level of customer expectation.