Rostraver woman named COO, executive VP at Jefferson Regional Medical Center
Louise Urban remembers the day she decided that she wanted to go into nursing.
“I always thought about it (healthcare) and my mother always encouraged me,” Urban recalled.
“I think when I was a senior in high school, I woke up one day and decided that's what I wanted to do.”
It's been 30 years since the 1982 graduate of Belle Vernon Area High school made that decision to pursue a career in healthcare.
Recently, the Rostraver Township resident was promoted to executive vice president and chief operating officer of Jefferson Regional Medical Center.
“This promotion recognizes Louise's demonstrated record of success and the importance of an operational focus as we move toward finalizing our affiliation with Highmark,” said John Dempster, president and CEO of the medical center.
“Throughout her career at Jefferson Regional, she has exhibited the highest standards of professional practice, a commitment to quality and the patient experience and the ability to work corroboratively with the medical staff, management and employees.”
Urban first joined Jefferson Regional as a registered nurse in the ICU in 1991. She has been promoted numerous times, having been an assistant nurse manager and patient care manager in the ICU and director of patient care services.
In 2006, she was promoted to vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer. She was named senior vice president of hospital operations in 2010.
A graduate of the Western Pennsylvania Hospital School of Nursing, she earned a bachelor of science degree in nursing from California University of Pennsylvania and a master of science degree in health service administration from the University of St. Francis.
“I always had a desire to do something that would help and provide support to people,” said Urban. “I was inspired by other people in my environment that left an impression on me.”
Urban said she loved the role of nursing, dealing one-on-one with people whose lives she felt she could impact in a positive way.
“When you get to see the impact you can have on the individuals who are suffering - when you can do something to alleviate some of their concern and make their lives better, that's what makes the profession meaningful,” Urban said.
The memories of the patients she helped stay with her.
Urban especially recalled a young woman in her 20s who came into the intensive care unit of Jefferson Hospital a few years ago.
“That woman was so acutely ill and I could see her go through her pathway to full recovery - she left an impression on me,” Urban said.
“I always remember her because I was there taking care of her when she was so ill and felt so good that we were able to get her healthy again and back to her family. That was so rewarding.”
She has taken that background of experience with her into her management roles.
As a leader, Urban said, she tries to cultivate some of that experience among the caregivers in the healthcare facility.
“Your nursing background - because you're doing so much planning, evaluating, implementing - that gives you good background to lead,” Urban said.
“Having that compassionate component to the way you approach your profession is critical. My entire career, as I was taking on new roles and broader responsibilities, I always brought those skills as a nurse. The skills you learn as a nurse are a sound foundation for a leadership role.”
Outside work, she enjoys spending time with family.
Urban and her husband, Ken, have two children – Nicholas, a first-year law student at Drexel, and Laura, a junior at Washington and Jefferson College who's studying business administration.
“Family time is most important,” Urban said. “We like to garden and take care of our yard.”
Urban said having spent more than 21 years at Jefferson has given insight to the hospital's vast operations – and its people.
“One of the things that is nice is that I've had opportunity at Jefferson Hospital to serve in all kinds of roles,” Urban said.
“I have a relationship with so many people in so many departments. That's a positive.
“I have worked in a lot of people's shoes and have had an opportunity to connect with them.”
Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Roundup: Keurig strikes deal with Kraft on coffee brands; more
- Harrison’s 5 RBIs help Pirates pound Brewers
- Lopsided loss to Eagles shows Steelers have issues aplenty
- Steelers notebook: Keisel always hoped to return
- Sandusky cover-up case unusually shrouded
- ‘Caring hands’ reach out to Manor woman with crippling disease
- White House ricochets in nonprofits’ birth control coverage fray
- Thousands of American steel jobs believed lost to import surge
- New-Ken Arnold will have new-look school security
- Advocacy group requests investigation of Chrysler power system failures
- Health system with patients in Mercer County victim of hackers