The chairman of the board of Community Hospitals of Indianapolis has stepped down after the breakup of the system's network and a $25 million investment controversy.
Larry Pitts resigned as board chairman Feb. 5, the same day Trust Investment Advisors, which he owns, lost a bid to manage $25 million of Community's assets. Pitts said his resignation is unrelated to the investment decision by the board.
Pitts issued a three-page statement regarding his departure but addressed only the board's decision to dissolve the network, a joint operating agreement between Community and St. Vincent Hospital and Health Care Center (Feb. 5, p. 8).
"It would be very difficult for me to devote the same level of energy and commitment to pursuing a different course, but I fully support the need to do so," Pitts said. "I am particularly troubled that unnamed outside observers...have suggested petty politics or egos caused the discontinuation of the collaboration."
The Indianapolis Business Journal, quoting board members who requested anonymity, said Pitts' colleagues on the board encouraged him to step down in light of his attempt to use his chairmanship to land the system's business. The New York-based investment firm of Sanford C. Bernstein was hired by the board, instead.
The weekly business newspaper also said some board members wanted him to resign his board seat, which he has held for the past 10 years.
A spokesman for Pitts said Pitts would not comment on the newspaper's report or elaborate on his reasons for resigning.
Pitts, who had been chairman since October 1994, remains on the board but has been replaced as chairman by Vice Chairman Roy Nicholson, president and chief executive officer of the USA Group in Indianapolis. Nicholson was unavailable for comment.