Community Health Systems' finance chief will retire from his position at the end of the year, less than three years after taking over the role, the company announced Thursday.
The Franklin, Tenn.-based hospital chain said its Chief Financial Officer, Thomas Aaron, will retire on Dec. 31. He has served in the position since May 2017 after first joining CHS in November 2016 as senior vice president of finance.
Once he retires, Aaron will likely enter a two-year consulting agreement with the company, under which he will advise the company's management team on its margin improvement efforts. CHS said Aaron also recently joined the board of a publicly traded company.
It's not surprising that Aaron will stay on as a consultant. CHS has maintained a lucrative consulting contract with its former CFO, Larry Cash, who stepped down in March 2017. Cash makes $300,000 a year under his consulting contract, which does not specify a certain number of hours worked per week or month.
Kevin Hammons will take over as CHS' CFO, effective Jan. 1, 2020. He currently serves as the for-profit company's senior vice president and assistant chief financial officer and treasurer, and has been with the company since 1997. In that time, Hammons has held a number of financial leadership positions, including overseeing accounting and financial reporting, SEC reporting, budgeting, design and implementation of financial systems and processes, among other areas.
In a statement, CHS CEO Wayne Smith said Hammons is uniquely qualified to serve as CFO, based on his more than 20 years of experience at CHS.
"I am confident Kevin will continue to lead and execute strategies that improve the company's financial performance and help position Community Health Systems for future success," he said. "Kevin is supported by a very tenured and committed finance team. He is also highly regarded by our board and executive management group. We are confident this will be a smooth and seamless leadership transition for our organization."
Smith also said Aaron has been instrumental in helping the company through numerous strategic initiatives, including refinancing debt and divestitures.
"Our board of directors and management team are deeply grateful for Tom's meaningful contributions and look forward to working with him in his new role as a strategic consultant to the company," Smith said.