Next year it’s likely Ostrowsky’s name won’t grace this list – something that hasn’t occurred since we started putting it together more than 10 years ago. That’s because the man who has led RWJBarnabas Health since 2016 as president and CEO – and built it into $5.5 billion giant – announced in March that he’ll retire at the end of 2022. His successor, Chief Strategy and Business Development Officer Mark Manigan has already taken on the role of president, reporting directly to Ostrowsky, and will assume the CEO position at the start of 2023.
The network he’ll lead now includes Trinitas Regional Medical Center, which RWJ completed its acquisition of in the fall, bringing the number of acute care hospitals under its banner to a dozen. That’s on top of four children’s hospitals, multiple outpatient facilities, ambulatory care centers, geriatric centers, a free-standing behavioral health center and the state’s largest statewide behavioral health network.
In 2021, RWJBarnabas held its place on the frontlines of the battle against COVID-19, spearheading the creation and operation of one of the state’s six vaccine mega-sites in June, which was able to accommodate up to 5,000 patients per day. The system launched a second mega-site at the end of the year in Bridgewater. To date, it’s provided more than 520,000 vaccinations across New Jersey.
Over the summer, shovels hit the ground to begin work on RWJBarnabas’s and Rutgers Cancer Institute’s $750 million cancer facility. Upon completion, the Jack & Sheryl Morris Cancer Center will be the only free-standing cancer hospital in the state. Elsewhere in the city, work began on the $665 million, 550,000-square-foot New Jersey Innovation and Technology Hub, which RWJ has ties to through its academic partner, Rutgers.
RWJ is also expanding its existing facilities. In the fall, the system received what it said is the largest donation to a hospital in New Jersey history: a $100 million gift that renamed Saint Barnabas Medical Center as Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center. A $3 million donation, meanwhile, will help bring a new planned campus to Monmouth Medical Center in Tinton Falls. Through Ostrowsky’s leadership, RWJBarnabas Health has expanded efforts to address equity and systemic racism, and pro-mote an antiracist culture throughout the organization and the communities it serves, with initiatives like its Ending Racism Together program. Ostrowsky is also at the head of a system-wide endeavor to promote healthier living for its employees and its communities. The Social Impact and Community Investment (SICI) initiative, which he founded, utilizes RWJBarnabas’s resources to equitably improve long-term well-being and quality of life in the Garden State.
The system also strives for inclusion within its ranks, prioritizing the hiring and elevation of executives with diverse backgrounds to its leadership team. It was named a Best Employer in
New Jersey by Forbes for 2021. In December, Ostrowky was named to a panel put together by Gov. Phil Murphy to explore curbing the rise of health care costs in New Jersey. That same month, with the governor’s launch of the New Jersey Health Care Cost Benchmark Program, RWJBarnabas signed onto the associated stakeholder compact.