Skip to main content

CEO of Priority Health Announces Retirement

Analysis  |  By Melanie Blackman  
   July 16, 2020

The provider-sponsored health plan's top executive Joan Budden will retire in January 2021.

Priority Health President and CEO Joan Budden has announced she will retire January 1, 2021

Priority Health, a provider-sponsored health plan, part of integrated health system Spectrum Health in Michigan, will work with the Furst Group to conduct a national search for a replacement.

"Joan's focus on affordability and value have been vital in advancing us toward our vision of personalized health made simple, affordable and exceptional," said Tina Freese Decker, Spectrum Health president & CEO, in a press release.  "She cares deeply about the company but more importantly she cares about individuals—and is willing to give generously of her time and talent to mentor others."

Budden became president and CEO of Priority Health in 2016. Her accomplishments include implementing "strategies, products and programs with the goal of ensuring everyone has access to affordable care." The health plan serves 1 million members.

At the beginning of 2020, Priority Health merged with Total Health Care. A more formalized relationship with Cigna Health is set to start January 1, 2021.

"Knowing the company is in a strong position has allowed me to plan for the next chapter in my life which includes spending more time with family and continuing my passion for mentoring and community service," said Budden. "I'm incredibly proud and honored to have worked with exceptional people over the last 12 years within the company, along with our partners and community leaders to improve health. Priority Health is in good hands with a strong leadership team.”

Related: Total Health Care-Priority Health Merger Approved by Michigan Regulators

Related: Priority Health's New Mobile App Includes Cost Estimator

Melanie Blackman is the strategy editor at HealthLeaders, an HCPro brand.

Photo credit: Priority Health Grand Rapids corporate Headquarters / Photo courtesy of Priority Health

Get the latest on healthcare leadership in your inbox.