Dr. Ngozi Ezike to become CEO of Sinai Chicago hospital system

Ezike will begin her new job in June as head of a hospital network that employs more than 3,200 caregivers.

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Illinois Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike announced March 1, 2022, that she was stepping down.

Former Illinois Public Health Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike will become president and CEO of Sinai Chicago.

Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times file

Dr. Ngozi Ezike, who guided Illinois through the heart of the pandemic as the state’s top health official, has been named president and CEO of Sinai Chicago hospital network.

“Dr. Ezike will take over as leader of the city’s largest private safety-net health system on June 13th, replacing Karen Teitelbaum, who has led the system for 15 years,” Sinai Chicago Board Chair Vincent R. Williams announced in a news release Thursday.

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“We are excited to bring a leader with such experience and passion as Dr. Ezike to Sinai Chicago,” Williams said. “She is a strong, trusted and well-respected leader who has made a real difference in the lives of so many in the statewide response to the worst pandemic the world has seen in over a century.”

Ezike stepped down as director of the Illinois Department of Public Health on March 14. She was the first Black woman to lead the state agency and will also be the first Black woman to lead Sinai Chicago.

WBEZ reported in early March that Sinai Chicago was trying to recruit Ezike.

Sinai Chicago is the largest private safety provider in Chicago, with a service area that covers over 1.5 million people on Chicago’s West and Southwest sides. More than 3,200 people are employed at Mount Sinai Hospital, Holy Cross Hospital, Schwab Rehabilitation Hospital, a network of community clinic locations, as well as the Sinai Community Institute and the Sinai Urban Health Institute.

Ezike and her pandemic-fighting counterpart, Dr. Allison Arwady, became familiar faces to Chicagoans and residents from all parts of the state during regular news briefings throughout the pandemic.

Arwardy told the Sun-Times last month she has no plans to leave her position as head of the Chicago Department of Public Health.

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