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Health First President/CEO Announces Retirement

Mike Means announces 2011 retirement date after three decades in the healthcare industry

ROCKLEDGE, FL - After more than 37 years of service in the healthcare industry, including 23 years in Brevard County, Health First President and Chief Executive Officer Mike Means has announced he will be retiring from his current position effective December 2011.

"Over the past 15 years, I have watched Health First grow into this area's premiere provider of healthcare services. Health First is well positioned to continue to offer our patients and this community the absolute highest levels of service. The construction of Viera Hospital is on track and on schedule to become the cornerstone of Health First's Viera campus next year," Means said. "Our existing hospitals as well as our health plans consistently receive the highest industry recognition, and our physicians and associates continue to ensure Brevard County receives the best available medical care. I have been blessed to have had the opportunity to lead this great organization for 23 years and look forward to exploring a number of different professional pursuits, hopefully at a little more leisurely pace."

"Mike Means has been a key architect of this organization since its inception," said Russell Fischer, Chairman of the Health First Board of Directors. "His leadership has been critical to our healthcare system's success. The Board will move ahead both deliberately and expeditiously to select a successor who will carry on his high level of leadership and commitment."

Mr. Means has been the President and CEO of Health First since the organization formed in 1995 with the joining of Cape Canaveral Hospital, Holmes Regional Medical Center, where he served as President/CEO from September 1988 through July, 1995, and Palm Bay Hospital.

Prior to joining Holmes Regional Medical Center he served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Orlando Regional Medical Center, a four-hospital system; as well as the not-for-profit holding company comprised of four subsidiary corporations from 1980 until 1988.

In his internal announcement, Means said "After 23 years, I am more grateful than ever for having been able to live and work in such a fine community and to have had the exciting opportunities to lead Holmes Regional Medical Center and since 1995, Health First."

The succession planning process is being conducted by the Health First Board of Directors and the 20-month notice of Means' retirement will ensure a smooth leadership transition for Brevard County's largest provider of healthcare services.



Mike holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration and a Master of Business Administration and Hospital Administration from the University of Florida.

In 1988 Mike received the Emerging Leaders in Healthcare Award presented by Healthcare Forum and Korn/Ferry International, San Francisco. This award recognizes individuals who have excelled in their past and present management positions, displaying leadership abilities through accomplishment.

In 1994, Mike was selected as "Alumnus of the Year" from the School of Health Related Professions at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Mike is active in professional and civic organizations on the local, state, and national level.

He is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE); is a past member of the Board of Directors for Voluntary Hospitals of America - Southeast; a member of the University of Central Florida's Health Services Administration Programs Community Board; the Board of Overseers at Florida Institute of Technology's School of Business, Melbourne, Florida; and United Way of Brevard County.

He received the Citizen of the Year Award from the Space Coast March of Dimes in 1998. Mike served as Vice Chairman of the Astronauts Memorial Foundation, in Cape Canaveral, Florida. He served as chairman of the Melbourne/Palm Bay Area Chamber of Commerce in 1992 and as chairman of the Florida Hospital Association in 1993 and continues to be active in these organizations. Mike was selected by Florida Today as the Volunteer of the Year in 2005.

Mike Means and his wife, Gwen, raised their son and daughter in Brevard County and reside in Indialantic, Florida.