Our Lady of Lourdes Chief Executive Officer William F. “Bud” Barrow II, who has been at the helm since 2006 and led the hospital’s development of a new south side campus in 2011, this week announced to the hospital staff that he will retire in the first quarter of 2017. The widely respected administrator, 62, joined Lourdes after serving in the top management post at Opelousas General Health System for four years.
John Indest, chairman of the hospital’s board of directors, will lead the search committee to identify a new CEO. Barrow’s announcement is intended to provide ample time for a comprehensive search and transition of leadership. He will continue as CEO until his successor has been named and a formal transition is underway early next year.
“Bud has been a transformational leader for Our Lady of Lourdes, most notably leading the decision and implementation of our move from the original campus to our new location on Ambassador Caffery," says Sister Barbara Arceneaux of the Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System in a prepared statement. "His vision for our ministry to grow with the changing needs of the community exemplifies his deep love for people and commitment to those we are privileged to serve.”
Barrow says in the statement that he plans to utilize his 30-plus years of health care experience in a leadership and advisory capacity for hospitals in Louisiana while noting that the driving factor in his retirement is a desire to spend more time with his wife of 43 years, his five children and 15 grandchildren.
“Our Lady of Lourdes has profoundly impacted me. I will proudly watch as it continues to flourish in its care for Acadiana,” he says. “I am humbled and blessed to be but a small part of this wonderful ministry.”
Barrow announced his retirement to the hospital board last Thursday at its regularly scheduled meeting. Yesterday he spoke to senior executives and later that afternoon announced to the full leadership team at Lourdes. On Tuesday morning he notified the medical staff.
Indest says the search committee will be convened shortly to determine its next steps. Exact timing and details will be announced at a later date.