The MGH has announced that Jovita Thomas-Williams, SPHR, GPHR, will be the next senior vice president of Human Resources (HR), replacing Jeff Davis, who retired last December. While she wraps up her current role at Yale New Haven Hospital (YNHH) in Connecticut, she spent time with MGH Hotline to share more about herself and why this sports fan is excited to be in the city of champions.

“MGH’s reputation speaks for itself,” says Thomas-Williams. “I was quite flattered when first approached about the opportunity. After researching Mass General and meeting with members of the Partners and MGH teams, I became more impressed with the organization, its commitment to excellence in health care and the quality of its talented professionals.”

Thomas-Williams’s HR experience spans decades and a variety of industries – including wholesale food distribution, hospitality and manufacturing – both in the United States and abroad. Her health care experience began at the University of Toledo Medical Center in Ohio, where she was the vice president and chief Human Resources officer. In her most recent role as vice president of Human Resources at YNHH, she says she has balanced the needs of a busy, prestigious academic medical center while remaining a strong advocate for her organization’s employees.

“MGH and YNHH are both academic medical centers dedicated to patient care and research, as well as being highly regarded, nationally-ranked leaders in health care,” she says. “Both organizations have top-notch professionals who are committed to their work with extraordinary passion.”

The search committee, comprised of leaders from both the MGH and Partners, was given countless examples of how Thomas-Williams has fostered workplaces where employees feel appreciated, valued and, most of all, heard. She says she is excited to bring this approach to the MGH and sees many similarities with YNHH.

When asked what she would like the 26,000 employees of the MGH to know about her, she emphasized that, although she takes her role as an HR leader very seriously, she doesn’t take herself too seriously.

“I take pride in being very approachable and relatable, and I have a wicked sense of humor,” she says. “I look for ways to laugh at life’s quirky circumstances.”

A former student athlete, Thomas-Williams is a lifelong sports fanatic, especially when it comes to basketball and March Madness. “I have even been known to talk a little smack,” she says, “only when provoked, of course!”

Thomas-Williams will begin her tenure at the MGH on April 29. 

This article was originally published in the 03/22/19 Hotline issue.