HES principals are senior executives with deep operating experience in fast-growth public and private enterprises in almost every segment of the health care industry.
Our principals have served in top leadership roles throughout their careers, including Chairman, CEO, COO, CFO, Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Medical Officer, Chief Technology Officer and as heads of operations, finance, informatics, corporate development and business development. We have also served on Boards of Directors and Investment Committees.
We work as part our Client's Management Team, directing our energies toward understanding the environment, defining practical solutions and providing guidance in implementation.
We bring our deep experience to identifying solutions that will enable our Clients to remain or become market leaders.
Where scale is required, HES principals will engage associates as needed, building for our Clients a combined Team of inside staff and outside advisors, while remaining the key contact person with responsibility for project results throughout the engagement.
Kevin F. Hickey
Kevin Hickey is founder/principal of HES Advisors. He is a 35-year veteran of the U.S. health insurance, health services and health information technology sectors. His roles have included investor, advisor, CEO, senior executive, board director, industry leader, change agent and business model innovator.
Nellie O'Gara has more than 35 years of experience in the health care industry as a manager, analyst, and strategy consultant. In this role she has helped over 250 hospitals, physician groups and payer organizations in the areas of growth strategy, new business and product startups, joint ventures, risk management, conflict resolution, and governance.
Ms. O'Gara is a co-founder of HES Advisors, Inc. She is a 30-year veteran in hospital system strategy, hospital owned and provider–related business strategies. She is well known for her work in designing and facilitating leadership decision processes and retreats for boards and corporate management of both for-profit and not-for-profit hospitals and healthcare organizations, and is highly regarded for her role in developing hospital/physician joint ventures, multi-specialty medical groups, and provider-payor risk arrangements.
Ms. O'Gara started her career in 1974 at Waterbury Hospital (CT) with responsibility for strategic planning, government relations, physician led operations and support services. In 1978, she joined Arthur D. Little, Inc. (Cambridge, MA), where her consulting practice focused on improving Board performance and strategic planning for hospitals. While at ADL, Ms. O'Gara was recruited to the newly created position of manager of corporate planning for the American Hospital Association (AHA), in which role she authored the first Environmental Assessment of the U.S. Hospital Industry. She also provided strategic planning assistance to 21 statewide hospital associations and the AHA Board.
In 1981, recognizing the coming growth opportunity in PPOs and HMOs, Ms. O'Gara founded First Health Associates, Inc. to provide assistance to sponsors of a new generation of managed care organizations. As president, Ms. O'Gara led major projects for medical centers, health care systems, medical groups and insurers. She also launched and spun off several related businesses, including an IPA management company. Under her guidance, First Health Associates provided service and counsel to over 225 health care provider and payer organizations.
Ms. O'Gara is also a successful entrepreneur in financial services, hospitality and retail personal care. She is a frequent speaker and author of articles on subjects ranging from joint ventures, physician/hospital collaboration, strategic planning and marketing.
Purdue University, B.S.
Yale University, M.P.H. - Hospital Administration
Ralph O'Brien is a partner of HES Advisors, Inc. He has served in numerous senior positions within the Health Insurance Industry focusing on identifying and capitalizing on opportunities to improve medical costs and patient's health and well-being. He has a keen understanding of medical cost and utilization data combined with a detailed understanding of the insurance and health care industry which enables him to create innovative and cost effective approaches to managing medical costs.
St Bonaventure University, BBA
|BSBA (Cum Laude)||Suffolk University, Boston, MA|
|MBA (Honors)||Suffolk University, Boston, MA|
Certification & Licenses
|Health & Life Insurance||License|
|Project Management Institute||PMP Certification|
|Boston University||PMP Certification|
|Project Management Institute||PMI Agile Certified Practitioner PMI-ACP (in process)|
|Microsoft||MS Project Certified Practitione (in process)|
Board of Directors
|Director||Managed Care Executive Group|
|Chairman of Board||Information Technology Association of America – eHealth Group|
|Director||Information Technology Association of America – Internet|
|Consultant of the Year||National Association of Professional Women|
|Service Excellence Award||Medica Health Plans|
|Technical Advancements in HealthCare||Gartner Group - Healthcare Informatics Technologies (HIT)|
|Claims Processing Optimization||HealthCare Claims Management Summit|
Samuel W. Levitt, ScD, CFA
Sam Levitt brings over 30 years of broad health care industry experience, with an emphasis on financial planning and analysis, financial operations, M&A integration, and managed care.
University of Pennsylvania, B.A.
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, M.S. and Sc.D. (Doctor of Science), Health Policy & Management
CFA Charterholder (Chartered Financial Analyst)
Bethany is a consulting member of HES Advisors. She brings over thirteen years of experience in health care strategy and organizational change, as well as a marketing & sales perspective. Bethany is known for her ability to define project strategies, perform program management and execute to deliver results. She is focused, diligent and always strives to surpass client expectations.
Indiana University, B.A.
Doug Thompson is a senior consulting member of HES Advisors. He is a strategic senior executive with leadership experience in managed care, accountable care, government, and health care delivery. Doug has a proven track record in delivering impressive strategic and bottom-line results in the public and private sectors through leadership, policy development, financing, change management and implementation. He is a senior consultant to government agencies, health care plans and systems, and Fortune 1000 companies as well as a business development executive experienced in selling to the federal and state markets.
Entrepreneurial Experience 2004 – 2016
EducationHarvard University, Masters in Public Policy, Health and Human Services, 1995
Jan Kennedy has dedicated more than 30 years of her health care career focused on improving the clinical and financial operations of provider organizations. Ms. Kennedy has extensive expertise in the strategic development and execution of services lines and has served in senior leadership positions for multispecialty organizations and specialty practices.
EducationUniversity of Connecticut, Storrs, Bachelor of Science, Allied Health MT(ASCP)
Brad Buxton has over 30 years of experience in the health care and health plan management field, including health plan operations, marketing, sales, government programs, external relations, and mergers & acquisitions. Brad spearheaded numerous major change initiatives in his past management roles, particularly in the areas of reimbursement and quality measurement.
He is currently President of BTB Associates and a Principal with HES Advisors, where he is involved in engagements in healthcare reform strategy focusing on planning and executing transformational change and improved health plan and health system functionality. Brad has worked with numerous commercial insurers, Medicaid/Medicare MCOs Hospital Systems, physician groups, PBMs and emerging technology companies.
Brad served as senior vice president, Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC), the largest independent Blue Cross plan in the U.S., comprising Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico. His responsibilities included revenue diversification strategy, including multiple acquisitions, and the management and negotiation of over $150M USD in vendor contracts. Among the acquisitions he led were a technology company with a real-time physician desktop claim system, eventually saving over $3 per claim, and a majority interest in a pharmacy benefits management company.
Brad's role as the head of networks for HCSC and president of HMO Illinois provided a platform to reorganize HMO operations, leading to a 30% savings in administrative costs while dramatically improving customer and provider service levels. Among his initiatives for HCSC, he restructured and stabilized the HMO provider network, leading to a $60M USD turnaround while maintaining an "excellent" rating from NCQA. He also initiated outcome-based reimbursement for hospitals (over 150 contracts) and doubled the effectiveness of the provider call center by re-engineering its operations to handle over 20 million calls per year.
Prior to HCSC, Brad served as senior vice president for Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield (Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky), where he managed over 2,000 employees and a $200M USD budget, and more than doubled HMO membership in under three years. He also guided the development of a pharmacy benefit management entity which grew to 5 million members in 5 years. His initiatives with providers to develop joint ventures and quality programs produced demonstrated benefits in reducing mortality and medical costs, and stimulating health plan growth.
Brad also held positions at American Hospital Association, Illinois Hospital Association and the Women and Infants Hospital of Rhode Island. He has served on numerous boards, including American Health Network of Indiana, Ohio & Kentucky; American Cancer Society; Xavier University Graduate School of Health Services, Advisory Board; Real Med, a real-time claims technology company; and Chicago Area Central Committee for the City of Chicago. He is also a past President of THIN - The Health Information Network, the third largest claims clearinghouse in the U.S.
Brown University, B.A.
Yale University, Master of Public Health/Hospital Administration
William L. Young
Bill Young brings over 20 years of executive leadership in the insurance, healthcare and health information technology arenas. Through his role in leading the development of managed care organizations, he has built national provider networks for major health plans, and has the benefits consulting expertise to lead the development of strategy to manage employee costs for large provider systems.
Bill's management roles have included:
Bill is a past director of these companies/organizations:
Bill has been a speaker at AHIP, the BlueCrossBlueShield Association and has chaired the Internet Track at the National Managed Health Care Conference. He most recently was a contributor to the American Medical Association's response to the DHHS ACO program and consulted for one of the largest Academic Medical Centers on the CMMI Innovation Challenge.
Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service, BSFS
Columbia University, MBA
Facilitation of Health System Board Retreat focusing on Medicare Advantage - HES Advisors was engaged to lead a three-day Executive Board Retreat for a New England based, multi-hospital ...
Development of Multi-System Alliance - HES Advisors was engaged by a group of five like-minded, high-quality, low-cost hospital systems that desired to form a geographically...
Population Management Initiative Design and Implementation - HES Advisors worked with its client, a major East coast based Academic Medical Center, to re-design its population management...
Strategic Roadmap for the Development of an Integrated System of Care - HES Advisors was engaged to assist a Midwest based, 500-bed community hospital in the development of a...