News Release

December 7, 2006

Contact: Kristina Goodnough, 860-679-3700

New Leadership for John Dempsey Hospital and UConn Medical Group

Farmington, Conn. – James Thornton has been named director of John Dempsey Hospital at the University of Connecticut Health Center, and Peter Albertsen, M.D., has been named the medical director of UConn Medical Group, the multi-specialty physician practice.

Thornton and Albertsen were named to the positions to replace Steven Strongwater, M.D., who is leaving to become chief executive officer of Stony Brook University Medical Center in New York. Thornton and Albertsen will assume the positions Dec. 22. John Dempsey Hospital is a 224-bed facility providing specialized and routine inpatient and outpatient services. UConn Medical Group is the largest medical practice in Greater Hartford, with more than 350 Health Center physicians in more than 50 specialties.

Thornton joined the Health Center in 2003 as controller of John Dempsey Hospital and director of procurement services for the Health Center. Since Dec. 2005, he has been on assignment from the Health Center to serve as chief operating officer of Connecticut Children’s Medical Center in Hartford to assist the executive management team. He previously served as president and chief executive officer of Brandywine Health Services, a hospital and trauma center in Coatesville, Pa., and as chief financial officer at Mercy Community Hospital, at Keystone Health System, and at Friends Hospital, all in Pennsylvania. He is a graduate of Villanova University in Villanova, Pa. He lives in Farmington.

Albertsen, professor and chief of urology, has held numerous appointments at the Health Center since joining in 1987. Currently, he is serving as associate dean for clinical research planning and administration as well as director of the urology residency program. He also chairs the Strategic Planning Committee and the Clinical Council Finance Subcommittee. At the national level, Albertsen is a trustee of the American Board of Urology, immediate past president of the American Association of Clinical Urologists, and serves on the Residency Review Committee of the American College of Graduate Medical Education for Urology. He received his medical degree from Columbia University in New York City, and completed his residency with the Fifth (Harvard) Surgical Service at New England Deaconess Hospital, and the Brady Urological Institute at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He lives in Simsbury.

“Both Thornton and Albertsen are committed to leadership that is considerate and sensitive, collaborative, systems-based, data driven and empowering of the skills and intelligence of others,” says Peter Deckers, M.D., executive director of health affairs and dean of the school of medicine at the Health Center. Deckers announced the appointments Dec. 1.

UConn Health includes the schools of medicine and dental medicine, the UConn Medical Group, University Dentists, and John Dempsey Hospital. Home to Bioscience Connecticut, UConn Health pursues a mission of providing outstanding health care education in an environment of exemplary patient care, research and public service. More information about UConn Health is available at

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