Message from the NCMGMA Past President Matt Johnson

Dear Members,

Serving as the NCMGMA President this past year has been a great privilege. Without question, the highest reward has been developing new relationships with so many talented leaders and strengthening relationships with old friends. An organization is only as good as its members, and NCMGMA truly stands out with so many giving individuals that are always generous with their time and knowledge.

It isn’t easy to pull together volunteers to sit on committees, be engaged, and share their talents. We are fortunate to have so many willing to serve as chapter officers, committee chairs and members, and board of director officers. It is a time commitment that can pull you from regular day-to-day responsibilities, and your sacrifice to serve is extraordinary. Thank you for your servant leadership and for being an example for us all.

For those yet to serve on a committee or as a chapter officer, I encourage you to do so. Your ideas will be welcomed, and you will be supported regardless of your experience. This is a wonderful way to learn and give back. Please consider this as you progress as an NCMGMA member.

2022 was filled with accomplishments; too many to name them all. Let me highlight a few of them that stand out.

We had an incredibly successful Spring Conference at the Wilmington Convention Center. As meeting in person returned and gained momentum, we had a strong turnout for the event. Our affiliate members and Alliance sponsors showed up in full force, allowing us to host a fantastic experience for participants. Beyond the talented slate of speakers, the networking and roundtable activities provided many excellent exchanges. The conference closed with solid representation from our Advocacy Committee and our friends from the NC Medical Society.

A first for our organization took place later in the Spring when we held our first-ever Master Class in Winston-Salem. Sandra Jarrett and the Education Committee went to great lengths to put together an incredible two-day event featuring renowned speaker Mary Kelly, who knocked everyone’s socks off. This event was so successful that we decided to do it again in 2023. Registration is open so don’t wait long to enroll, as this event will sell out fast!

The final big event of the year was our Fall Conference, held in Cherokee, NC. The newly renovated convention center at Harrah’s Casino made for the perfect venue to meet. Todd Pittman and the Conference Committee once again outdid themselves with the slate of speakers and activities at this conference. The vendor hall was packed, and lots of fun was had by all. The work for the 2023 conferences started almost immediately after the Fall Conference, so stay tuned for more.

In a time when we have seen the competition for employees at its most significant in recent history, we have leaned on each other for ideas for attracting and retaining talent. The listserv has been an incredible resource for us. Additionally, there may not be a more critical time than now to have an up-to-date Salary Survey as we evaluate our current payroll. We are fortunate to have this tool, as many states do not. Participation is crucial for it to continue and to remain relevant. Thank you to Frank Chitty and that Committee for putting this together, and thank you to all who have supplied data.

I thought I could be brief with this update, but there were just too many accomplishments that needed acknowledging, and I’m sure I’m leaving some out.

Another one that stands out for me was watching the growth of our Student Outreach Committee. John Clement and Lee Katherine Ayerhart led this committee to see a greater increase in student participants than we have had in years! We have also seen a resurgence of the Wilmington Chapter, which is very exciting. I can’t wait to see what’s next for our organization.

None of these achievements would be possible without the sage leadership of our Executive Director, Melissa Klingberg. She is a tireless worker and the glue that keeps us all together. Serving beside her was an honor and privilege.

I’ve had the luxury of seeing some previews of things ahead for 2023. With NCMGMA’s 2022-23 president, you can count on a fantastic year with Chad Ghorley at the helm. Please support him, as so many of you have helped me, as we continue to be the “leaders for tomorrow’s healthcare.”

Respectfully Submitted,

Matt Johnson, MA, MBA
NCMGMA Immediate Past President

Sandra Jarrett Featured in MGMA’s April Spotlight

In honor of Volunteer Month, each of the MGMA State Affiliates nominated a volunteer from their state who has gone above and beyond this past year. NCMGMA nominated Sandra Jarrett, FACMPE, with Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist, Orthopaedics – Salisbury. Sandra is a past board member and is the current Education Committee Chair for NCMGMA. She has devoted countless hours of her time to help with the success of the association. Congratulations to Sandra and all of the other MGMA Affiliate Volunteers of the Month.

See the complete list of April Spotlight volunteers here.

Learn and Earn CEU with NCMGMA and BOH


Video interviews available online for CEU credit

This interview series is made possible by Business of Healthcare and the North Carolina Medical Group Management Association. These interviews further our mission to provide high-level content for continuing education for our members while highlighting key players and issues in North Carolina’s healthcare industry.

By reading, watching or listening to a full interview, you may self-report to earn 0.5 hours Continuing Education Credits for Certified Medical Practice Executive (CMPE) or Fellow of the American College of Medical Practice Executives (FACMPE) credentials.

2019 BOH-NCMGMA List of Interviews

boh18-kdo231aCan Physicians Fix Healthcare by Becoming Independent Again?
K. Dale Owen, Jr., MD
Chief Executive Officer and Cardiologist
Tryon Medical Partners
Cardiologist and Tryon Medical Partners CEO Dale Owen, MD, and his 88 physician partners recently separated their practice from a large health system. In a BOH interview available as podcast and video available here, Owen explains why he and his partners made this change, why plans to take on population health risk is critical to physician engagement and how challenging it is to stand up a 75,000-patient practice in weeks.

cohen120bNorth Carolina’s Move to Medicaid Managed Care
Mandy K. Cohen, MD, MPH
Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services
State of North Carolina
Mandy Cohen, MD, MPH, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services for North Carolina, in a BOH interview available as podcast and video here, spoke with Business of Healthcare about the state’s transition to Medicaid managed care as well as efforts to impact social determinants of health and curb opioid abuse. The interview was recorded live with 200 physician practice leaders at the North Carolina Medical Group Management Association Fall Conference.

james260aPhysician Practice Helping Employers Manage Medical Cost, Quality
Jeff James, MBA
Chief Executive Officer
Wilmington Health
Large employers provide health insurance for about half of insured Americans but face enormous barriers managing medical costs. Wilmington Health CEO Jeff James joined BOH to describe how they help large employers overcome these obstacles to achieve better cost and quality. The interview was part of a series co-sponsored by the North Carolina Medical Group Management Association. Follow this link to view the interview.

jarrett250aWhy Joining a Professional Association is Important
Sandra Jarrett
Practice Manager
Salisbury Orthopaedic Associates, PA
Why is joining a professional association important to your employer and your career? NCMGMA Board Member Sandra Jarrett, FACMPE, of Salisbury Orthopaedic Associates, which is part of Wake Forest Baptist Health, describes the value she and her physician practice have derived as a member. Follow this link to view the interview.

brown183cHow Wilmington NC Leaders Triggered
Scalable Opioid Use Disorder Interventions
Philip M. Brown, Jr., MD, FACS
Chief Physician Executive
New Hanover Regional Medical Center 
In 2016, Wilmington, NC had the highest concentration of opioid use disorder among US cities. Community leaders including regional health system chief physician executive Philip M. Brown, MD, FACS, helped intervene. Brown describes here the moment a national report triggered awareness of the local opioid epidemic. He and his fellow leaders undertook multi-faceted interventions to change prescribing habits, impact social determinants and, most importantly, de-stigmatize addiction.

boh19-smith2Treating Opioid Addiction in Rural Family Practice
Karen L. Smith MD, FAAFP
Owner and Family Practice Physician
Karen L. Smith, MD, PA
Karen L. Smith MD, FAAFP, kept discovering opioid addiction in the families she served in her independent, rural primary care practice. With growing need and few referral options, Smith began providing medication-assisted treatment (MAT). MAT uses medication, counseling and behavioral therapies to treat substance use disorders and sustain recovery. Smith shares patient stories here which led her to take on this challenge and the barriers a physician must overcome to provide MAT.

NCMGMA and BOH thank Mako Medical Laboratories for helping
to make this interview series possible.



About the Business of Healthcare

BOH was founded as a forum and information exchange for the 40,000 decision-makers leading hospitals and health systems, physician practices, pharma, device, and senior living as well as government and commercial payers. These leaders, and innovators serving them, join Business of Healthcare interviews to solve the complex issues they face together.

Hosted by Matthew Hanis, each interview balances Margin & Mission: making good healthcare accessible to all. New subscribers come to BOH through your referrals. Please share our content with your colleagues and invite them to join our expert community.

Interested in Participating?

If you are interesting in being interviewed or have a tip on someone who would be a great interview candidate, please contact Melissa Klingberg in the NCMGMA offices at

Annual Conference Award Winners, Service Project News and Photos

Winning at the Game of Healthcare?
These individuals and organizations most certainly are!

The 2019 NCMGMA Annual Conference came to a close at the Embassy Suites in downtown Wilmington on Friday, May 10th, and we’re happy to report another successful healthcare leadership event. During the Annual Conference, guests attended educational sessions and heard from presenters such as Jeff Butler of JB International, Mark Werner of Healthy Blue (BCBSNC), Representatives Dr. Gregory Murphy and Josh Dobson, and William C. Ray, NC Dept. of Public Safety, Division of Emergency Management. Please Click here to view our full event schedule and to learn about all of our presenters.

We also presented our 2019 annual awards, recognizing outstanding leadership and performance within the healthcare industry and NCMGMA. Congratulations to the following winners:

2019 Annual Award Winners


(L-R) Steve Parker, Curi VP Member Services;
Jag Gill, FACMPE, CEENTA CEO and 2019 Administrator of the Year; and
Jane Lutz, NCMGMA President

2019 NCMGMA and Curi – a Medical Mutual Co. Administrator of the Year
Jag Gill, Chief Executive Officer of Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates P.A. (CEENTA), was named the 2019 NCMGMA/Curi – a Medical Mutual Co. Administrator of the Year during the North Carolina Medical Group Management Association’s Annual Conference networking reception on Thursday, May 9th. The Administrator of the Year award honors a medical practice administrator who has demonstrated exceptional leadership and management proficiency, and who has helped enhance the effectiveness of healthcare delivery in North Carolina. Click here to view the complete award press release.


NCMGMA and First Citizens Bank present CEENTA with a $3,000 check to the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Charlotte

2019 NCMGMA and First Citizens Bank Practice of the Year
Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates P.A. (CEENTA)
Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates (CEENTA) was named the 2019 Practice of the Year at the North Carolina Medical Group Management Association’s (NCMGMA) Annual Conference. The Practice of the Year Award recognizes a medical group practice that makes significant contributions to its community, patients and staff through volunteer work, fundraisers, staff wellness programs, community clean ups and community screenings and education. Click here to view the complete award press release.


(L-R): Steve Parker, NCMGMA president elect and the 2019 NCMGMA President’s Award recipient, and NCMGMA President Jane Lutz

2019 NCMGMA President’s Award Winner
Steve Parker
Steve Parker, the Vice President of Member Services for Curi – a Medical Mutual Co., and our NCMGMA president elect, is the 2019 NCMGMA President’s Award recipient. The President’s Award is given to a member of NCMGMA for outstanding service and contribution to the association, its members and medical practice management.


(L-R): NCMGMA President Jane Lutz and the
2019 Kim Harrah Becker Volunteer Award recipient
and NCMGMA immediate past president,
Sandra Jarrett, FACMPE

2019 Kim Harrah Becker Volunteer Award Winner
Sandra Jarrett, FACMPE
Sandra Jarrett, NCMGMA’s immediate past president and the practice manager for Salisbury Orthopaedic Associates, PA., is our 2019 Kim Harrah Becker Volunteer Award winner. The Kim Harrah Becker Volunteer Award highlights the true meaning of volunteerism for NCMGMA and we are proud to present it to Sandra, a member whose continuous service and commitment to our organization truly embodies the spirit of this award.

NourishNC Service Project


(L-R) NCMGMA board members Tessa Wolfarth and Chad Ghorley collect food supplies for the snack packs that were assembled at the 2019 NCMGMA Annual Conference and provided to NourishNC and GLOW.

This year, NCMGMA chose to perform a service project at the Annual Conference: building snack packs for NourishNC, a 501-c(3) nonprofit whose mission is to provide healthy food to hungry children, empowering them to succeed in the classroom and in their community. NCMGMA staff, attendees, exhibitors and sponsors collected and packed 135 lbs. worth of snack packs. In all, 200 lbs. of snacks were donated to NourishNC. The snack packs will be going to GLOW (Girls Leadership Academy of Wilmington) for their college visit field trips. GLOW is an all-girls charter school that is designed to prepare young ladies to be the first generation of their respective families to attend college. The field trips will allow these young ladies to get a glimpse of college and hear about the opportunities available to them.

Thank you to everyone who helped make this service project a success!

Thank You Conference Participants

Thank you to all of our attendees, exhibitors, speakers and sponsors who came out to Wilmington last week to be a part of our 2019 Annual Conference. We greatly appreciate your support of NCMGMA. Watch for details on more exciting NCMGMA events coming soon.

Event Photos

To view our 2019 Annual Conference Flickr photo album, follow this link.

BOH Interview with Sandra Jarrett: Why Joining a Professional Association is Important

Why is joining a professional association important to your employer and your career? NCMGMA Board Member Sandra Jarrett, FACMPE, of Wake Forest Baptist Health describes the value she and her physician practice have derived as a member.  View the interview here:

See Business of Healthcare for more interviews with healthcare leaders and influencers.

2017-18 NCMGMA Impact Report

As the year comes to a close, the NCMGMA board of directors would like to share with you a glimpse into what 2018 looked like for the association. To increase our transparency and to give you a better idea of the overall activity of the organization, we have put together a 2018 Impact Report which you can access at the link below.

Inside you will find a letter from our 2017-18 President, Sandra Jarrett, metrics from our various 2018 programs and events, and a glimpse into our board’s vision for 2019. Our hope is that this report will help give you a better idea of the association’s activity and health, and how the membership dollars are spent.

Thank you for being a member of NCMGMA and we look forward to another successful year in 2019, continuing our vision of being “the leaders for tomorrow’s healthcare.”

Lisa Hooks, MBA, Named NCMGMA/Medical Mutual Administrator of the Year


(L-R): Steve Parker of Medical Mutual, 2018 Administrator of the Year Lisa Hooks and NCMGMA President Sandra Jarrett

Lisa Hooks, Executive Director for Mt. Olive Family Medicine Center (MOFMC), was named the 2018 NCMGMA/Medical Mutual Administrator of the Year during the North Carolina Medical Group Management Association’s Annual Conference (NCMGMA) awards banquet on Thursday, May 10th. The event was held at Harrah’s Casino and Resort in Cherokee, NC.

The Administrator of the Year award honors a medical practice administrator who has demonstrated exceptional leadership and management proficiency, and who has helped enhance the effectiveness of health care delivery in North Carolina. Sponsored by Medical Mutual Insurance Company, the Administrator of the Year Award also provides the recipient with a stipend for continuing education at a state or national Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) meeting or professional development through ACMPE.

Lisa Hooks has served as the executive director of Mt. Olive Family Medicine Center (MOFMC) for almost 20 years. Under her leadership, MOFMC is consistently recognized as one of the best family medicine practices in North Carolina. For the past three years, MOFMC has been recognized as the “Best Medical Practice in Wayne County” by the Goldsboro News Argus and was recently awarded the Practice of the Year Award from NCMGMA.

Some of Lisa’s standout achievements include: MOFMC received the Level III Patient-Centered Medical Home designation; she helped develop MOFMC’s Chronic Care Management Program and Concussion Clinic; and during the 2017-18 fiscal year, Lisa wrote for and was awarded with $448,879 of grant money for MOFMC.

Lisa is the Professor (Adjunct) for Health Care Management at the University of Mount Olive and is involved in several professional and community organizations, including the Mt. Olive Chamber of Commerce, the Coastal Administrators Advisory Committee for Medical Mutual, and the Medicaid Committee and Blue Cross Blue Shield Committee for the North Carolina Medical Group Management Association.

Approximately 200 people attended the Annual Conference in Cherokee this past weekend. This year’s conference featured nationally-recognized speakers, general and breakout sessions led by industry veterans and an exhibit hall showcasing the latest healthcare management products and services.