Sentara Health Plans names new leader
Colin Drozdowski to succeed Dennis Matheis as president
Virginia Beach-based Sentara Health Plans has named Colin Drozdowski as the next president of Sentara Healthcare’s health insurance division.
Drozdowski succeeds Dennis Matheis, who was named president and CEO of Sentara Healthcare in June. Drozdowski will also serve as executive vice president of Norfolk-based nonprofit Sentara Healthcare. His new role is effective Sept. 1.
Matheis takes over from Howard Kern, also on Sept. 1. Kern is becoming the health care system’s CEO emeritus, stepping down after a 40-plus-year career. Kern oversaw the creation of Sentara’s first health insurance plan and first insurance business, Optima Health, which was placed under the Sentara Health Plans umbrella after Sentara acquired Virginia Community University Health’s Virginia Premier Health Plan in 2020.
Drozdowski has served as senior vice president of comprehensive health solutions and has been senior vice president of Sentara Health Plans since 2019.
“Colin is a growth-oriented and people-focused leader whose vision and commitments align with the future of our health system,” Matheis said in a statement. “He values innovation and has demonstrated his ability to effectively lead change throughout his time as senior vice president at the health plan. I look forward to continuing to work closely with Colin as the new leader of the health plan.”
Drozdowski helped bring Virginia Premier into Sentara Health Plans, the largest transaction in Sentara’s history. Under Sentara Health Plans, the Optima Health and Virginia Premier insurance plans serve more than 950,000 people, partnering with more than 25,000 physicians and more than 100 hospitals.
Before joining Sentara, Drozdowski spent 26 years with Blue Cross Blue Shield, most recently serving as senior vice president of provider solutions for Anthem, Inc.
“I am humbled and excited to transition to the role of president of Sentara Health Plans,” Drozdowski said. “I am honored to lead such a talented and dedicated team and look forward to growing together and delivering high quality service and care to our members and the communities we serve.”
Drozdowski has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Hiram College, in Ohio, and a master’s degree in economics from Cleveland State University. He serves on the board of Richmond-based Fit4Kids, a community coalition in Richmond that works to prevent and reduce childhood obesity, and Oklahoma-based health management company CareATC.
An $11 billion not-for-profit health system with 12 hospitals in Virginia and North Carolina, Sentara Healthcare employs about 30,000 workers, including 1,375 physicians. It was named one of the nation’s top five large health systems for 2021 in an annual ranking by Fortune and IBM Watson Health.