|FirstHealth’s John May (center) is pictured with NCHA President Bill Pully and NCHA Board Chair Laura Easton, CEO of Caldwell Memorial Hospital in Lenoir, after he received the NCHA Trustee Merit Award.|
PINEHURST – A volunteer leader with more than two decades of service to FirstHealth of the Carolinas has received the Trustee Merit Award that is presented annually by the North Carolina Hospital Association.
Pinehurst resident John M. May was recognized for his participation in statewide health care activities as well as for his unique contributions to FirstHealth. An attorney with Robbins May & Rich LLP in Pinehurst, he served several terms on the FirstHealth Board of Directors that also included service as the board’s chair.
He is currently serving his third year on the NCHA Board of Trustees.
According to Steve Lawler, president of Vidant Medical Center in Greenville and former NCHA board chair, May was especially recognized for his guidance in amending the AC-3 Policy created to exempt teaching hospitals from traditional Certificate of Need approval processes.
“One of the examples of John’s thoughtful and quiet leadership was the work we did as a collective looking at the academic exemption for teaching hospitals and the AC-3, which gives teaching hospitals the opportunity to invest in high-end technology and services to better meet their mission as teaching institutions,” Lawler said. “At the end of the day, there was a shared appreciation that we need great physicians and we need to train them in a way that allows not only the teaching hospitals to have what they need but also allows those other community hospitals that happen to be within the same market or same geography to be successful as well. John was really masterful in bringing people together in a non-threatening way to get that done.”
During May’s volunteer tenure with FirstHealth, his insights were especially helpful during the 1995 merger of Moore Regional Hospital in Pinehurst and Montgomery Memorial Hospital in Troy that created FirstHealth of the Carolinas. The combined affiliation put him in the unique position of leading both the FirstHealth and Moore Regional Hospital boards at the same time.
He also chaired the FirstHealth board that oversaw a management agreement and then the 2001 acquisition of Richmond Memorial Hospital in Rockingham.
A native of Spring Hope in North Carolina’s Nash County, May is a graduate of the Wake Forest University School of Law. He recently resigned from his volunteer position with FirstHealth to become the organization’s corporate counsel. With this new role, he provides general legal services and advice to FirstHealth boards and management and oversees outside legal counsel.