Huntsman Sr. blasts the U. for firing of Cancer Institute director, says there is 'no excuse' for it

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  • Colonel X HYDE PARK, UT
    April 22, 2017 9:48 a.m.

    As you read the overall arc of this story (including some very knowing comments), it is clear the intentions of the U of U are to take over the Huntsman revenue stream and appropriate it as they see fit. Lee's motivations should also be carefully examined

    Huntsman will have tens of thousands of committed, passionate allies who believe their lives have been either saved or made better because of HCI (I am one of them).

    I don't know the palace intrigue but I know Jon Huntsman's original and unfolding vision - as well as the management of it - should not be disturbed by piffle bureaucrats. The HCI is a testament to this vision and the rest is a distraction.

    Heads should roll and legislation should be enacted immediately - perhaps even a special session - that protects and restores HCI from any further U of U greed and idiocy.

  • Strider303 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 20, 2017 9:02 p.m.

    From my reading between the lines it appears that the senior officials of the UofU Hospital and University want to bring HCI into or under their umbrella fiscally and organizationally. This permits tighter control of funds, personnel and the direction of HCI, and eventual integration under Drs. Lee and Pershing.

    This is in accord with the maxim that the first rule of any organization is to grow or expand. The result is more power to those in charge in the form of span of control, assignment of tasks and funds, and mission direction.

    It appears that the managers have overcome a leader.

    How sad.

  • BioPowertrain Detroit, MI
    April 19, 2017 10:17 p.m.

    About BYU: if they want a research hospital -- which would perfectly fit Karl Maeser's famous statement on BYU's destiny -- $125M from the Huntsmans would be the perfect launching pad.
    It's very possible. When push comes to shove -- which it now has -- Jon & Karen Huntsman are Mormons before they are Utes.
    It just so happens that BYU recently purchased Provo high school, which is just a block or two from campus. The perfect location to replace with a brand-spanking new, state-of-the-art research hospital.
    It also just so happens that the best (by all reports) cancer research hospital director/CEO in the world -- who would be the perfect leader to launch such an incredible opportunity -- has suddenly become available!
    And it just so happens there's precedent for this exact sort of thing (Cecil Samuelson & Jeff Judkins), so it wouldn't be BYU's first rodeo.
    (Mike Drop!)

  • AlanSutton Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 10:11 p.m.

    It seems the Huntsmans are jumping to conclusions before ascertaining the facts. The story says the reason for the termination has not been divulged. Despite that, Huntsman was quick to call Dr. Lee jealous, unethical, vicious and vitriolic. How much worse can criticism get? Clearly, this incident opens a whole new window on the Huntsman family.

  • utahcoyote Saint George, UT
    April 19, 2017 9:20 p.m.

    it looks like both vivian lee and mary beckerle are incredibly accomplished women, with both getting lots of recognition in their fields. lee has become more of a bureaucrat with her hiring at the university of utah, but is still listed as principle investigator on couple of studies. beckerle looks to be one of the driving forces in the successes of the huntsman cancer institute.

    since beckerle is retaining her tenured position in biology, it suggests that whatever the reason for removal is, it likely isn't for cause (tenure can be threatened by certain activities). this is perhaps a powerplay of sorts so that the head of the university and lee can have a direct say in who mans the very influential position beckerle held. the idea that they didn't at least attempt to clear this with jon huntsman is dumbfounding, and perhaps very damaging to the university itself.

    as an aside, firing a person in a position as distinguished as the one mary beckerle held, via email seems boneheaded at best. perhaps they wanted her to quit on her own, but she refused to do so. if that happened it still seems that you would want to bring the huntsman family into the picture.

  • owesley Mapleton, UT
    April 19, 2017 5:41 p.m.

    Listen, anyone who has ever read a post of mine knows my affection for the u ranges between 0 and ten basis points. Even though I am not surprised by the backhanded leadership of the u, I was very surprised to learn that there was zero consultation with the man behind the Huntsman Cancer institute. Jon Huntsman. 2.2 Billion soon to be almost 2.5B?? His integrity is beyond reproach. The same cannot be said about the u. In my book it is just more of the same....cancel games for fear of losing...cancel one of the longest standing traditions in College Football...make up excuses for bad behavior of athletes...not holding head coaches accountable for promises and contracts....accounting missteps....you know...just more of the same. Too bad the State legislature doesn't have the back bone to drain the swamp at the u. Mr. Huntsman, I'm sure BYU would treat $250,000,000 entirely different than a State funded, bureaucratic institution of lower education. Right in the center of one of the fastest growing Counties in the United States. Come on down good Sir!

  • Frozen Fractals Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 4:21 p.m.

    I have no idea whether or not firing her was the right decision but it seems that the method they went about making that decision was a poor choice.

  • banliberals SLC, UT
    April 19, 2017 1:34 p.m.

    They are not a research institution. Its an laughable comment.

    Hilarious......

    but then neither is the U anymore! Goodbye Huntsman Millions!

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 12:19 p.m.

    The squabble of the multi-millionaires and their dirty laundry hung out for all to see. Let's hope this can all be worked out in a civilized manner before it's too late. Alas, if Mr. Huntsman is right, there is something terribly wrong at the University of Utah that may need to be further exposed? This may be nothing more than a clash of egos but as tax payers ultimately we will want to know what is going on up there on the hill.

  • bemorefair Villanueva, NM
    April 19, 2017 11:56 a.m.

    By all accounts, the University of Utah has so much money coming in from their PAC-12 deal they can hardly find ways to spend it all. How about giving some of that money over to the cancer center? After all, does Whittingham really need another million dollars? Of course not. Let's put pressure on the Utah legislature to cap these ridiculous coaching salaries and start moving that PUBLIC money to where it's really needed most - cancer research. Certainly part of that money can go to retain top end executives that are worth it.

    I long for the day when the CEO of a well-respected cancer research institute is paid better than a dang football coach. We Americans have our priorities out of whack.

  • strom thurmond taylorsville, UT
    April 19, 2017 11:30 a.m.

    GoodGuyGary said :
    "Mr. Huntsman, maybe you can save the donation to HCI and start donating to BYU? I think it is a good idea to have a medical school at BYU."

    Yorkshire sai:"

    Super Idea!

    At the least, take Beckerle and offer her expertise and a several million $$ to BYU.

    --

    This will never happen. To have a med school you'd need an academic medical center, which is exceptionally difficult to manage.

    The LDS church got out of healthcare long ago, for good reason.

    And what in the world would Berkerle do at BYU? Manage the honor code office?

    They are not a research institution. Its an laughable comment.

  • LivinLarge Bountiful, UT
    April 19, 2017 11:26 a.m.

    It is commonly known the UofU is more interested in money than in research...

  • Bike5 Ogden, UT
    April 19, 2017 11:26 a.m.

    If what's being reported is accurate, it sounds like somebody shot off an email without involving HR. I can't imagine any HR professional anywhere agreeing to this.

  • CJMD Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 11:08 a.m.

    Within my circles at the U and HCI, I've seen many quality employees leave the U to take jobs at the Huntsman, where they are treated better and deal with less bureaucracy (who could this irk?) The Huntsman is constructing a pediatric cancer hospital. Research is flowing well. Grants are coming in. Meanwhile, on the other side, long-time employees are axed from the School of Medicine (wait, who is the dean?) The U builds massive multi-million dollar facilities in places like Farmington and South Jordan (wait, who is the CEO?). The School of Medicine alumni board has recently had pledges rescinded as SOM alumni lose their patients and practices in the wake of the U's new expansionism. And now this. Even if Huntsman's reaction is knee-jerk, I don't think it's off the mark. Look on Utahsrighttoknow. Who is the highest paid employee in the University of Utah system, and possibly the whole state? You can probably guess it from Huntsman's reaction. Having interacted with Beckerle and Lee, the contrast is sharp. It's time for the U of U health to decide- teaching and charity care or a greedy, bureaucratic corporation? The latter mindset seems to be the direction things are headed.

  • Stringer Bell Henderson, NV
    April 19, 2017 11:05 a.m.

    Maybe she needed to go, but you don't make a decision like that in a vacuum. And you certainly don't make it without consulting your largest supporter and donor, and the man who the building is named after. And....you never, ever let someone go via an e-mail. Who thought that was a good idea?

    Suggestions to move her and her research dollars to BYU-P is like relocating Hill AFB to the Provo Airport.

  • Yorkshire City, Ut
    April 19, 2017 10:02 a.m.

    GoodGuyGary said :
    "Mr. Huntsman, maybe you can save the donation to HCI and start donating to BYU? I think it is a good idea to have a medical school at BYU."

    Super Idea!

    At the least, take Beckerle and offer her expertise and a several million $$ to BYU.

    Think how that could move the goal of curing cancer forward faster-- when you don't have power hungry self serving administrators plotting against you.

  • Third try screen name Mapleton, UT
    April 19, 2017 10:03 a.m.

    What a mess! For Huntsman to go public like this means the U really botched it. Pershing or Burton should have been explaining it all to Jon weeks ago.

    You don't just fire someone. There are warning letters and meetings. If it's something like embezzlement or fake research, you don't offer then another position.

    It just boggles the mind.

    The U has the ARUP partners so they know how to deal with public-private partnerships...or do they?

    The U has their hands full with Huntsman, to be sure. And the big donations can be something of a white elephant. Huntsman can build and donate fater than the U can maintain and staff. It's complicated. And Jon isn't shy about tellilng the U how he wants things run.

    But still, for all this to be out in the open is startling.

  • Bruce A. Frank San Jose, CA
    April 19, 2017 9:56 a.m.

    Wow, Deseret News, it appears you omitted some critical information about oversight and contract obligations!

  • GoodGuyGary Houston, TX
    April 19, 2017 9:48 a.m.

    Mr. Huntsman, maybe you can save the donation to HCI and start donating to BYU? I think it is a good idea to have a medical school at BYU.

  • Johnny Triumph Lahaina, HI
    April 19, 2017 9:30 a.m.

    UofU would do this and jeopardize $250M in additional grants?

  • Michael Shea, MD Yuma, AZ
    April 19, 2017 9:18 a.m.

    Politics always exemplifies the worst in people. The university leadership would do well to keep in mind that there aren't many billion-dollar donors in the world. At the very least it seems that there are some inflated egos that need to be taken down and lines of communication that need to be improved.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 9:18 a.m.

    Jon Huntsman is a great philanthropist with great intentions. I'd think the U would pucker right up with this kind of verbiage coming from a man who has given tens of millions to that University.

  • Yorkshire City, Ut
    April 19, 2017 9:15 a.m.

    65TossPowerTrap said:
    "Huntsman just needs to chill out and let the UU administrators do their jobs."

    Seriously??

    Just pay up (with unbelievable amounts of money) and then shut up??

  • Fan Base Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 9:02 a.m.

    Dr. Lee is well qualified but arrogant. I'm not surprised at all by her action. It's time that another University (outside of Utah) hire her as president.

    Also, it speaks volumes that Jon Huntsman Sr. was taken by surprise. Something's wrong.

  • 65TossPowerTrap Salmon, ID
    April 19, 2017 9:01 a.m.

    Huntsman just needs to chill out and let the UU administrators do their jobs.

  • Palmetto Bug Columbia, SC
    April 19, 2017 8:38 a.m.

    Without more information it's hard to know exactly what happened, whether this is a political power play, as suggested by Mr Huntsman, or something else entirely. Since HR decisions are often confidential we may never know the real reason for the dismissal. I have no reason to believe something else is going on but it isn't hard to speculate reasons a person could be demoted/fired.

    Even though Huntsman is a major donor he is not part of the leadership hierarchy at the Huntsman Center. Therefore he probably can't be informed of reasons for personnel decisions for legal reasons. There's no doubt this entire situation could have been handled differently but without more information we can't say with much certainty who's to blame.

    Informing a person of their dismissal by email is not very classy but maybe this was the final communication of a series of in-person discussions about some problem. The penultimate discussion could have ended with "we'll let you know by email what we decide".

    Again, I have no idea what happened, but it's entirely possible the UoU acted appropriately. It's also possible they acted terribly. Without more information none of us really know.

  • Uteofferouus Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 8:39 a.m.

    In the midst of the Huntsman family temper tantrum, it would be informative to hear Vivian Lee tell her side of the story. That said, Dr. Lee might have knee jerked on this one? But before we all jump to any conclusions, it would be interesting to have all sides of the story aired. Alas, no matter what justification Dr. Lee employed, the Huntsman family feathers have been ruffled and now there will be heck to pay it looks like.

    As someone who worked at both institutions, I can tell you there never has been a good coordination between HCH and U of U Healthcare - and yes care at HCH has been impacted by the politics and lack of cooperation between the two institutions.

    One could argue that it would be best to separate the operations of the two hospitals completely. Perhaps this incident will drive this needed change?

  • amigo sandy, UT
    April 19, 2017 8:40 a.m.

    Jon and Karen's way or no way. Everyone who has dealt with them in the past understands this.

  • bamafone Salem, UT
    April 19, 2017 8:19 a.m.

    Biting the hand that feeds you doesn't seem very intelligent. The U is undeserving of such good will. It's a haven of radical liberalism totally dependent hard earned tax dollars and donations. Gratitude is an attitude, shame on U.

  • aghast SYRACUSE, UT
    April 19, 2017 8:07 a.m.

    I think I can sum it up with some old addages:

    "Don't make the person that brought you into this world upset!"
    "Don't bite the hand that feeds you!"

  • Vermonter Plymouth, MI
    April 19, 2017 8:02 a.m.

    At a minimum, Pershing and Lee bungled a very high-profile termination.

    The bigger question: How badly will this damage the U of U's reputation? Damage-control time.

    Pershing might want to consider bringing in an outside PR consultant. Then again, he might want to make a phone call to Huntsman, Sr., if he hasn't already.

  • Mayfair City, Ut
    April 19, 2017 7:54 a.m.

    Simple.
    8 words:

    Fire Lee.
    Investigate and censure Pershing.
    Reinstate Beckerle.

  • liberal larry Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2017 7:50 a.m.

    You gotta hand it to the University of Utah!

    Go ahead infuriate a guy who's donated over a billion dollars to charity!

    What could possilby go wrong?

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    April 19, 2017 7:36 a.m.

    "While I have admired Huntsman over the years, and applaud him for his generous, tax deductible charitable donations to the fight against cancer, I do not believe his donations gave him carte blanche over University Hospital operations and the University of Utah, nor do I respect his knee jerk reaction to this matter."

    Boy is this kind of a back handed compliment. Lets not get confused that donating millions to save hundreds of thousands in taxes still cost Millions to do. And when you invest heavily in something, that bears your name, yes, you have the right to how your money is being spent.

    If Trump had funded something - commercial or a charity - he would have every right to complain if he thought it was being mismanaged.

    When much is given, much can be expected. I also feel discrediting donations/charity as just tax dodges I think is very unfair.

  • taatmk West Jordan, UT
    April 19, 2017 7:37 a.m.

    Another personnel issue associated with the UofU. I'm ashamed. My diploma comes down right now.

  • Aerospace Pioneer Pleasant Grove, UT
    April 19, 2017 7:33 a.m.

    This incident is disturbingly reminiscent of what happened at California hospital in the 1970s. In that instance, the director of a children's hospital was summarily fired without explanation. As I investigated the matter, I became convinced that it was because of a power play on the part of the director of pediatrics at the associated university hospital. We will have to wait to see how the current case plays out, but clearly it has started out with a colossal blunder.
    (Fortunately, my daughter who was being treated for leukemia at the children's hospital in California survived, and thirty years later she was treated successfully for related problems at HCI.)

  • Old Scarecrow Brigham City, UT
    April 19, 2017 7:13 a.m.

    A lot can be learned from this set of facts from the article:
    Dr. Vivian Lee is CEO of University of Utah Health Care, Senior Vice President for Health Services, and Dean of the University of Utah School of Medicine. Each of these overlapping titles likely carries a salary and certainly institutional clout.
    Dr. Beckerle must have felt a measure of independence because of the reputation and mission of the Huntsman Cancer Institute that irked the controlling nature of Dr. Lee, and that had to be dealt with.
    Any wonder that large institutions like the U of U absorb so much money from taxpayers, tuition and philanthropy when they are allowed to facilitate such organizational nonsense?

  • Max Upstate, NY
    April 19, 2017 6:39 a.m.

    I had a very wealthy finance professor who was planning on donating a large sum of money to a university somewhere on the east coast (he didn't tell us which one). But before he did, he sent his son in with a rather mediocre donation to see how they treated him (apparently he knew this game all too well). He said that they were so dismissive of his son that they never got the large donation. They lost out on several million dollars. Sounds like the U of U is suffering from this same disease.

  • Herbert Gravy Salinas, CA
    April 19, 2017 6:18 a.m.

    No matter what the reason, to fire someone via email, especially someone of her caliber, is exceedingly tacky. Speaks volumes re those in charge at the U.

  • Orem Parent Orem, UT
    April 19, 2017 4:23 a.m.

    Wow this is truly pathetic.

    This quote says it all, "The left hand and the right hand at the University of Utah just doesn't know what's going on," he told the Deseret News. "It's just so pathetic to watch them operate."

    Time for some serious changes.

  • Utah Valley Guy Springville, UT
    April 19, 2017 12:54 a.m.

    Based on my experience as an Uber driver in Salt Lake, I would like to join the chorus of those calling for the dismissal of Lee and the reinstatement of Beckerle.

    My experience with picking patients up and dropping them off at the UofU Hospital has been atrocious. In one case, I was prevented from driving up to the door to pick up a lady from Massachusetts who could barely walk after leg surgery, and the security guards literally forced her to hobble in pain to my car, with both of us pleading her case in vain to the guards. The reason? Because Uber cars aren't allowed in with other cars. The security guards blamed the hospital administration for their hands being tied. Needless to say, the lady was livid, and lashed out at Utah. I hope I was able to convince her that Utah really is a nice place and that her experience was an outlier when it comes to Utah. Lee should be ashamed if she has anything to do with the hospital.

    Then, on the other hand, I've picked up several cancer patients, and they have unanimously had nothing but the highest of praise for the Huntsman Center and the caring humanity and professionalism they've experienced there.

    Fire Lee and restore Beckerle.

  • water rocket Magna, UT
    April 18, 2017 11:38 p.m.

    Top of the World made the best comment on this board, by far! While my professional association was limited with the University Hospital, I will say that department heads there are treated (and act) like gods. Kingdom building, with its associated authority and implied power is ever present, especially with said department heads. They never like to have their authority or decisions questioned.

    While I have admired Huntsman over the years, and applaud him for his generous, tax deductible charitable donations to the fight against cancer, I do not believe his donations gave him carte blanche over University Hospital operations and the University of Utah, nor do I respect his knee jerk reaction to this matter. He is acting like Trump, and he should know better.

    As for airing dirty laundry in public, well, this will only make matters worse. I suspect that this is simply a matter of a very qualified department head who wants to run her kingdom autonomously while receiving funding from the U of U hospital, for which she doesn't want to be held accountable.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    April 18, 2017 11:23 p.m.

    Huntsman Cancer Institute ranks probably 50th in the country on funding and research, I don't know why Utahns think it is ranked higher than that. We got one side of the story with this article. Huntsman shouldn't ever get involved with public university. To say a Lee is vicious, mean person is to describe most professors and administrators in universities, and most management in corporations. Legislature can cut the U's funding anytime.

  • 3D+ Park City, UT
    April 18, 2017 11:08 p.m.

    Sadly, the University of Utah Medical Center has decided that its mission is control and competition, rather than caring and compassion. Rather than try to keep the great benefactor and namesake of the Huntsman Cancer institute actively involved in significant decisions that would potentially taint the great gift he has given, the University decided to slap John Huntsman on the face - essentially saying "thank you very much Mr. Huntsman now we have your money, we couldn't care less about your or your vision."

  • golfrUte SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    April 18, 2017 10:54 p.m.

    Dr Lee's and President Pershing's decision impacting the Director without at least consulting the Huntsmans shows a degree of arrogance and/or tone deafness that is hard to comprehend from two individuals with their experience. Something doesn't add up.
    At the very least they owed the Huntsmans an explanation in advance and you never terminate anyone by email, let alone the Director of a prestigious hospital. Complete lack of professionalism and class. Of course the Huntsmans are offended and rightfully so.

    My family has been blessed by the patient care at Huntsman Cancer Institute and we will be forever grateful to the Huntsman family for making this amazing hospital possible.

  • misanthrope sl, UT
    April 18, 2017 9:52 p.m.

    Huntsman should have known better than to get into bed with govt. owned entity.

  • runnerguy50 Virginia Beach, Va
    April 18, 2017 9:29 p.m.

    I like Huntsman's style. Blunt and to the point. We need more of people like Huntsman calling it like it is.

  • Mig welder Huntington, UT
    April 18, 2017 9:25 p.m.

    Wow, Huntsman didn't hold back any punches! That was a brutally honest assessment of the situation. Hey Utes what are your thinking? ? You just bit the hand that feeds you.
    How much research money did you just lose over the next ten years?

  • Ronald Fox Salt Lake City, UT
    April 18, 2017 8:50 p.m.

    Well, the UofU staff and President have failed politics 101. Don't you think it would have been wise to call the man who's name is on the building? With the support that the Huntsman family has given to this institution, I thought they would have been smarter than it appears.

    All politics is local.

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    April 18, 2017 8:39 p.m.

    IMO, Peter Huntsman nailed the obvious reason - money and control.

    Under Dr. Beckerle, Huntsman Cancer rose to the highest tier among cancer institutes, nationally, and the Huntsman family was poised to make another vary large donation to spur cancer research and give hope to cancer patients and their families.

    To clumsily fire Beckerle in such a cowardly, unprofessional way either reveals major criminal conduct on the part of Beckerle about to be made public - and impossibility, from those who know her, including Jon & Karen Huntsman - or a stunningly brutal need for control by U of U leadership, even if it damages the University and the public.

    The Legislature and Governor Herbert can atone for harassing the U's basketball coach by getting to the bottom of this disturbing mystery with repercussions for the entire state.

  • DonO Draper, UT
    April 18, 2017 7:14 p.m.

    The University may have legitimate reasons for firing Beckerle, but to blindside the founder and major funder is bush league at best. It makes the University appear that it's in fumble formation. We haven't heard/seen the last of this fiasco.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    April 18, 2017 6:58 p.m.

    I'm not sure whether this person deserves firing but logic would tell me that I would contact and involve the man in whose name is on the building. Just sayin...

  • utahdean Salt Lake City, UT
    April 18, 2017 6:48 p.m.

    The firing of Dr. Beckerle is only the latest in a continual series of firing of department chairs and other deans by Vivian Lee. Two senior deans have left on short notice. The entire hospital senior administration picked up and moved to Stanford. During my time at the U, 12 senior leaders were either demoted or had the wits to leave prior to being fired by VL.
    There appears to be a major leadership crisis at the Health Sciences.

  • KJR Sequim, WA
    April 18, 2017 6:34 p.m.

    I agree with those that say that this should have been previewed by other concerned parties and organizations. However, those that say "this was a terrible decision" seem also to admit that they don't know the reason. The reason may be one that can be disagreed with, but I would bet that it was not totally arbitrary and capricious. I'm quite sure that the moving parties know some facts that you and I don't. Now we have to wait for the dirty laundry to be aired even to find out if there is any. If this was going to happen anyway, it would probably have been best to hammer out a deal and let the current director resign. Now we have a shouting match instead.

  • top of the world ,
    April 18, 2017 4:50 p.m.

    With all due respect to those who have submitted comments regarding the firing of the HCI Director, may I suggest a comprehensive review, with full disclosure as to the merits of the fired director, along with the reasons this change was deemed necessary. I would appreciate knowing what she brings to a very complicated table, how she has functioned during her tenure and a precise, totally honest disclosure of why she was fired. At this point, 'fired' is the only word that rings true. I would further appreciate an outline of what the Institute has outlined as the chosen course for continued excellence over the next ten years. With that on the table, I would like to know why Mary Beckerle is unable to adequately bring these projected plans to fruition. Or, to be fair, how someone else would be able to do so in a more efficient, professional manner.

    Until the above is carried out I will assume this is a money/power grab. I hope this is not the case and that full disclosure will alleviate my concerns.

  • Western Voter Salt Lake City, UT
    April 18, 2017 4:25 p.m.

    Brilliant move Pershing and Lee. Insult and ignore your largest donor. Terminating the HCI CEO by email without telling the Huntsman Foundation. What were you thinking? This was a power play and attempted coup that will end up badly for those involved. When all is said and done, Vivian Lee will probably be the one losing her job. We can only hope.

  • J3G Salt Lake City, UT
    April 18, 2017 4:21 p.m.

    The decision made solely by Vivian Lee to remove Mary Beckerle as CEO was done without proper permissions. Jon Huntsman Sr. was not involved in this decision and did not approve of it, even though he has legal contracts with the U that decisions like this should be made alongside his approval. Additionally, as a Principle Investigator for an NCI certified facility, Lee did not follow protocol by failing to obtain NCI approval in this decision.

    As for the patient care given at HCI, I can attest to its quality and patient focus. Patients are highly satisfied with the care they receive at HCI, and has a much higher level of patient satisfaction than ANY University of Utah Hospital. The management of HCI is vastly superior, with great thanks being owed to Dr. Beckerle because of this.

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    April 18, 2017 4:08 p.m.

    Another "great" decision from the UofU.

  • Powerdown Farmington, UT
    April 18, 2017 3:47 p.m.

    Clearly this has nothing to do with the provision of services or the ability to provide services at a efficient level. This is about the controlling the money and I suspect expansion vs. research.

  • Uteofferouus Salt Lake City, UT
    April 18, 2017 3:38 p.m.

    @DN Subscriber:

    As a healthcare professional who practiced his trade at both Huntsman Cancer Hospital and University of Utah Healthcare facilities I couldn't disagree with you more!

    The University of Utah Hospital and Healthcare Clinics are nationally recognized for clinical excellence and quality care. In my view they do a pretty darn good job of managing their resources efficiently and effectively.

    In my experience I saw a lot of inefficiency and disconnects at the Huntsman Cancer Hospital. When a close family member received care there it wasn't nearly as efficient and caring as when he was at the University Hospital. In my view, more of the management of Huntsman Cancer Hospital should be put under the Administration of University of Utah Healthcare.

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    April 18, 2017 3:31 p.m.

    We now live in a time when leadership of organizations, nations, and even churches must feel they have to respond to every so-called interest group who feels inclined to question their authority when they make leadership decisions.

    Dr. Lee and President Pershing are strong leaders. How can they be able to do their job successfully if they are second guessed when they make tough decisions?

    In my opinion, all this second guessing makes it increasing difficult to find good people who will want to be in leadership positions because there are so many who would tie their hands. If you give someone the responsibility to do a job - allow them to have the authority they need and stop the arm chair quarterbacking.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    April 18, 2017 3:30 p.m.

    The Huntsman Cancer Foundation, Huntsman Cancer Hospital, Huntsman Cancer Institute and everyone associated with them are exemplary models of dedicated professionals who have achieved great things and are focused on even greater accomplishments in one of the most devastating medical problems in modern society. I have total trust in their integrity, vision, and dedication. A family member's live has been saved thanks to their miraculous ability to diagnose and treat even the most obscure forms of cancer. They are a national treasure, and a huge benefit to present and future generations of mankind, not just in Utah, but world wide. Thank you all!

    The University of Utah, on the other hand, is not as praiseworthy, nor efficient in using their resources, nor focused on patient treatment.

    The U management should stick to worrying about winning football games or curbing crime on campus, and keep their hands off anything related to the Huntsman Cancer operations. To fire the HCI director without even the courtesy of discussion with the major players is insulting, stupid, and extremely questionable.

    Enough of the tail wagging the dog.