About Dawn Gideon

Dawn GideonA graduate of the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health’s hospital administration program, Dawn Gideon (MHA ’83) built an extraordinarily successful career as a visionary leader in health care—one that was sadly far too brief. She began her career with Forbes Health System, becoming president of the Wilkinsburg Hospital and then Forbes CEO, which later merged with Allegheny University Hospitals (now the Allegheny Health Network).

Subsequently, Gideon founded Transition Management Group (TMG) and embarked on a career that focused on ensuring the survival of cash-distressed hospitals. She later sold TMG to Huron Consulting Group with whom she continued her work of finding new and creative tools for the survival of health care organizations. She returned to Pittsburgh as the chief operating officer for Allegheny Health Network, where she improved care delivery, built relationships, helped to avoid bankruptcy, and laid the groundwork for the organization’s future.

Throughout her career, Gideon was devoted to creatively solving complex business problems in the health care environment, and was recognized by such entities as the Harvard Business Review, which continues to use some of her early work as a case study for health care. She was a dynamic, creative, and compassionate person who gained national recognition through her health care management and consulting work. She continues to inspire family, friends, and all who work to improve our health care system by her courage and passion after being diagnosed with cancer.

After her death in June, 2015, Gideon’s husband, Kevin Altomari, along with family, friends, and colleagues, founded the Dawn Gideon Foundation. This organization seeks to provide a forum for the development of hospital administration professionals. Altomari and the Dawn Gideon Foundation have provided generous support to establish this annual lecture series as well as scholarships for students in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Pitt Public Health.

The Gideon Symposium

The Dawn Gideon Symposium is an annual educational event funded by the Dawn Gideon Foundationand conducted by the Department of Health Policy and Management at the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health in cooperation with the HPM Alumni Association and made possible by the contributing sponsorship of the Healthcare Council of Western PA.

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Sue Borowski

"Dawn Gideon inspires me because she never took the easy route in her career. She was a problem solver and worked to turn around cash-distressed health care systems. Most individuals would be afraid to take on a role in a company that is plummeting, but Dawn saw this as a challenge and she wanted to help the organization overcome. She is known for having a creative approach to solving problems and it encourages me to embrace challenges and strive to help others."

Jordan McBride
2019 Dawn Gideon Scholar