Christopher Gessner is currently the president and chief executive officer of University of Colorado Hospital (UCH), a nationally recognized academic medical center with almost 700 inpatient beds and 6,000 employees. UCH is the only academic medical center in Colorado and is the academic hub of the UCHealth system. As CEO of UCH, Gessner oversees other UCHealth locations in metro Denver including Broomfield Hospital, Highlands Ranch Hospital and numerous ambulatory medical centers.
Beginning in October 2021, Gessner will transition to a new role as president and chief executive officer of Akron Children's Hospital in Akron, Ohio.
Prior to UCH, Gessner was the president of UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh and UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital where he led initiatives to advance patient care, improve access for patients and elevate the overall health care experience. He launched several care delivery innovations including an array of virtual health services, embedding behavioral health services in primary care and subspecialty practices and the creation of strategic liver transplant and cardiovascular partnerships in national markets.
Gessner excels at partnering with physicians and other clinicians and enabling teams with diverse backgrounds and skill sets to work across organizational boundaries and deliver exceptional performance. He also has extensive experience in payer-provider contracting and relationships having worked at both Highmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield and Geisinger Health System early in his career.
Gessner earned master’s degrees in health care administration and business from the University of Pittsburgh and a bachelor’s degree in economics from the College of William and Mary. Mr. Gessner enjoys spending time with his wife, Jane, and three children.