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Mass General Brigham Names CarolAnn Williams President of Mass Eye and Ear

CarolAnn Williams

Boston, MA — Mass General Brigham has announced that following a national search, it has named CarolAnn Williams president of Mass Eye and Ear (MEE). Williams, who has been serving as interim president since December 2022, will begin her role on July 1, succeeding John Fernandez.

“CarolAnn is a strategic, inclusive, and creative leader who has earned the respect and trust of colleagues throughout her more than two-decade long career at Mass General Brigham,” said Ron Walls, MD, chief operating officer of Mass General Brigham. “We are delighted that she has agreed to serve in this role and lead Mass Eye and Ear into its third century of excellence in patient care, research, and education.” 

Williams first joined MEE in 2011 as vice president of finance and chief financial officer after a successful career in business analytics and strategic planning at Partners HealthCare, now known as Mass General Brigham. After joining MEE, she led the development of a multi-year financial management strategy for what at the time was the only freestanding hospital of its kind. William’s success led to an increase in her span of leadership, growing to include oversight of information technology, as well as real estate and facility planning. She was also part of the hospital team that led the acquisition of MEE by Mass General Brigham in 2017-18.

“We are so grateful to CarolAnn for seamlessly stepping in and serving as interim president these past months,” said Bob Atchinson, chair of MEE’s Board of Directors. “For years we have seen her lead with passion, steadfast determination, and most importantly, compassion, and we know the future is bright under her guidance.”  

Following her service as Mass Eye and Ear’s incident commander during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, in which Williams steadfastly managed the hospital’s response and operations, she became its chief operating officer and chief financial officer. In the years that have followed, she has been keenly focused on further advancing MEE as a best-in-class destination for eye and ENT disorders for patients from around our local neighborhoods, across the country, and around the world.  Williams promotes an inclusive and diverse workforce by actively participating in the Mass General Brigham United Against Racism framework, applying the Diversifying Leadership principles and driving collaborative and culture efforts at MEE.

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About Mass Eye and Ear

Massachusetts Eye and Ear, founded in 1824, is an international center for treatment and research and a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School. A member of Mass General Brigham, Mass Eye and Ear specializes in ophthalmology (eye care) and otolaryngology–head and neck surgery (ear, nose and throat care). Mass Eye and Ear clinicians provide care ranging from the routine to the very complex. Also home to the world's largest community of hearing and vision researchers, Mass Eye and Ear scientists are driven by a mission to discover the basic biology underlying conditions affecting the eyes, ears, nose, throat, head and neck and to develop new treatments and cures. In the 2022–2023 “Best Hospitals Survey,” U.S. News & World Report ranked Mass Eye and Ear #4 in the nation for eye care and #4 for ear, nose and throat care. For more information about life-changing care and research at Mass Eye and Ear, visit our blog, Focus, and follow us on InstagramTwitter and Facebook.

About Mass General Brigham

Mass General Brigham is an integrated academic health care system, uniting great minds to solve the hardest problems in medicine for our communities and the world. Mass General Brigham connects a full continuum of care across a system of academic medical centers, community and specialty hospitals, a health insurance plan, physician networks, community health centers, home care, and long-term care services. Mass General Brigham is a nonprofit organization committed to patient care, research, teaching, and service to the community. In addition, Mass General Brigham is one of the nation’s leading biomedical research organizations with several Harvard Medical School teaching hospitals. For more information, please visit