“Top Blacks In Healthcare” 2014: Bernard J. Tyson

As the chairman and chief executive officer of one of the nation’s leading integrated health care providers and not-for-profit health plans, Bernard J. Tyson is dedicated to upholding Kaiser Permanente’s mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of its members and the communities it serves.

Tyson believes Kaiser Permanente’s demonstrated ability to deliver high-quality and affordable health care through a combination of prevention, innovation and integration can serve as the model for the future of health care in America.

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In January 2014, Tyson assumed the role of chairman and has served as CEO since July 1, 2013. His career at Kaiser Permanente spans nearly 30 years, and he has successfully managed all major aspects of the organization.

Tyson’s leadership skills are born out of his upbringing. His father was a carpenter and minister, so telling stories is a big part of his communication style. He also learned the value of Keeping commitments early on.

“My father set an example that your word is your bond, and that if you say something and commit to it, you deliver on it. And if you can’t deliver on it, you owe the person the respect to explain why.”

Tyson also uses analogies in managing his team. “I have a little airplane on my desk, and if I have to have a difficult conversation with somebody, I will say, ‘Put on your seatbelt. We’re going to be fine, but we’re going to go through some turbulence.’ Feedback, to me, is a gift.”

The San Francisco Bay Area native earned a bachelor of science in health service management and a master of business in health service administration from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. He also holds a leadership certificate from Harvard University.

Congratulations, Mr. Tyson, for being a “ Top Blacks in Healthcare” 2014 honoree!

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