William Clark

Working to keep Lee Memorial Hospital in the community

THANKS to our 2007 sponsors:

AL Lee Memorial Hospital

Oswego County Business



2007 Healthcare Hero
William Clark
Volunteer of the Year

Time is a precious commodity, but William Clark donates a lot of it to the cause of health care. Clark's day job is co-owner of The Great Outdoors, a recreational vehicle dealership in Fulton, but he's also chairman of A. L. Lee Memorial Hospital's board of directors, a volunteer position. This is his second year in the position.

While Clark isn't a medical professional—his degree, from Ithaca College, is business administration and recreation management—his work is integral to the delivery of local health services. In his view, contemporary health care delivery requires the same management skills needed to successfully run a business and the ability to react to market changes.
Clark's leadership is facing, perhaps, its biggest challenge yet in the form of the Berger Commission, which recommended the closure of Lee's inpatient services.
"To say I was shocked would be an understatement," says Clark. "How could a group of intelligent people make a decision that devastates our economy, forces hundreds of people out of work and puts people's lives in jeopardy?"

As of presstime, Lee had recently filed a lawsuit against the state seeking damages and the overturn of the Berger Commission's recommendations as they apply to the hospital. Clark says it's just one of several options hospital leadership is pursuing.

Involvement in community organizations runs in the family, says Clark. His great-grandfather, Hiriam Lester Paddock, was part of the effort to create the hospital in the early 20th century.
Clark's own involvements have been extensive. He's been a board member of the Friends of History in Fulton and a former president of the Fulton Rotary Club.

Clark's business partner, Jerry Fitzpatrick, nominated Clark for "giving up countless hours of family and business time trying to save the hospital's status for the community."
"While it is difficult to balance at times, I remain connected [to the Great Outdoors] by way of e-mail and cell phone for those critical issues," says Clark.