News Detail Kelly Cullen of Tampa General Hospital Named an Academic Medical Center Chief Operating Officer to Know

Published: Feb 12, 2024

The academic health system’s EVP and Chief Operating Officer was recognized for delivering excellence in operational leadership.


Tampa, FL (Feb. 12, 2024) – Tampa General Hospital (TGH) announced that Kelly Cullen, the academic health system’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, has been named to Becker’s Hospital Review’s 2024 list of “Academic Medical Center Chief Operating Officers to Know.” Cullen is one of 60 COOs recognized from academic medical centers across the U.S. and one of only two COOs from the state of Florida included on the list.

Cullen was recognized for her leadership of all clinical and operational strategies at Tampa General, which enable the academic health system — and the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine’s primary teaching hospital — to train the next generation of health care providers, conduct groundbreaking research, advance innovative clinical trials and deliver superior patient outcomes. In her role, she partners closely with the USF College of Nursing to create and optimize workforce pipeline strategies for their students, and also leads emergency and disaster preparedness. Through her work, she plays an instrumental role in ideating, executing and managing initiatives that improve patient safety, quality of care, efficiency and care experience.

“Kelly innately understands the unique value we offer to our community and the broader health care industry as a leading academic health system,” said John Couris, president and CEO of Tampa General Hospital. “Her ability to forge and foster collaborative relationships in service of our team, our patients and our mission has made a meaningful impact on our organization and the region.”

Additionally, Cullen is spearheading Tampa General’s five-year, $550 million Master Facility Plan — the largest in the organization’s history. This landmark capital commitment positions Tampa General to bring the most advanced technology and innovative care and clinical research capabilities into the region through the creation of Tampa Bay’s Medical and Research District in downtown Tampa and the surrounding areas.

The Master Facility Plan includes the construction of a recently announced 13-story Surgical, Neuroscience & Transplant Pavilion on the main hospital campus, which will add 144 beds and 32 operating room suites. Cullen is further supporting the academic health system’s continued growth and footprint expansion with the recent acquisition and integration of three new acute care hospitals and their affiliated care locations in Citrus and Hernando counties, now known as TGH North, increasing access to world-class care and services statewide.

“I firmly believe one of the keys to succeeding in this role has been to surround myself with a world-class team that not only works relentlessly to deliver results but is driven by a deep connection to our organization’s purpose,” Cullen said. “I’m grateful to be included, and to have the work of my dedicated team recognized, on this list alongside an impressive cohort of operations leaders across the nation.”

Becker’s Hospital Review is a leading source of hospital business news and analysis for the health care industry. Cullen and the remainder of this year’s “Academic Medical Center Chief Operating Officers to Know” honorees are profiled online here.