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Mark Bassett has joined the staff of USA Mitchell Cancer Institute as associate director for Operations and Finance.
Carrying either of those titles could leave one wondering what exactly a person does. Bassett explains that he’s part of the executive leadership team, working hard on strategic planning, operations, finance and recruiting — working to “ensure MCI’s viability financially and operationally.”
“We need to grow in terms of volume, finance and morale, and also in our community image,” Bassett said.
On a practical level, the starting point is recruiting radiation oncology physicians. He’s looking for those uncommon individuals who have not only excellent skills, but also the commitment to academic medicine and the ability to work in concert with the MCI mission.
Bassett said he believes in the need for everyone at the institution to be fully engaged in support of that mission. He likes to “turn the organizational chart upside down.” It creates a purpose for every individual, and it ensures that everyone understands that they are critical to the success of the organization. His personal measure of success in leadership is “to create an environment conducive to success for all who seek it.”
That, in turn, can help the institution take its rightful place as the preeminent health-care leader in the community. Its university affiliation alone should give it credence in the community, he said.
“We’re the regional think tank and the only major cancer research center along the Gulf Coast from Houston to Tampa,” he said. “We have an obligation to those that we serve to fulfill our potential.”
Bassett is an Iowa native, but has had Alabama ties for his most of his career. He earned a degree in business from the University of Alabama and went on to complete an MBA and a Ph.D. in Health Administration.
A health-care veteran, Bassett started his health-care career at one of the Mayo Clinic’s outlying operations in Wisconsin, and then spent a decade and a half at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He most recently worked in leadership roles in a medical center in Kentucky — and also taught MBA courses in Beijing, China.
He is married to Aihua Bassett. They have one daughter, Shelby, who is a first-year medical student at USA College of Medicine. Bassett participates in a number of sports, including cross-country bicycling, golf, and tennis. He plays guitar, thrives on travel and enjoys following politics.
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