The 2017 Leaders in Health Care Awards: Outstanding Medical Center Executive — Seattle

Gold: Norm Hubbard; Silver: Cynthia J. Hecker

Gold Award
Norm Hubbard, Executive Vice President
Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Seattle

Norm Hubbard’s passion to eliminate cancer in his lifetime is a constant motivator in his stewardship of the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. As EVP, he is responsible for overall strategic leadership and operational management of SCCA, one of the nation’s top 10 cancer centers. Until a cancer-free day comes, he says, “I want to do everything I can to help more patients get the best care possible in an environment that supports continual improvement in both the care they receive and the ways that we deliver that care.” Hubbard joined SCCA in 1998 as its chief operating officer. He was charged with uniting the research teams and cancer specialists of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle Children’s and UW Medicine. He compares his leadership style to piloting a boat: “Keep your eye on the horizon and make sure you get light below decks.” In other words, he helps navigate the organization through a sporadic and ever-evolving health care environment and makes sure that his crew understands and is committed to the mission. Hubbard led SCCA through its first expansion in 2005 and is now leading a second expansion, with construction set to begin this year and open to patients in 2020. The new space will add 250,000 square feet, more than doubling SCCA’s current space. 

Silver Award
Cynthia J. Hecker, Executive Director
Northwest Hospital & Medical Center, Seattle

Cindy Hecker oversees strategic direction, manages overall operations and clinical care, and represents Northwest Hospital & Medical Center as part of the UW Medicine system leadership team. Hecker began her 35-year career with UW Medicine as a registered nurse at the bedside, moving quickly into nursing leadership and then to successive senior administrative positions, including 12 years as chief nursing officer and senior associate administrator for inpatient operations at Harborview; assistant dean for clinical practice, UW School of Nursing; senior associate administrator, clinical operations/integration for UW Medicine; and interim chief health system officer for the entire UW Medicine health system.

Related Content


Within the critical world of health care, what happens when the patient is the hospital building? How do Healthcare Facility Directors & Construction Managers make needed changes to their aging buildings, while ensuring no downtime or loss of comfort to their patients?

Dr. Paul Ramsey begins most weekday mornings by rowing on Lake Union. On weekends, he’s likely to do bike rides of 50 or 100 miles. These rituals — daily journeys, if you will — have helped prepare him for a 40-year-plus career in medicine and administration.

In a partnership with the Washington Health Alliance (WHA), Seattle Business magazine this year selected one category from the WHA’s annual Community Checkup ranking of health care organizations and looked at the overall performance of the medical groups serving commercially insured patients.

For Fred Hutch researcher Dr. Oliver Press, academic medical research is all about sharing and collaborating. “If enough people work together on a problem,” he asserts, “we can conquer it.”