Forsyth native Paul Smith as been named the next president of the Mid-American Group, a large hospital chain in the Cincinnati area. Smith is the son of retired Forsyth physician Dr. Patton Smith and his wife, Virginia.

The Mid-American Group includes seven hospitals that are part of the Bon Secours Mercy Health group. Smith will be over Mercy’s five hospitals in Greater Cincinnati as well as two others in Ohio and three in Kentucky. Smith spent the last 11 years as an executive with Community Health Systems, one of the largest hospital groups in the nation. Most recently, he was president of operations for Division III of Franklin, Tenn.-based CHS, which entailed supporting 26 acute-care hospitals in six states.

He will join Cincinnati-based Bon Secours Mercy Health on July 1, reporting to chief operating officer Brian Smith and Dr. Wael Haidar, who is chief clinical officer. Paul Smith “brings to our ministry a strong work ethic, proven communication skills and the ability to develop and maintain productive relationships in the industry and the community, as well as strong business acumen,” Brian Smith said.

Paul Smith will replace Mike Garfield, who retired earlier this year after having been president of Bon Secours Mercy Health’s Mid-American Group since September 2018. Smith will oversee more than 14,000 Bon Secours Mercy Health employees who work in the Mid-American Group.

Smith had been a division president of CHS since January 2016. Before that he oversaw 38 hospitals across South Carolina, Georgia and Florida for a year. He joined CHS in 2008 as vice president of operations for 25 hospitals spread across seven states in the Southeast. Smith received a bachelor’s degree in business from Mercer University in 1985 and an MBA with a focus on health administration from Georgia State University in 1988.