BJC president and CEO Steve Lipstein receives the St. Louis Citizen of the Year award April 15.
Sponsored by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the annual Citizen of the Year award recognizes civic leadership. Lipstein was announced as the 2013 honoree last December.
John McDonnell, former chairman of McDonnell Douglas Corp. (now The Boeing Co.), a past Citizen of the Year honoree and member of the 2013 selection committee, noted Lipstein’s forward and strategic thinking as a factor in the committee’s choice. “Steve is a very positive influence in the community,” McDonnell told the Post-Dispatch. “He’s always looking for ways the community can be improved and ways that he can help improve the community.”
He added the committee was impressed that, in addition to contributing to a variety of philanthropic causes, Lipstein “puts himself out there” by taking part in events such as the annual MS 150 race to benefit the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
William Danforth, former chancellor of Washington University in St. Louis, is another past winner who served on the 2013 selection committee. Danforth said, “He was able to take BJC HealthCare to the next step and make it extremely successful, to build a wonderful team and wonderful group of hospitals, and work with the School of Medicine to create one of the best and most advanced health care systems in the nation.
“He has a grand vision, a real visionary who looks to the future, who figures out the way things work and tries to make them better,” he said. “He’s a very good operator, able to put things together and work with people and make progress on all fronts. And he always has new ideas of what to do next. I think there are very few people with those qualities.”
“While this kind of recognition comes to a person in the lead role, it shines on all of us who work at and with BJC HealthCare,” said Lipstein. “It reflects on the all-important role BJC and our 26,000 employees serve in the larger St. Louis community.”
Other past Citizen of the Year honorees include James Buford, president and CEO of the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis; Donald Suggs, publisher of the St. Louis American; U.S. Sen. John Danforth; Frankie Muse Freeman, civil rights attorney; Jack and Andy Taylor, Enterprise; and Ozzie Smith, former St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame baseball player.