Page 1 Name: Ninfa M. Saunders, RN, MSN, MBA, PhD Title

 Name: Ninfa M. Saunders, RN, MSN, MBA, PhD
Title: President & COO, Virtua
Biography: Ninfa M. Saunders, RN, MSN, MBA, PhD, assumed the role of president and COO of Virtua in September
2010. Previously, she served as executive vice president for health services. Dr. Saunders is responsible for all
healthcare operations throughout Virtua's four hospitals, two rehab centers, senior services, home care, ambulatory and
outpatient services.
Dr. Saunders has more than 30 years of clinical nursing and hospital administrative experience. Prior to joining Virtua,
she served on the Governor's Georgia Cancer Coalition, which was created by Governor Roy Barnes to develop regional
centers of excellence for cancer prevention, detection, treatment and research using funds from the tobacco settlement.
Previously, Dr. Saunders served as chief operating officer for the Dekalb Medical Center in Decatur, GA. During her
nearly 10-year tenure, gross revenue at the Center grew by more than 59% and the quality assurance program received
the Georgia Hospital Association Award for Best Initiative. In this position, she oversaw the expansion of a new surgical
center, an expanded intensive care unit, a new emergency department and the purchase of a home health service
For the preceding 13 years, Dr. Saunders served as director of nursing resources for Emory University Hospital in
Atlanta, GA. From 1974-1980, she held various roles at St. Barnabas in Livingston, NJ, including assistant vice president
of nursing, director of critical care, in-service instructor and assistant head nurse. She started her career as a staff nurse
in the intensive care unit of Riley Memorial Hospital in Meridian, MS.
Dr. Saunders earned a Master of Business Administration from Emory University in Atlanta, GA, a Master of Science in
Nursing from the Rutgers University in Newark, NJ, and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Concordia College in
Manila, Philippines. She also attended the Healthcare Executive Program at Wharton School of the University of
Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA, and the International Business Program at the London School of Business in London,
England. She completed her Doctorate in Healthcare Administration at the Medical University of South Carolina. She
received her Certification as a Black Belt in Six Sigma from the University of Michigan, College of Engineering.
Dr. Saunders was recently appointed as Dean's Professor at the Mayers School of Business and serves in the Board of
Visitors of the University Sciences of Philadelphia. She is an associate professor at the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of
Nursing at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. She also served as a faculty of the NCHL and GE Leadership Program at
GE's Jack Welch Learning Center in Crotonville, New York. Saunders was appointed to the Advisory Board of Forbes
Magazine in 2007. She is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, a board member of the American
Heart Association, vice-chair of the board for the Diocese of Trenton, a member of the Head's Council for Moorestown
Friends School, and a member of the board of the New Jersey, Chamber of Commerce.
Most recently Dr. Saunders was named as 2010 "Women of Distinction" by the Girls Scout of America.,In 2008 she was
nominated to the "Top 100 Most Powerful People in Healthcare". In 2007, she was named "Woman of Distinction" by the
Philadelphia Business Journal. She was named one of the 25 most influential women in New Jersey in NJ Biz
magazine's 2004 "Women of Influence" Awards. Dr. Saunders was also named one of the most "Outstanding Women of
Burlington County" in 2004 by the Burlington County Advisory Council on Women and the Burlington County Board of
Chosen Freeholders. She was recognized for her dedication to bringing the most advanced medical care and the highest
clinical quality to the region.