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January 18, 2023 

Independent Health President and CEO, Michael W. Cropp, M.D., Announces Plans for Leadership Succession

Independent Health elevates Jim Dunlop to president to assist with leadership transition, as part of the company’s strategic succession plan

Jim DunlopJim DunlopBUFFALO, N.Y. (January 18, 2024) – Independent Health, Western New York’s local, non-profit health plan for more than 40 years, announced today the implementation of strategic leadership succession plans. This strategic succession plan will ensure a seamless transition for Independent Health as the company further deepens its longstanding commitment to quality, affordability and overall value of health care.

As part of the leadership succession planning process, President and CEO, Michael W. Cropp, M.D., will remain CEO of Independent Health, and he will be supported by current Chief Financial Officer Jim Dunlop who will be elevated to the role of President effective February 26. Dr. Cropp and Dunlop will work collaboratively to steward the company’s succession plans and guide Independent Health into its next phase of growth while preserving its tradition of excellence as an independent, not-for-profit health plan in Western New York.

As CEO, Dr. Cropp will continue to guide the company's overarching direction and will remain responsible for high-level decisions, setting the company’s vision, and spearheading long-term planning. Simultaneously, Jim’s role of president will take on a dynamic and integral function. Jim will be at the forefront of the organization’s core processes, ensuring seamless functionality across all departments. His focus will be on facilitating the company's vision, initiatives, and cultivating a vibrant organizational culture.”

“I’m especially proud of all the work we’ve done to improve the health of our members and our community while providing enriching career opportunities for our employees. We’ve been recognized regionally and nationally for excellence in quality, service and innovation — but what truly matters most is how we’ve helped people, improved lives and strengthened our community,” said Dr. Cropp. “The formula is simple – put members, employees and the community above anything else. I am committed to ensuring a sustainable future for Independent Health by implementing a thoughtful succession plan that will continue to solidify our mission of providing incomparable healthcare solutions and driving positive change in the industry and in Western New York."

Dunlop brings a wealth of experience and a proven track record of success in the healthcare industry. He was appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Independent Health in 2021, and previously served as CFO of Catholic Health System. His expertise in healthcare finance and transformation will be critical in helping Independent Health and the broader community navigate the ongoing evolution of the healthcare sector. Dunlop is a Western New York native who currently lives in Orchard Park.  

"I am honored to continue my journey with Independent Health as its President and support the organization as we usher in the next era of leadership, all while building upon Dr. Cropp’s impressive legacy,” said Dunlop. “Dr. Cropp’s approach to the delivery of health care has been extraordinary to watch – he considers physicians we work with our partners and keeps our members and the wider community at the forefront when implementing new initiatives. The community is better for Dr. Cropp’s great work and innovation, and the company is solidly positioned as a leading and highly respected health plan both locally and nationally thanks to his guidance. I step into the role of President with an unshakable commitment to our mission and great admiration for Dr. Cropp and look forward to working with him to ensure a seamless transition.”

“Our succession plan will make certain that we have the right leaders in place for a seamless transition. We are grateful to Jim Dunlop for accepting this elevated role as President and look forward to working with him to ensure the organization’s long-term stability, growth and commitment to members,” said Dr. Kathleen Mylotte, Independent Health Board Chairperson.

Independent Health will immediately begin recruiting to fill Dunlop’s previous role of CFO.

The Western New York-based company serves more than 360,000 members and consistently earns high national honors for its innovative and patient-centric healthcare delivery. Recently, Independent Health became one of just two health plans in the nation to earn the highest-possible rating for clinical quality and member satisfaction in the National Committee for Quality Assurance’s (NCQA) Commercial Health Plan Ratings. It is also the only Western New York insurer to be named a 5-Star Rated plan for 2024 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for its entire Medicare product portfolio. 

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