Each week, #SpanningtheNeed will present an “Inspirational Person of the Week’ and have a “Q & A” with one of its many gifted individuals and/or groups who are willing to go out of their own way to help others. This week’s featured is Dr. James Kravec from Mercy Health.
Name: James Kravec MD
Position: Chief Clinical Officer
Organization: Mercy Health Youngstown and Lorain
As the Mercy Health Lorain and Youngstown markets chief clinical officer, Dr. James Kravec is responsible for providing physician executive leadership for the markets of Lorain and Youngstown’s clinical enterprises, which includes the over 1500 physicians and advanced practice clinicians of the five hospital medical staffs, two employed medical groups and the market’s clinically integrated network and accountable care organization.
Dr. Kravec is a Youngstown native and was born at St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital. He graduated from Youngstown State University and earned his medical degree from Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) and completed his residency in internal medicine at Summa Health Akron City Hospital. He is board certified in both internal medicine and hospice and palliative medicine and he graduated from the Mercy Health Leadership Academy in 2012. He actively practices internal medicine and is a faculty member of the internal medicine residency and transitional year residency at St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital.
He has served as program director of the St. Elizabeth Youngstown Transitional Residency and as associate medical director of Hospice of the Valley and most recently as President of Mercy Health Physicians Youngstown and as a board member of Mercy Health Physicians. As a medical staff leader, he has served as Chairman of the Department of Internal Medicine and Treasurer/Secretary of the medical staff St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital. At NEOMED, he has served as President of the Alumni Association, internal medicine clerkship director and Section Chief of General Internal Medicine for the Department of Internal Medicine.
Dr. Kravec has served as a director on the Summa Health System Board from 2013-2020. He also serves as the medical director for the Mahoning County Public Health Department.
Dr. Kravec is married to Dr. Cynthia Kravec and has 4 children, James, Sarah, Michael and Maria and live in Canfield, Ohio.
What made you want to go into this field?
As a child and more so in high school, I wanted to be a physician to help people and more specifically people in my community.
What’s the biggest factor that has helped you be successful?
I am open to continual learning of both science and of new business initiatives.
What is the biggest professional mistake you made along the way?
As Mercy Health hires about 100 new physicians and providers a year, I am one of the final decision makers for each one. Several of the physicians we have hired over the years have not worked out as best fits for our community. I learn with each one.
If you could start all over again, what would you do differently regarding your profession?
I have been blessed in my career. Every decision has led to another point of growth, and I would continue just as I have been.
What inspires you to do good in our community?
I am proud to be from Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley. I have taken this feeling and expanded it now to be proud of the work I do both for Mercy Health in Lorain and Youngstown but also in our communities that we serve. We have been given much from God and it is our duty to spread out and hep others.
What do you enjoy most about volunteering in our community?
I have been given a lot of opportunities in the community I serve. I feel like I have a duty to give back to my community and that is the main reason I enjoy helping out when I am needed.
What is your best accomplishment/experience in life?
I am most proud of my family. My wife is a physician also and I get stopped all the time by her patients who tell me what a wonderful physician she is. I knew this when we were in medical school and residency together in Akron! Also, our four children are such good people who have a wonderful future ahead. My experience in seeing them grow and in the 20 years of marriage to my wife are the best experience in my life.
A favorite quote that you live by?
This is not so much a quote as is a phrase that I despise. The phrase is “it’s not my job” said by someone when not wanting to do something. This can be at work or at home. As part of a team, it is all our jobs to accomplish a task. Sometimes, we learn more by doing something that may not be seen as our core job and help the team reach the goal.