Tom Dee selected as the 2024 Citizen of the Year

Thomas A. Dee, President and CEO of Southwestern Vermont Medical Center (SVMC)

Vermont Business Magazine The Vermont Chamber of Commerce has selected Thomas A. Dee, President and CEO of Southwestern Vermont Medical Center (SVMC) as the 2024 Citizen of the Year. He was selected for the award for his outstanding contributions to southern Vermont, particularly his impactful efforts in health care and community development. The award will be presented at a celebratory event on Thursday, August 1, at the Everett Mansion at Southern Vermont College in Bennington.

The award is presented annually by the Vermont Chamber to honor an outstanding Vermonter who has made major contributions to the betterment of Vermont; has been distinguished through outstanding service to their community and region; and typifies the true spirit of service and self-sacrifice in representing the finest ideals of Vermont citizenship. 

“Tom has put heart and soul into improving the quality of health care – and the quality of life - in southern Vermont, while also taking visionary steps to ensure that excellent health care will be sustainable in the decades to come,” stated Kathy Fisher, Chair, SVMC Board of Directors. “And, given Tom’s understanding of the impact of socioeconomic factors on population health, he has also played a vital role in the redevelopment of downtown Bennington.” 

“I’m humbled by this honor and grateful for the attention it brings to SVMC and the community of Bennington, which I call home,” said Tom Dee. “I have always strived to be a good steward of this health care system and, while I consider myself a small part of its more than 100-year history, I understand the crucial role we have in the communities we serve and in the State of Vermont. This has always motivated me to move SVMC forward and support our community, where I can.”

“In his 14-year tenure, Tom Dee’s dedication to SVMC and southwestern Vermont has been pivotal to improving the local economy, and raising the bar for what it means to be a community leader,” stated Betsy Bishop, President of the Vermont Chamber. “We are proud to award this recognition to Tom Dee and look forward to bringing Vermonters together to celebrate in Bennington.” 

The award dates back to 1964 and previous recipients include Senator Patrick Leahy, Barbara Snelling, Antonio Pomerleau, and Ken Squier. Registration to attend the celebration is now open. For more information, visit the Citizen of the Year event website

About Tom Dee 

Thomas A. Dee is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Southwestern Vermont Medical Center (SVMC) in Bennington, VT. Dee has over 33 years of experience as a hospital CEO. Under Dee’s management, the integrated health system has attained twelve consecutive years of positive operating performance and has been recognized with numerous state and national awards for quality of care, community leadership and workplace excellence.

He was recently named to Becker’s Hospital Review’s list of 110 rural hospital and health system CEOs to know for 2024. Dee led in the planning and implementation of the affiliation of SVMC with Dartmouth Health, commencing in 2012 with the formation of Dartmouth-Hitchcock Putnam Group Practice - a 150 member multi-specialty provider group. In 2023, SVMC became an institutional member of Dartmouth Health.

Before SVMC, Dee worked for Health Alliance in Kingston, NY, an integrated health system of three hospitals. He was president and Chief Executive Officer of the 222-bed Benedictine Hospital for more than 17 years. Dee has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a master's in Healthcare Administration, both from Xavier University in Ohio. 

About the Vermont Chamber of Commerce

The Vermont Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to advancing the Vermont economy. Trusted by the businesses that make living, working, and thriving in Vermont possible, we prioritize collaboration and uphold the core values that define our state. As the preeminent not-for-profit business organization, we advocate, build community, and provide resources for businesses statewide.

Source: Montpelier, VT (April 2, 2024) – The Vermont Chamber of Commerce