• Denny DeNarvaezDenny DeNarvaez

    President and CEO

    Denny DeNarvaez, president and CEO of Wellmont Health System, has set a standard for innovative healthcare leadership. Caring for patients throughout the Tri-Cities region of Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, Wellmont has about 1,200 beds and employs about 6,500 caregivers and other staff.

    Since joining the organization in 2010, DeNarvaez has led Wellmont in developing a focused strategic direction for the system at all levels. Among other achievements, she created the vision and leadership model for Wellmont Medical Associates, a physician-led and professionally managed organization that empowers physicians to set the direction for patient care.

    DeNarvaez also restructured the oncology service line by creating the Wellmont Cancer Institute, a unified program providing comprehensive, coordinated care across the region and led Holston Valley Medical Center, the system’s largest hospital, to recognition as the best in the nation for interventional carotid care in 2011. She also launched Wellmont’s Healing Environment initiative to enhance the hospital experience for patients and visitors alike.

    DeNarvaez serves as a member of the Governing Council of the American Hospital Association and the board of directors of the Tennessee Hospital Association and Safety Net Hospitals for Pharmaceutical Access.

    An accomplished executive with about 30 years of experience, DeNarvaez previously served with the Sisters of Mercy as CEO for the East and West regions, including Oklahoma and St. Louis, as well as CEO for St. John’s Mercy Health Care, with hospitals and extensive operations in Missouri and Oklahoma. Under her leadership, St. John’s Mercy was named a “best place to work” by Modern Healthcare magazine.

    Prior to leading the Mercy system, DeNarvaez was the president of Abbott Northwestern Hospital, the largest hospital in Minnesota’s Twin Cities, and before that, CEO of Florida Medical Center in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

    DeNarvaez graduated from Drake University with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. She is a certified public accountant and holds leadership certifications from the University of Michigan Business School in Ann Arbor and the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn. She received the Visionary Leadership Award from the Missouri Hospital Association in 2009 and was named one of the Top 25 most influential businesswomen by the St. Louis Business Journal in 2007.


  • YW Tribute to Women empowers women by providing businesses and organizations an opportunity to publicly recognize the outstanding achievements of exceptional women in East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. Every day, the Tri-Cities community is supported and strengthened by women devoted to enriching the quality of life for others. An esteemed panel of out-of-state judges considered numerous nominees in the fields of art, business, education, and community service before selecting 12 award recipients, which included Denny DeNarvaez, president and CEO of Wellmont Health System in the area of business. These woman were honored at an awards banquet in April.