McLaren Northern Michigan Appoints Dr. John Kennedy as Chief Medical Officer

McLaren Northern Michigan, part of statewide McLaren Health Care, has appointed John Kennedy, MD, MHA, as Chief Medical Officer of the 202-bed regional health care provider. Effective March 11, Dr. Kennedy assumes the role made available upon the retirement of Dr. Andrew McDonagh.

Dr. Kennedy brings more than 20 years of experience leading medical staffs, overseeing an organization’s clinical quality and environment of safe patient care. A psychiatrist by education and training, he is also positioned to further develop McLaren Northern Michigan’s expanded behavioral health program.

“We thank Dr. McDonagh for his service and leadership in his time with McLaren, and wish him the best in his retirement,” said Gar Atchison, McLaren Northern Michigan President and CEO. “In speaking with Dr. Kennedy, it became evident quickly that he is an effective leader who is sincere and passionate about the quality and safety of the care given to our patients, and whose motivation is to provide for the betterment of our community. His genuine nature and commitment to the care of others will serve well in Petoskey, and we are grateful to have him.”

Dr. Kennedy most recently served as the Vice President of Medical Affairs at The Christ Hospital in Cincinnati, which, like McLaren Northern Michigan, is rated 5 stars by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

“It is my pleasure to welcome Dr. Kennedy to McLaren Northern Michigan as our next Chief Medical Officer,” said Dr. Justin Klamerus, McLaren Health Care Executive Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer. “Throughout what has already been an exceptional career, he has demonstrated himself to be an influential leader and effective partner to clinical teams. His experience and proficiency have resulted in organization enhancements to the quality and safety of care environments, and expanding how that care is delivered to a community. We are very pleased that Dr. Kennedy has joined McLaren, and we welcome him to our team.”

Dr. Kennedy began his clinical practice as a staff psychiatrist in Rochester, New York, before advancing his career with administrative and academic roles increasing his areas of responsibility and oversight. He joined the University of Cincinnati as an Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship Director, and Director of Forensic Services, among other roles, while leading the Lindner Center of HOPE as Chief Medical Officer in 2006 before leading the medical staff at Bon Secours Mercy Health hospital as Vice President of Medical Affairs.

Earning his medical degree from The Ohio State University, Dr. Kennedy continued his education at OSU with a Master of Health Administration degree and a psychiatry residency. He also completed a forensic psychiatry fellowship at the University of Rochester in New York.

Learn more about the services offered at McLaren Northern Michigan at

About McLaren Northern Michigan
McLaren Northern Michigan is a 202-bed regional referral center located in Petoskey, serving residents in 22 counties across northern Lower Michigan and the eastern part of the Upper Peninsula. More than 230 physicians represent nearly all medical and surgical specialties, enabling full-service care with an emphasis on cardiology, cancer, orthopedics and neurosciences. McLaren Northern Michigan is a certified Primary Stroke Center, as designated by the Joint Commission. The hospital has a network of primary care providers and specialty care clinics throughout the region, and an outpatient surgery center in Cheboygan. Learn more at

About McLaren Health Care
McLaren Health Care, headquartered in Grand Blanc, Michigan, is a $6.6 billion, fully integrated health care delivery system committed to quality, evidence-based patient care and cost efficiency. The McLaren system includes 13 hospitals in Michigan, ambulatory surgery centers, imaging centers, a 490-member employed primary and specialty care physician network, commercial and Medicaid HMOs covering more than 732,838 lives in Michigan and Indiana, home health, infusion and hospice providers, pharmacy services, a clinical laboratory network and a wholly owned medical malpractice insurance company. McLaren operates Michigan’s largest network of cancer centers and providers, anchored by the Karmanos Cancer Institute, a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the U.S. McLaren has 28,000 full-, part-time and contracted employees and more than 113,000 network providers throughout Michigan, Indiana and Ohio. Learn more at