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OPO leadership share their best practices

Published on: Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Chief executive officers (CEOs) from all four of Region 4’s OPOs were featured in an educational video we released in January.

  • Increasing the number of organs available for transplant 

As of June 2, 2016, UNOS Connect is your new resource for educational webinars for transplant professionals. Sign in to access webinar recordings.

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Watch this video to learn how they maximized available donor organs to get more patients transplanted. They shared what they have been doing to establish effective leadership and create a positive culture within their organization. These leaders have worked together over the past few years to achieve a common goal --- maximizing available donor organs in order to get more patients transplanted.

Samples of what you’ll hear if you listen to the entire video:

Texas Organ Sharing Agency (TOSA), San Antonio
“Values and principles such as respect, transparency, integrity, intellectual honesty, and compassion define the goals of this organization in developing and maintaining a positive culture,” stated TOSA CEO Pat Giordano. “Positive culture development is intrinsic to any success…” Mr. Giordano talks about how his OPO is building a culture of trust by empowering staff to do their jobs effectively.

LifeGift, Houston
All four leaders agree that their work in this area is evolving and ongoing. “As part of our ongoing work, we spent a lot of time developing a core purpose....” stated CEO Kevin Myer. “The core purpose of offering hope applies to donor families and those awaiting transplant.” Mr. Myer talks about how this Texas OPO stays focused on its core purpose.

Southwest Transplant Alliance, Dallas
CEO Patricia Niles stated, “we needed a significant culture change and…have made many improvements that have had a positive impact on the number of organs available for transplant.” Ms. Niles shared two areas that her organization addressed:

  • Clinical department turnover
  • Solidifying their financial future

“Being clear about what we do enabled us to have our very narrow focus on saving lives.” Ms. Niles talks about what changes needed to be made at her OPO.

LifeShare of Oklahoma
According to CEO Jeff Orlowski, leadership development was a key strategy in moving his organization from a conservative to an aggressive approach in saving lives. “Basically our organization boiled our mission, vision, and values down to the single core purpose…We save lives, that’s what we are about.” Mr. Orlowski discuss leadership development. 

Do you have thoughts about how to increase the number of organs available for transplant? What has worked for your OPO or for your region? Enter your comments in the Disqus field below or email your ideas to

The next video in the series focuses on how Region 4 OPOs changed their leadership and organizational culture and the specific steps they took to operationalize those changes. You can access it on UNOS Connect.