Chief nursing executive Maria Ducharme promoted to president of The Miriam Hospital

January 4, 2021

Ducharme is the third female president of the hospital since its founding by women in 1925

Maria Ducharme, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, has been promoted from her position as senior vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer to president of The Miriam Hospital, effective January 1, 2021.  Dr. Ducharme is the first nurse to be promoted from within to the top leadership position in the hospital’s 96-year history.

Dr. Ducharme, who has spent her entire professional career at The Miriam Hospital, was appointed following a national search for an individual of exceptional experience and caliber. Following her graduation from Rhode Island College in 1987, she was hired as a cardiovascular medical/surgical nurse. Her impressive breadth of experiences has included leadership roles in inpatient nursing, respiratory therapy, and rehabilitation services. In 2010, she was named senior vice president for patient care services and chief nursing officer of The Miriam.  

“Dr. Ducharme has dedicated her career to The Miriam Hospital’s mission of providing advanced medical care at the highest quality level in a community setting,” said Lifespan President and CEO Timothy J. Babineau, MD.  “I am so pleased that the Lifespan community will continue to benefit from Dr. Ducharme’s deep knowledge, experience and expertise as she leads The Miriam Hospital as its next president.  Dr. Ducharme is a highly energetic, widely respected, and greatly admired leader – both inside and outside the hospital--and I know that she will only enhance The Miriam’s already stellar reputation.”

Dr. Ducharme has led some of The Miriam’s most ambitious and successful efforts to achieve excellence in the quality of patient care at the hospital.  Most recently, she has helped lead the hospital’s response to COVID-19, directly overseeing the refinement and deployment of new safety protocols developed in response to the coronavirus pandemic.  Under her stewardship, The Miriam attained four-year Magnet recognition -- considered the gold standard for nursing excellence -- six consecutive times, which is a feat accomplished by only three other hospitals in the United States.

“By cultivating talent within our organization, The Miriam Hospital will now remain under the stewardship of a highly respected leader who, without missing a beat, can continue to enhance The Miriam’s reputation as both an outstanding hospital and employer,” said Lifespan Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Todd Conklin, MBA, CPA. 

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to occupy a role that will be integral to shaping the future of The Miriam Hospital, contributing to the overall strategy of Lifespan and furthering our mission of excellent patient-centered care,” said Dr. Ducharme. “I have had the privilege of working with an amazing group of colleagues, and as I step into this role, I look forward to advancing and enhancing our commitment to being a highly reliable organization, one that has a deep culture of trust and transparency and that continually drives excellence in quality and safety.”

Dr. Ducharme earned a doctor of nursing practice from Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions (2015), a master of science degree in nursing from the University of Rhode Island (1996), and a bachelor of science degree in nursing from Rhode Island College (1987).

She succeeds Arthur J. Sampson, who retired at the end of 2020 after serving as president since 2012. 

Dr. Ducharme lives with her husband, ophthalmologist Joseph Ducharme, MD, in her native Barrington, where she graduated from Barrington High School in 1982. They have three children.