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Yvette Cope Selected as LVMC Chief Executive Officer

  • Category: LVMC Updates
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  • Written By: Nora Wallace
Yvette Cope Selected as LVMC Chief Executive Officer

The Lompoc Valley Medical Center Board of Directors announced on Thursday evening the selection Yvette Cope as its next Chief Executive Officer.

Cope, the hospital’s Chief Operating Officer/Chief Nursing Officer, will succeed Steve Popkin, who has held the post since 2019. Popkin is retiring in September. Cope will take the helm of the hospital district on Sept. 4.

The board announced the decision at its meeting June 27.

“The Board of Directors filters every decision by asking one question: ‘What is best for the District?’” said LVMC Board President Leslie Kelly. “Selecting a new CEO was no different. After considering the community, the staff, and our vision for Lompoc Valley Medical Center, Yvette Cope was the logical and most qualified unanimous choice for CEO.”

Cope, who has extensive experience in healthcare, joined the LVMC staff in 2010. During her career at the hospital, she has held the positions of director of the medical-surgical unit, director of the critical care unit and director of the emergency department.

She was promoted to Assistant Nurse Executive in 2014 and rose to the position of Chief Nursing Officer in January 2018. She became Chief Operating Officer/Chief Nursing Officer in December 2022.

“I am honored to step into the role of Chief Executive Officer,” Cope said. “I have seen firsthand the dedication of our incredible staff and medical professionals, who are committed to providing the best quality of care and timely access for our community. I am dedicated to leading our exceptional team in expanding and enhancing our services, ensuring we strive for excellence in all areas. Together, we will uphold our commitment to establishing Lompoc Valley Medical Center as a model of healthcare excellence.”

During her tenure at LVMC, Cope led the launching of the inpatient dialysis service at the acute hospital; initiated the hospital’s Structured Interdisciplinary Bedside Rounding team; was project leader of the Acute Stroke-Ready Hospital Program; led the expansion of skilled nursing beds at the Comprehensive Care Center and served as administrative lead for the completion of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Center of Excellence as well as designation of the hospital as a Blue Distinction facility.

Cope is also administrative lead for the Robotic Surgery Steering Committee, supporting the hospital’s performance of more than 700 robotic surgeries in the past two years and its designation as the only Central Coast hospital awarded a Center of Excellence status.

Cope holds a Master of Science degree in nursing administration from California State University at Dominguez Hills. She also earned a Bachelor of Science degree with a concentration in nursing from Kent State University. She completed an Executive Program with the American College of Healthcare Executives and became a Certified Healthcare Financial Professional this year with the Healthcare Financial Management Association.

Cope previously worked at Sierra Vista Medical Center in San Luis Obispo, Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center in Arizona, UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento and Duke University Medical Center in North Carolina.

She is a 2012 graduate of Leadership Lompoc Valley. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the FoodBank of Santa Barbara County and Savie Health. 

Lompoc Valley Medical Center consists of a 60-bed acute care hospital, 110-bed skilled nursing facility, several multispecialty Lompoc Health medical clinics and a sleep disorder center.

The hospital district was established in 1946 as a state healthcare district and is governed by an elected Board of Directors. 

Yvette Cope and Leslie Kelley