Joe Pajor, Retired, serving as part time consultant with my wife Kathy’s consulting firm
CT Scanner (CS) Joe Pajor (JP)
(CS) Please provide a brief summary of your work history (companies worked for titles):
(JP) 42 years in hospital finance, Meriden- Wallingford Hospital [now mid-state]72-78, Internal Auditor, Assistant Controller MT Sinai Hospital[ acquired by St. Francis]78-80 [Director of Finance Division], Hospital of St. Raphael, 1980-2000, director in various revenue cycle activities Stamford Hospital 2000-2007, Administrative Director Patient Financial Services, Norwalk Hospital 2007-2014 Administrative Director Revenue Cycle.
(CS) When did you join HFMA? What committees have you joined and positions have you held within HFMA?
(JP) President, for chapter as well as serving on numerous committees such as Program, Annual Meeting, Certification, Sponsorship, Region 1 Executive, HFMA National Advisory Board for Revenue Cycle, National Chapter 2.0 Committee on Regional Executives.
(CS) What made you join HFMA?
(JP) I was told to by my CFO at Meriden Wallingford Hospital immediately upon my hire, but soon looked forward to every monthly meeting at Yankee Silversmith in Wallingford, where every hospital CFO and key financial staff met to discuss state and national health care financial issues.
(CS)What have you found to be the benefits of joining HMFA?
(JP) So many, staying connected to national and state issues. Never would have known other health care financial professionals if not for HFMA. Networking from the after the meeting reception in the 70’s at the Yankee Silversmith, to the current networking opportunities at chapter events and Region 1 Conference.
(CS)What is your favorite event that the HFMA has held?
(JP) Locally, the CT HFMA annual meeting has become a must attend, since it highlights what is happening in CT Health Care: and the closing panel provides insight into CT Leadership thinking. This past year’s Region 1 provided a regional look at health care issues and its closing panel was great – not only for the speaker’s comments, but their interaction with each other as three CEO’s had an opportunity to join in a meaningful dialogue.
(CS)What piece of advice would you give to a new member of the HFMA?
(JP) Get out of your comfort zone as soon as possible and get involved. Almost everyone is reluctant to get involved, but if you start to volunteer and ask to be on a committee, good things will start to happen. And once you are on a committee, be proactive and ask for responsibilities. Soon you will be meeting many great members throughout the state and having a good time doing it.
My tag line for HFMA is, “Learn, Laugh, and Commiserate”; which I think captures what HFMA meant to me.
(CS) Can you tell us a little about yourself? Like your family life or hobbies and interests?
(JP) I have been married to Kathy for 20 years and she too has been the president of the Connecticut chapter and Region 1 Executive. We have four children and 6 grandchildren, with one more on the way. My interests are: the Boston Red Sox, travel and the theater – having been a Long Wharf Theater season ticket holder for over 30 years, and now enjoy going down to New York for Broadway shows. I have jogged in 5 marathons (60 pounds ago); NYC -3 DC, and LA., jogged a mile in all 50 states, attended a game in every major league ball park, been to 43 countries, mostly in Europe, the Caribbean, and the Far East. I appeared on Broadway in Monty Pythons Holy Grail, as I was selected to appear from the audience with the cast during the show, and they presented with me an award. One great recent travel experience was spending a week in Cuba doing volunteer work on a farm and living with native Cubans.
(CS) Are you a member of any other organizations career oriented or personal?
(JP) I previously served as Chairman of the Board of CT Better Business Bureau, and Columbus House (CH), a homeless shelter and transitional housing not for profit in New Haven. I still volunteer with CH, and in a strange twist, my current CH involvement ledt me to be on the startup of the Better Business Board Foundation. I am serving now as Board member and Secretary which will soon be providing consumer feedback on Connecticut not for profit charities.
(CS)What are your goals for your future career wise, personally and within HFMA?
(JP) My goals are to take a carpe diem approach to the max in my retirement years. On May 26th I completed my role as Chair of the Region 1 HFMA Conference held at the Mohegan Sun that drew over 430 attendees. From now on, my HFMA involvement will be limited to providing my two cents when asked by either the chapter or Region 1. With my 45+ year membership, I have lots of penny experiences from which to provide my 2 cents.
(CS)Please feel free to add any other information that you feel would be useful or fun for the other members to know.
My only regret with HFMA was that I waited until my late 50’s to get involved on the chapter leadership level. Since I wanted to give back for all HFMA did for me in my career, I realize now I should have been more involved in the leadership ranks much earlier in my career for the all the value and enjoyment it gave to me.
Thank you Joe, for all your hard work and service to the organization.
by Kathy Rizzetta
Senior Staff Reporter