Northwell’s Michael Dowling named a Glassdoor Top CEO in 2021

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Northwell Health President and Chief Executive Officer Michael J. Dowling has been named to the Top CEOs 2021 list by the job recruiting site Glassdoor, which compiled voluntary employee feedback from thousands of companies to rank America’s 100 best leaders.

Dowling earned a Glassdoor Employees’ Choice Award with a 96 percent employee approval rating, which placed him No. 22 among large company CEOs in the United States.

Dowling ranked second among the nation’s top health care/hospital CEOs on Glassdoor’s list, and he was first among all New York CEOs. Glassdoor also ranked Mr. Dowling among the nation’s Top CEOs in 2019, placing 44th overall. Due to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, Glassdoor did not issue a Top CEO list in 2020.

“I am especially proud to receive this distinguished leadership recognition. I am dedicating this to our 76,000 employees – frontline staff who worked selflessly to care for the huge influx of COVID patients in our facilities during the first and second surge of the coronavirus pandemic, and all employees behind-the-scenes supporting our efforts during the public health crisis,” said Dowling. “Strong leadership and teamwork is a reflection of the entire organization. Northwell is filled with committed and passionate leaders at every level. Our employees constantly adapted to change–innovating treatments and coronavirus testing as well as mobilizing to provide COVID vaccines to staff members and communities throughout the New York metropolitan area.”

New York State found itself at the epicenter of the pandemic in March and April 2020. Mr. Dowling could be seen inside the hardest-hit hospitals while working closely with federal, state and local officials to stem the tide.

Northwell treated more than 200,000 COVID-19 patients across the health system over a 15-month span, nearly 20 percent of all cases in the state.

Dowling joined Northwell in 1995 as executive vice president and chief operating officer after 12 years in New York State government overseeing health and human services in the administration of former Gov. Mario M. Cuomo, including serving as commissioner of the state Department of Social Services.

In 2002, he was named president and CEO of Northwell, which has since grown to become a clinical, academic and research enterprise that includes 23 hospitals, more than 830 outpatient facilities, medical and nursing schools, a nationally recognized research institute, the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research and more than 76,000 employees – the state’s largest private-sector workforce.

Immediately after becoming CEO, Dowling developed the country’s largest corporate university in the health care industry, the Center for Learning and Innovation, while helping to create a visionary approach to medical education highlighted by the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell.

Dowling also co-authored two books in 2020: “Leading Through a Pandemic: The Inside Story of Humanity, Innovation: Lessons learned during the COVID-19 Crisis,” a look at the health’s system’s response to COVID-19, and the biography, “After the Roof Caved In: An Immigrant’s Journey from Ireland to America.”

“Over the past year, company leaders around the world faced unprecedented challenges to support employees during the COVID-19 crisis. Now, the employees have spoken and it’s clear that these CEOs excelled and found new ways to support their people when the world of work flipped upside down,” said Christian Sutherland-Wong, Glassdoor chief executive officer. “Through a challenging year, it’s inspiring to see Top CEOs who, according to their employees, adapted to change, redefined visions and led with transparency while putting the health and safety of employees first. I extend my sincerest congratulations to this year’s Employees’ Choice Award winners.”

When employees submit reviews about their employer on Glassdoor, they are asked to rate various about their employment experience, including their overall satisfaction and other workplace attributes like senior management.

As part of these ratings, employees are also asked to rate whether they approve, disapprove or are neutral about their CEO’s performance. The average CEO approval rating is 73 percent among the approximately 1.5 million employers reviewed on Glassdoor.

Glassdoor’s Top CEOs in 2021 were determined using company reviews shared by U.S.-based employees between May2, 2020 and May 1, 2021. The final list is compiled using Glassdoor’s proprietary algorithm, taking into account the quantity, quality and consistency of reviews.

See the complete list of all Glassdoor’s Top CEOs in 2021 at:,8.htm



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