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June 06. 2012 11:31PM

Guinta's wife resigns post at CMC

MANCHESTER — Morgan Smith, the wife of Congressman Frank Guinta, no longer works as the chief spokesman for Catholic Medical Center, a hospital official confirmed Wednesday.

“She’s resigned. I can confirm she resigned from the hospital,” said Alex Walker, general counsel for the hospital. He said the resignation took place earlier this week.

Walker would not answer questions about the suddenness of the resignation or whether it was forced. He said the hospital does not discuss employee personnel issues.

Smith was director of marketing, communications and organizational development for the West Side hospital, a job she held for about two years. She had previously been director of organizational development and training at the hospital.

Smith became the hospital’s chief spokesman in June 2010, as a proposed affiliation between Dartmouth-Hitchcock and CMC was falling apart.

She addressed issues such as the departure of hospital president and chief-executive Alyson Pitman Giles, contraception mandates under the Obama health care law, budget cuts and layoffs.

Usually, she kept her husband out of her work. But two weeks ago, Guinta was in a photograph CMC issued on an unrelated topic — the hospital’s high grades for cardiac care and quality patient experience.

A message left on her cell phone Wednesday was not returned. A spokesman for U.S. Rep. Frank Guinta, R-N.H., said he would pass on requests for interviews to Guinta and Smith.

“I can’t talk about anything beyond the official duties of this office,” said Guinta spokesman J. Mark Powell.

In a prepared statement, Walker said: “Morgan has been with CMC for the past four years and has made many significant contributions to our organization.”

Those contributions include the hospital’s Leadership Academy, Management Boot camp and many excellent and high-profile marketing and advertising campaigns, Walker said.

“We will miss Morgan’s leadership, intelligence and dedication to CMC and we wish her nothing but the best,” he said.

Walker said other people in the marketing and communications office will handle Smith’s duties for the time being. He said he expects a new communications director will eventually be hired.

Smith, the mother of two school-aged children, had previously held a temporary job with DEKA. The New Hampshire Union Leader placed her in the 40 Under Forty class of 2002. The designation recognizes up and coming leaders of the state.

A search for a new president at CMC is ongoing, Waker said. The hospital has contracted with Witt/Kieffer, an executive search firm, to assist in the selection.

A president is expected to be named by Labor Day and to join the hospital by year’s end.

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Mark Hayward may be reached at mhayward@unionleader.com.



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