Health Leaders Marketing Awards | Guest facilitators
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Guest facilitators


Gary Adamson is chief experience officer of Starizon, a consulting firm dedicated to helping organizations intentionally design the experiences that will significantly transform them and strengthen their brand success. Adamson began his career in 1978 as vice president of Swedish Health Systems in Denver, where he started the nation’s first and most comprehensive hospital-based wellness program and consulted with hundreds of hospitals on how to build healthier communities. In 1983 he began Unison Marketing and Communications where he worked nationwide with a wide-variety of healthcare organizations to develop unified innovations in strategy, operations, and communications. Adamson is the creator of the proprietary “6-I’s of Experience” process, six design principles to provide the basis for transforming goods and services into Experiences.

Sonia Rhodes is the vice president of Customer Strategy, The Sharp Experience & The Sharp University for Sharp HealthCare, a not-for-profit integrated health care delivery system, and San Diego’s largest private employer. Rhodes leads The Sharp Experience – an organizational performance improvement initiative designed to transform the health care experience for staff, physicians and customers and her passion to make the health care experience the best that it can be is evidenced in all that she does. As a result of this focused organizational improvement effort, President George W. Bush and Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez awarded Sharp HealthCare as one of five organizations to receive the 2007 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, the nation’s highest Presidential honor for quality and organizational performance excellence. In addition to The Sharp Experience, Rhodes also conceptualized, launched and actively directs The Sharp University, a corporate university focused on the education and development of over 1,400 Sharp leaders and nearly 14,000 Sharp associates. Rhodes also provides oversight and leadership for Sharp’s overarching customer strategy, marketing technologies and research endeavors, including web strategy and design, customer contact centers, 24-hour nurse advice service and consumer research. With over fifteen years at Sharp HealthCare and over twenty years in the health care industry, Rhodes is a frequent national speaker on creating better health care experiences. In 2005 she was one of the first in the nation to be recognized for her individual achievement in the emerging Experience Economy, receiving the Experience Management Achievement (EMA) award. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of California and Santa Barbara in health education and sociology.