Neeysa Biddle is uniquely familiar with the level of sacrifice and dedication required to leave a substantial legacy. She has spent her career focused on advancing the care of the chronically ill and compromised. At an early age, she fell in love with healthcare as a radiology report transcriber and worked hard to finance her education to progress in the field.
Biddle spent the first 25 years of her career in health information management. She received her B.S. degree in Health Administration from the University of Alabama, a decision she says left a definable impact on her family.
“Sacrifices were made so that I could go back to school full-time and the jobs that followed were miles away from the home base. But the sacrifices were evidence to our sons of the value of and appropriate timing of one’s college education,” Biddle shared with Yellowhammer News.
Following graduation from graduate school and completion of the required residency, Biddle’s career skyrocketed, as she was named the vice-president of operations at Medical Center East in 1992 and later progressed to chief operating officer of St. Vincent’s Healthcare System in 2005.
In 2011, Biddle attempted to retire by working from home for Ascension – St. Vincent’s Health System’s parent. During that time, she helped create the National Ascension Leadership Academy, a highlight of her career as she had always wanted to be a teacher.
“This period was just so much fun! I enjoyed interacting with national thought leaders on healthcare reform to shape the curriculum of the Academy and interacting with young executives from across the nation as they completed that course of study,” Biddle shared.
In 2014, she received an unexpected phone call from Ascension asking if she would return to St. Vincent’s in the CEO position, due to an unanticipated vacancy. She served as CEO for three years working to stabilize the leadership team and recruit a new leader. After orienting the new CEO, Biddle went to the 13-hospital system in Austin, TX, where she provided interim leadership during a period of transition and change.
As an advocate for others, Biddle is familiar with battling limitations in the corporate world. She promises not to give up her fight to ensure a brighter tomorrow for career women in our state and beyond.
“Being an encourager and supporter of women is extremely important to me, and I feel I have the responsibility to continue in the role of advocate. I survived in a male-dominated field and did see some growing acceptance of women and the gifts they bring to leadership. But, there is still much to do to bring about equality both personally and professionally, and it is my responsibility to make that happen,” Biddle shared.
Mrs. Biddle has been married to her high school classmate, Tommy Biddle, for 53 years. They share two sons and are overjoyed with their expanding family. It is one of her greatest joys to watch her four grandchildren grow up. Aside from spending time with her family, Biddle enjoys gardening – calling it her passion – especially in the beautiful Spring weather.
Biddle spends a great deal of time using her talents to inspire others. The American Heart Association, the March of Dimes, American Cancer Society and the Komen Foundation are a few of the organizations very dear to her heart.
“The gift of being able to impact the lives of others in a positive way is, in my opinion, is the most meaningful of all contributions,” she told Yellowhammer News.
She loves volunteering at her church by teaching Sunday School, chairing the Administrative Council and leading the Discipleship Team. She also sings on the church’s music team and in Snead State Junior College’s Community Choir. She serves on the District Operations Team for the Mountain-Lakes District of the United Methodist Church and was a member of the inaugural class of Momentum, a women’s leadership group that continues to promote growth in leadership of the women across the state.
When reflecting on what she wishes to leave as a legacy for future generations, Biddle shared the following inspirational words: “Go for it! Many of the limitations I experienced were self-imposed and resulted, to a large degree, from my lack of self-confidence. My advice would be to stay open to possibilities. Do not assume that you ‘can’t do something.’ One can do more than ever imagined if only willing to step through the door of possibility. Be bold and prepare. Become your very best self and the world will come to you!”
Yellowhammer News is proud to name Neeysa Biddle a 2019 Woman of Impact.
The 2nd Annual Women of Impact Awards will celebrate the honorees on April 29, 2019, in Birmingham. Event details can be found here.