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Riverside Health System CEO William B. “Bill” Downey Named to Business Magazine’s Virginia 500 List

September 15, 2020

Newport News, Va. — Virginia Business magazine named Riverside Health System CEO William B. “Bill” Downey to the Virginia 500 – The 2020 Power List. The inaugural list, featured in a special September issue of the magazine, recognizes the most powerful executives in the state. It spotlights 500 leaders from across the Commonwealth in 20 different categories ranging from agriculture and energy to technology and nonprofits. Downey is recognized on the list in the health care category.

Virginia Business conducted surveys of state business leaders and economic development officials to compile the Virginia 500, focusing on areas such as annual revenue, newsworthiness, community involvement, diversity and number of employees.

Downey joined Riverside Health System in May of 1981 as an Administrative Extern. After completing his Masters in Health Administration at MCV (VCU) he returned to Riverside in May of 1985. After leaving Riverside in 1995 to become President and CEO of Lewis-Gale Medical Center in Salem, Virginia and CEO of Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point in Hudson, Florida, Downey returned to Riverside in 2001 and became President and CEO in 2012.

Since Downey’s appointment as CEO, Riverside completed several major renovations and expansions, including a $90 million expansion of its flagship Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News, a $50 million renovation and expansion of Riverside Walter Reed Hospital in Gloucester and the construction of a replacement hospital on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. Patriots Colony At Williamsburg, a Riverside Health System continuing care retirement community, also finished a $35 million expansion in 2018. Riverside has also seen significant growth in the Riverside Medical Group during the last decade and now has almost 700 providers in its Medical Group.

Downey has been involved in numerous community organizations over the years, including serving as a board member of The Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, Inc., the Hampton Roads Economic Development Authority, The Virginia Chamber of Commerce, The Hampton Roads Business Roundtable, Virginia Business Council, GO Virginia Hampton Roads, Towne Bank-Peninsula and Premier, Inc. Downey is also a past chairman of An Achievable Dream, the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, United Way of the Virginia Peninsula and the Virginia Living Museum. He also served as president of Greater Peninsula Now.

In 2018, Downey was recognized at the 50th annual Peninsula Humanitarian Awards presented by the Peninsula Chapter of Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities (VCIC). The awards honored individuals and organizations promoting respect and understanding among people of diverse racial, ethnic and religious backgrounds in the Peninsula community. Just recently, Downey was recognized by the Hampton Roads Community Action Program with their 2020 Community Builders award which highlights individuals who make a positive impact on the Hampton Roads Region.

Virginia Business has also named Downey among the “50 Most Influential Virginians.”

Visit riversideonline.com to learn more about Downey and Riverside’s leadership team. To see the complete Virginia 500 list, visit virginiabusiness.com.

Published: September 15, 2020