Larry R. Kaiser, president and CEO, Temple University Health System; dean, school of medicine; number of employees: 10,943.

$6.9 million profit on $1 billion in revenue for fiscal year 2012.

Tenure: Since April 2011.

Age: 60.

Daily Web read: Politico.

Book that recently inspired: The Contrarian's Guide to Leadership by Steven B. Sample.

On surgery:

I still see patients, and I still operate. Surgery is great preparation for leadership. Simply putting together a team and taking somebody to the [operating room] requires a fair bit of leadership. But it also requires collaboration. The surgeon used to be captain of the ship; now it's much more of a team.

On management style:

Certainly informed and collaborative. And transparent. I very much like to hire great people, and delegate responsibility to those individuals [with] special expertise. I'm not a micromanager. [I expect] if people are going to work with me, they want to do their job and do it well.

On changing Temple:

Maintaining the status quo was clearly not an option. [With the university and health system boards], we were able to make moves like the acquisition of the Fox Chase Cancer Center. In addition, with the leadership team that I put together, we've been able to attract individuals who previously may not have considered coming to Temple. We looked very closely at areas we needed to build clinically, and have invested in strategic areas.

Innovation at Temple:

Our Center for Bioethics, Urban Health, and Policy now offers a master's degree in urban bioethics that looks at innovative ways of managing health in an underserved population. This is the first year. We've taken what some would see as a disadvantage - being in an urban area - and made it our advantage.

On hiring:

We needed to have some people who could clearly differentiate themselves from others in this region. It's a very competitive health-care environment.

Biggest challenge:

Over 80 percent of patients discharged from Temple facilities are on government payers, either Medicaid or Medicare. We're the largest safety-net hospital in the commonwealth. [To offset losses, we're] recruiting individuals who are attracting patients who have commercial payers. And [being low cost] might put us in a better position than others who have not had to spend as much time thinking about it. As more people are on Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, others are going to face those challenges.

Temple's reputation:

You'd be hard-pressed to go into town without seeing a Temple billboard or hearing one of our spots. It's an exciting place to be. It's a different organization than it was 18 months ago. - Meeri Kim