CEO/ Clinical CHO
Dr. Gary M. Wiltz a Board Certified Internist has been employed with TAC for over 30 years serving as Medical Director from 1982 to 2002. In 2003, he was named CEO of the organization and serves in this capacity to date. He is a graduate of Tulane Medical School. During his tenure with TAB, he has served on many local, state, and national healthcare committees, including two Governor’s Healthcare Reform projects, LPCA Clinical Director, Secretary, Treasurer, and most recently the Chair -Elect of The National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC).
Dr. Gary M. Wiltz is the Chief Executive Officer of Teche Action Clinics, a network of thirteen Federally Qualified Community Health Centers located in six parishes in southwest Louisiana, with the main site in Franklin. Prior to his appointment as CEO in May 2003, Dr. Wiltz held the position of Medical Director since his arrival at Teche Action Clinic in 1982, as part of an obligated service to the National Health Service Corp (NHSC). Dr. Wiltz is a native New Orleanean, and received his medical school education at Tulane University School of Medicine. He is a Board Certified Internist. His three-year NHSC commitment has turned into a lifetime of service to the people that he serves in Franklin and to the State of Louisiana. When Dr. Wiltz arrived at Teche Action Clinic in 1982 he inherited a clinic in a very tenuous position that had been without a doctor for 6 month and was in serious risk of being defunded and closed. With a staff of 8 and an operating budget of $100,000.00 the seasonal migrant sugar cane workers that the clinic was funded to take care of faced the possibility that without Teche being able to be turned around these patients would be forced to seek care through the Charity Hospital system some 50 and 100 miles away.
As he started his career at Teche Action Clinic, Dr. Wiltz initially intended to fulfill his 3 year obligation to the NHSC and return to his hometown of New Orleans and take a fellowship in the subspecialty of Nephrology at Tulane Medical School. However, as he related the story a transformation occurred when he realized that this clinic and this work of serving the underserved was his divine calling. With this affirmation he totally committed himself to Teche and over the course of the next 34 years help to build what has been acknowledged as one of the nation’s premiere FQHC’s. Teche has proudly grown to now serve over 25,000 patients at 13 sites, 1 mobile unit in 7 parishes in Southwest Louisiana employing 200 people within an operating budget of $20 million dollars. His impact on Teche’s success was best described in an article published in the September 2009 issue in the American Journal of Public Health entitled “Care in the Country: A Historical Case Study of Long Term Sustainability of 4 Rural Clinics” written by D.Brad Wright where he states: “Members of the community attribute the continued growth and success of Teche to Gary Wiltz, MD.”
Dr. Wiltz has held many positions of leadership at the local, state and national level including the Chairman of the Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) of Louisiana and President of the Southwest AHEC; Chairman of the Louisiana Primary Care Association; and Board Member and Chairman of the National Advisory Council for the NHSC. He also served on Former Governors Mike Foster and Kathleen Blanco’s Health Care Transition Teams. Dr. Wiltz more recently served as co-chair of newly elected Governor John Bel Edwards Health Care Transition Team.
Teche Action Clinics are frequently referred to as a model for the state and possibly the nation for delivery of health care in a community health center setting.
Dr. Wiltz is immediate past Chair of the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC), an organization that represents over 9,000 clinics serving over 28 million people nationwide.
Among his many honors, Dr. Wiltz was named Medical Director of the Year 1994-95 by the Louisiana Primary Care Association, and in 1996 was selected as one of only ten national recipients of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s prestigious Community Health Leadership Award.
Dr Wiltz also serves as an assistant Clinical Professor in Internal Medicine at both Tulane and Louisiana State University Schools of Medicine. In 2000, he was featured on the Discovery Health Channel in their presentation of “Bayou Medicine.” He has also been a guest on Louisiana Public Square and C-SPAN, featured in USA TODAY and on NPR. Just recently he was a panelist on a Health Care Summit held at the White House, discussing health care reform and the Affordable Health Care Act.