Long-standing CEO retires after 40 years at Allendale County Hospital

Ken Hiatt has spent the bulk of his career as CEO of Allendale County Hospital (ACH). In January 2015, his 40-year stint came to an end. 

Hiatt was born in Bamberg, S.C., and obtained a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of South Carolina in 1968. He went on to complete his graduate studies in public administration at the University of Oklahoma in 1972 and returned to USC to complete the Executive Graduate Program in Healthcare Financial Management in 1978. 

He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1968 until 1975 as a medical service corps officer and was appointed administrator of ACH and John Edward Harter Nursing Center in February 1975. He served as the chief administrative and executive officer of the 25-bed critical access hospital and 44-bed long-term care facility.

During his time at ACH, Hiatt served on various boards and committees including the Board of Directors of the Salkehatchie Healthy Communities Collaborative, the Low Country Health Care Network, the Low Country Health Care System, the Palmetto Care Connections, and the Lowcountry Area Health Education Consortium. 

Hiatt was also very active with small and rural hospitals and continuously found ways to serve the Allendale community and provide care to a low-income population while maintaining ACH’s independent status.

“Ken has proven himself to be a very able health care leader during some very turbulent times in an economically deprived area,” said Tommy Cockrell, president and CEO of SCHA Solutions. “The entire community of Allendale has benefitted greatly from Ken’s experience, ability and commitment to serving the health needs of the residents.”

Hiatt’s successor is Lari Gooding who is originally from neighboring Hampton County, but has resided in Allendale County for the past 18 years.