Frances Spreer-Albert (Fran) our Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer, is a 19-year veteran of Albany Med. Her longevity and commitment are no surprise though, as her dream has always been to work in the Albany area and more specifically, work for Albany Med!
We wanted to share Fran’s greatness with the world, so we conducted a Q & A to learn more about her. Let’s dive in…
Q: In 2018, you were quoted as an 18-year veteran. What has kept you at Albany Med for so long?
A: “Our organization is filled with hardworking, devoted employees and we have a beautiful Mission that supports the community. Not only our immediate community, but many far-reaching communities that don't have the types of services we do. It's a dynamic environment. I learn something new every single day. I learn from every other person in the workforce which helps me continue to grow as a professional.”
Q: What initially made you choose Albany Med over continuing your career KPMG?
A: “I really loved my career at KPMG, but one of the things that I knew was that I wanted to stay in Albany. My entire family and many of my friends are still here. I also knew I wanted to specialize in healthcare and during my years at KPMG I was very satisfied, but at one point I said, ‘boy, when and if I ever leave KPMG, it will be to work at Albany Med,’ so when an opportunity surfaced at Albany Med I was very excited to take it. It is my dream job and my dream employer.”
Q: You are on record as "contribut[ing] to the growth and strengthening of Albany Medical Center’s finances and improvement of all major financial ratios." With respect to that, what would you say is your proudest accomplishment?
A: “I think my proudest accomplishment to date has been integrating the financial function into operations throughout Albany Med. After getting my feet under me during the first couple of years I looked for opportunities to integrate the finance team and functions with various other departments, whether they be other support departments or clinical departments. In partnering together, our accomplishments have grown and our goals have aligned. I believe I have contributed to the growth of the collaborative work at Albany Med, and I'm very proud of that.”
Q: What are some of your favorite things about Albany Med (the culture, the people etc?)
A: “The workforce. Everybody at Albany Med loves to work here. There is definitely contagious pride in what we do day in and day out. I love the commitment and the devotion that our workforce displays on a daily basis and feel really lucky to be part of what they do.”
Q: If you were speaking to someone who had not heard of Albany Med and was interested in a career there, what advice/statements would you give them?
A: “So in terms of a statement, I would say a career here is a life-changing choice. It's almost having another family. You become fully committed to the Mission, to the Vision, and the Team.
And from a standpoint of advice I would say, be self-aware. Understand what your skillsets are and the type of value that you bring and look for each and every opportunity where that skillset can help others across the organization. Healthcare is such a team sport and there is a role for you in many, many different types of projects.”
Q: What is the best career advice you have ever received?
A: “I've received a lot of great career advice from a lot of incredible professionals, but the best advice came from my father who always encouraged me to follow my heart, follow my instincts and to believe in myself.”
Q: What has been your favorite memory of working at Albany Med (so far)?
A: “Oh, that is way too hard. There are so many good ones! To start, the completion of the B Building is definitely a great memory. The onboarding of new hires, the people that I've recruited over time. Some of the employee gatherings and celebrations that we have had as a team. The Albany Med Cares events when people share their stories and experiences of Albany Med. Rounding is also one of my favorite activities.”
Q: Are you from the area or did you relocate to join?
A: “I graduated from Voorheesville High School and from U Albany. I worked for KPMG out of the Albany Office. I am all the way local.”
Q: What about the area interests you most?
A: “Our community has a culture that is built on old school values centered on family, friends, kindness, and loyalty. Also, I like the geographic location in the sense that it's a great place to live with access to a lot of nice places to day trip and vacation.
My family loves going to Lake George, Saratoga, Cooperstown, and New York City We like to ski, swim, and be outdoors.”
Q: Where would we find you if you weren't working?
A: “SPAC during the summer would be a good bet. Maybe on the deck reading or outdoors walking or hiking. Perhaps at a play or a concert.”
When we asked Fran if she had anything else to add, she simply said, “Albany Med definitely attracts a certain type of workforce that's motivated by all the right things – helping others, doing good and contributing to the community which really makes it a wonderful place to work.” Honestly, we couldn’t agree more and acknowledge that much of the culture is due to remarkable people like her.
Thank you, Fran, for all the ways you contribute to this amazing institution.