Jason Demke Joins Mercy Hospital Fort Smith as Chief Operating Officer

March 29, 2024

Jason Demke recently joined Mercy Hospital Fort Smith as its new chief operating officer.

Demke replaces Ryan Geib, who is now president of Mercy Southeast Communities in Missouri. Demke began his new position with Mercy on March 18, bringing a background in health care that includes more than a decade of leadership experience. Most recently, he served as COO for West Valley Medical Center in Caldwell, Idaho, and previously was vice president of operations at Johnston-Willis Hospital in Richmond, Virginia.

Demke will oversee the ongoing expansion of the emergency department and intensive care unit at Mercy Hospital Fort Smith, among other projects. Construction began on the ER/ICU expansion in February 2022, and it has an expected completion date of April 2025.

Mercy doctor's coat Jason Demke

“You can feel there’s a lot of community momentum in the River Valley, which creates excitement and opportunities,” he said. “It also creates new challenges, but Mercy Fort Smith is invested in taking on those challenges by expanding access to its nationally recognized care within our communities. I knew immediately that this is where I wanted to continue to grow my career and be a part of something special.”

Ryan Gehrig, president of Mercy Arkansas Communities, said Demke’s leadership experience makes him a great fit for his new role in Fort Smith.

“Jason will be joining Mercy during a period of great growth and expansion in the River Valley. We are confident his experience and expertise will ensure we continue to provide excellent care for our patients,” Gehrig said.  

Demke is looking forward to being part of the Fort Smith team and was impressed by how co-workers connected their work to purpose, with values in alignment with his own.

“This was a great opportunity for me to join a mission-centric, faith-based organization with a nearly 200-year history,” Demke said. “My goal is to learn from our past, build upon the present and enable our future to continue what the Sisters of Mercy started — bringing to life the healing ministry of Jesus through compassionate care and exceptional service.”

Joining Demke in his relocation to Fort Smith are wife Amy and their three children, Lucy, Max and Andie. As a family, they enjoy spending time participating in community activities and playing various sports.