Marecki looks back on long career at Bayhealth

DOVER — After a tenure of more than 30 years, Pam Marecki — Bayhealth’s assistant vice president of marketing and communications — retired this month.

In the position, she was responsible for the hospital system’s advertising and corporate communications, as well as its social media presence and media relations.

“I was hired as a public relations specialist in December 1989 at Kent General,” Ms. Marecki said of the hospital where she was born,

She came there after spending nine years as the marketing director at Dover Federal Credit Union. Before that, she worked in the newsroom at a local radio station.

When Ms. Marecki first started at Kent General, which would eventually become the Kent Campus of the Bayhealth system, her field was very different.

As Bayhealth assistant vice president of marketing and communications, Pam Marecki was responsible for the hospital system’s advertising and corporate communications, as well as its social media presence and media relations. (Submitted photo)

“When I arrived at Kent General, hospitals generally did not advertise services but instead communicated to our medical staff and employees through newsletters and to the public through press releases and community-focused events, such as health fairs,” she said.

“We later began advertising to announce services, technology, affiliations and medical staff as other organizations did, through print, radio, billboard and television advertising — later expanding to social media,” Ms. Marecki said.

She was there for the sector’s shift into the digital world.

“I remember learning to write HTML language for the first website we launched,” she said.

Ms. Marecki is also a founding member of sorts of the Bayhealth system. She cited the merger of Kent General and Milford Memorial into Bayhealth in 1997 as a key milestone in her professional life.

In 2006, she was promoted to the assistant vice president of marketing and communications position.

Between 2015 and 2019, Ms. Marecki helped coordinate “announcement, construction and opening of the new Bayhealth Hospital, Sussex Campus” in Milford.

The 2019 sale of Milford Memorial Hospital to Nationwide Healthcare services, the accreditation and expansion of Bayhealth’s medical education programs and the opening of the Nemours facility on the Sussex Campus were other memories that loom large as Ms. Marecki looks back on her career.

In the final months of her tenure, she helped direct Bayhealth’s communications through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Over the course of her career, Ms. Marecki made a big impact on the local community.

“It’s hard to go anywhere in the community without running into someone who knows Pam,” said Danielle Pro-Hudson, a media center coordinator at Bayhealth. “She touched a lot of lives in her career.”

Pam Marecki participated in the 2018 Dancing with the Delaware Stars competition with Ryan Batchelor at the Rollins Center at Dover Downs.. (Delaware State News/Marc Clery)

Through her compassion and strong work ethic, Ms. Marecki has accomplished a lot for Bayhealth, Ms. Pro-Hudson said.

“The marketing communications team is my greatest accomplishment,” Ms. Marecki said. “The team includes talented experts in the field of marketing, internal and external communications, media relations, web and digital media, photography and videography.”

She hopes the team “will continue to grow professionally. My focus was on guiding them through challenges, providing support, mentoring and always treating them with respect and kindness.”

Ms. Pro-Hudson, a member of Ms. Marecki’s squad, said she “encouraged us to work together as a team, while also giving us the chance to grow professionally. We were always teaching and learning from each other because of Pam’s leadership.”

Ms. Marecki also saw Bayhealth improve its offerings to the community through medical technologies and an expanded staff.

“I was fortunate to be part of a strong executive team focused on providing safe, high-quality care and improving access to care by bringing more medical experts to the community,” she said.

“One example is the internal medicine and family medicine residency programs that will improve access to important medical care for the community when it begins next year,” Ms. Marecki said.

“Much has changed at Bayhealth to improve quality (and) safety and to deliver the best care for our community,” she said.

Ms. Marecki’s last day at work was Dec. 4.

“I enjoyed a socially distanced breakfast with my team,” she said, “and a few weeks earlier, I had lunch with members of the executive team. Both were wonderful get-togethers but different than Bayhealth’s usual farewells, due to COVID.”

A COVID-friendly celebration was given for Pam Marecki at Bayhealth earlier this month. (Submitted photo)

Ms. Marecki’s absence has certainly been noticed at Bayhealth.

“Pam’s dedication, knowledge and expertise will be missed,” Ms. Pro-Hudson said. “Pam is one of Bayhealth’s biggest cheerleaders. We’ll miss her positive energy. For more than 30 years, Pam infused hope and optimism in all our work.

“She had so much pride in making sure our community was cared for and making sure our community had hope when they needed it most.”

With her newfound downtime, Ms. Marecki said she plans to do plenty of gardening, biking and walking, in addition to spending more time with her husband of 41 years, her daughter and her first grandchild.

“I am grateful for the relationships and collaboration with the community and the friendships I made during my career,” she said. “I gave my absolute best to build a strong department to support Bayhealth’s needs and consider that my legacy.”

Ms. Marecki said her replacement will be announced in the coming weeks.

Staff writer Noah Zucker can be reached at nzucker@newszap.com.

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