Broward Health CEO paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in hush money to fired execs

By Dan Christensen and Buddy Nevins, 

Broward Health Acting President/CEO Kevin Fusco, left, with Interim Chief Financial Officer Arthur Wallace III at a recent board meeting.

Broward Health Acting President/CEO Kevin Fusco, left, with Interim Chief Financial Officer Arthur Wallace III at a recent board meeting.

Acting Broward Health President/CEO Kevin Fusco apparently exceeded his spending authority last month when he signed a deal to pay more than $400,000 in hush money to a district executive who was fired after publicly criticizing a proposed $71.4 million, no-bid advertising contract.

The same day, Fusco signed a second deal to pay the fired chief executive of the district’s Fort Lauderdale flagship, Broward Health Medical Center, $537,000 to go away quietly.

The taxpayer-supported public hospital system’s chief executive is authorized to spend $250,000 on his signature alone; anything above that amount requires the approval of Broward Health’s governing board.

Approval for the costly agreements with ex-Broward Health Chief Financial Officer Robert K. Martin and medical center Chief Executive Officer Calvin Glidewell, however, was neither requested by Fusco nor granted by the board, according to minutes and coverage of board meetings.

Fusco did not respond to requests for comment made over several days.

Fusco inked 10-page separation agreements with Martin and Glidewell on Feb. 5, nine days after being named acting president/CEO in the aftermath of the Jan. 23 suicide of Broward Health boss Dr. Nabil El Sanadi. The contracts bear El Sanadi’s name, but his name was crossed out by Fusco when he signed them following El Sanadi’s death.

Martin’s agreement says he was “terminated” Jan. 7, when El Sanadi was in charge. El Sanadi and a majority of the board supported the proposed contract with Fort Lauderdale’s Zimmerman Advertising.

Ex-Broward Health Medical Center Chief Executive Calvin Glidewell, left, and former Broward Health CFO Robert K. Martin

Ex-Broward Health Medical Center Chief Executive Calvin Glidewell, left, and former Broward Health CFO Robert K. Martin

Under the contract, Broward Health will pay Martin his regular salary of $407,930, or about $196 per hour, through Jan. 7, 2017. Martin also got a lump sum payment of more than $17,000 for approximately 87 hours of accrued personal leave, plus a job-hunting service paid for by Broward Health.

In exchange for the money “to which Martin would not otherwise be entitled,” the agreement required Martin to release Broward Health from any legal claims he might have. He also agreed not to “disparage or adversely affect…or work to the detriment of Broward Health.”

The agreement broadly defines Broward Health to include not just the North Broward Hospital District, its legal name, and all related entities, but “current and former commissioners, directors, officers, employees, successors in interest, attorneys, representatives and agents.”

“Martin hereby represents that he has no knowledge of wrongdoing on the part of Broward Health or conduct that might adversely affect Broward Health or any issue of potential liability to Broward Health,” the agreement says.


“Any breaches by Martin will therefore cause Broward Health to immediately cease further payment to him.”

Martin declined to comment.

Glidewell was fired the day after Martin. The district has not publicly discussed why Glidewell was let go.

Glidewell’s deal specifies he’d continue to be paid his regular salary of $445,432, or $214 per hour, through Jan. 8, 2017. He’d also get a lump sum payment of $92,313 for 431 hours of accrued personal leave time, plus up to $10,000 in job search assistance.

To get the money, Glidewell signed the same gag terms as Martin. Any breaches by Glidewell would cause Broward Health to shut off further payments.

Glidewell did not respond to a phone message seeking comment before deadline.

The Broward Health public health system was subsidized last year by about $140 million in property tax revenues. Nevertheless, administrators have repeatedly inserted so-called “non-disparagement clauses” into separation agreements with its executives. The result has been not only a lack of transparency but, in the cases of Martin and Glidewell, a lack of accountability.

Former Broward Health procurement director Brian Bravo, fired in December amid an FBI corruption investigation, got a similar separation agreement on Jan. 7 in which the district agreed to pay his $159,000 salary through next June 14. Bravo also was given a $17,000 lump sum payment for accrued personal leave.

El Sanadi signed the deal on Jan. 7. It included a non-disparagement clause containing the same language as Broward Health’s agreement with Martin and Glidewell.

Wayne Black, a Miami private investigator hired last year by El Sanadi to look into alleged corruption at Broward Health, told commissioners in a January e-mail that Bravo “was bragging about getting $75,000” from the district “to pay his criminal defense attorney.”

Fusco isn’t the first Broward Health president/CEO to apparently exceed his signing authority. As reported Monday, El Sanadi signed an initial, $2.1 million no-bid annual contract with Zimmerman Advertising on May 5.

Like Fusco, El Sanadi’s authority to sign contracts was limited to $250,000. A review of the minutes of every public Broward Health board meeting in 2015 revealed no indication that Zimmerman’s initial contract was every brought to the board for its consideration.

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Latest comments

  • I’m seeing red the more I read regarding the above.

  • The corruption in what is supposed to be a healing and service industry is unbelievable. $71.4 million to an ad agency? What are they advertising? Don’t people seek them out, not only to work, but also to repair sick bodies?

    And these payouts are sickening. That money should be called back to build more local food banks and shelters.

  • I am not surprised. When government entities have meetings out of sunshine, exceeding their legal authority or budget seems to follow.

  • Kudos and many thanks to Florida Bulldog!

  • I don’t believe that board members were kept in the dark about these hush payments. I think that privately, they all knew. The only ones who were really kept in the dark is the public. Thanks Florida Bulldog!!

  • How could anybody possibly a mass over 400 hours of vacation time did mr. Glidewell work every Christmas 4th of July Memorial Day Labor Day. He never took a vacation. I think somebody should look at his time records and if he was not there and got paid anyway and not use vacation then he should pay that back what a greedy pig

  • I think this is just the beginning of what Dan and Buddy are going to uncover. Great work!

  • how many employees will lose their job to pay the likes of these hacks. No one in HR knew that Mr. Fusco could not sign this paperwork. Was HR there when these Men were terminated. Whose idea was it to give them severance packages if you’re being fired you should just get fired. If these were my HR people in the company that I ran I would fire them all no questions asked. PS no severance either

  • Vacation time is easily accrued if you’re a long time employee. Who wants to take off to have a life when you actually enjoy going to work? It “is” a life.
    Moral is slipping and patients are losing confidence. So sad….the nurses out in the trenches are working twice as hard.
    So, does this mean we shouldn’t be allowed to have our earned vacation hours?
    Will vested employees lose pension funds next?
    Upper level management is obviously paid way too much in comparison to the employees doing hands on care!

  • doesn’t the human resources office, legal and / or finance department review and approve these agreements? why does the public still pay for a hospital district that was created before Medicare, Medicaid and Obamacare? is the hospital district board ever going to come clean with the public?

    i have so many questions. i wish someone besides the bloggers would provide an answer.

  • The Florida Bulldog is a independent, professional news organization that publishes online only due to the high cost of newsprint. We are a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) organization and rely on tax deductible contributions from our readers. Our reporters and editors are the most experienced in town. We have more questions, too, and we’ll keeping digging for answers.

  • You’re not even warm yet… These deals m- the illegal contracts all approved by HR Wong and the same incompetent attorney Caputi and the $10M DC attorney who was paid to go along with it all — once they knew then GC Mr. Goren (who himself knew nothing about healthcare and never hired anyone that did) made sure the incompetent attorneys kept getting raises and bonuses – ask why would they promote a Chief Compliance officer Lewis who looked the other way and never uncovered a single problem, finally bringing in her good friends, Mila and Lynn, to save her job but couldn’t – and rather than fire her, she was allowed to keep her job (hush money) while a knew compliance officer was brought in over her!

  • This is corruption at the highest levels and a big cover-up. Keep up the GREAT work and thank you for reporting on this.

  • Great job Dan and team. You are doing the employees who have suffered greatly under a regime of pressure to look the other way, stifle their real opinions on surveys and forced to lie in many cases about the corruption they see every day. These people finally have format to speak the truth.
    Keep up the good work, fight the good fight. Uncover these executives show them as the greedy people they are.
    PS. Look at the management bonus going as far back as ten years. A lot of manipulating the numbers to make bonus in years when they would not have been paid out. Millions of dollars paid to executive staff.

  • Hush Money?? Unfortunately these guys only wanted to do right for BH. It was the corruption of NES and LB that forced Bob and Calvin out of their jobs. With their names connected to Broward Health, future Chief positions will be very difficult to find. Good for you Bob and Calvin. Take the money graciously all the way to the bank!!

  • I wish I could agree about Bob and Calvin but let’s face it; they remained emoted as officers within BH despite knowledge of fraud and monetary mismanagement. They received bonuses and were with BH when physicians salaries exceeded fair market value, and when employed physicians received a lower percentage of PPUC fees than they should have for referring indigent patients. I’m sure the latter impacted the bottom line, thus went into these charming fellow’s pockets as bonus dollars instead of where it belonged, caring for the poor. The entire board, and all of the executives have filth on their hands. No way around that one. Every hospital and corporate c-suiter, and every board member knew EXACTLY what the game was, and everyone of them benefited financially gratis taxes. Jail is where each and everyone of them belong.

  • I also feel it necessary to expose the balogna email sent by DiPietro to employees at Broward Health, urging them to contact the inspector general if they suspected fraud (see sun sentinel article on line). I theorize Rick Scott, through his appointed inspector general is NOT, I repeat is NOT looking for fraudulent contracts. He is only looking for anything that implicates himself, and possibly a friend, and is having the inspector general clean it up so he he can’t be legally implicated. So when DiPietro, his mini me, directs employees to to the IG to report fraud he is really directing to Rick Scott and we all know his intentions. Hence, employee complaints will be buried. If employees have evidence of fraud, they should contact the department of justice, office of the inspector general. In fact, it is required of them to do so under their corporate integrity agreement since Broward Health has once again demonstrated its intent to not comply, as evidenced by their interfering with the Fl IG interviews/investigation. Escalate the issues folks

  • Qui tam. I could not agree with you more. The inspector general investigation is a sham. If you are an do not walk to the office of inspector general as you are required to do. It was in all that on line training you had to take.
    If you have enough dirt, file a whistle blower claim like Dr. Riley did. Get some cash for what you know, don’t give it to the will get buried. Hold out for the Feds. These people need to be taken out of their offices in handcuffs.

    Make it count people. The execs and the board have been cashing in for years. It’s your turn…….GO TO THE FEDS!!!!!!!!!

  • Employees complaints being buried. Yep.


    WHAT ABOUT senior vice presidents that were fired in marketing, (formerly one of Nask”s angels), the sr vp of strategic marketing, who had 2 babies while employed foe 3 years and any other managers. …this is the tip of the iceberg. ..come on FBI and Sun Sentinel.. think about the sun sentinel and all the full page adds, but never a negative article Ferron the editorial board. ..and we wondered why. …now it is all so clear.

  • P.S. someone needs to post the emails and phone numbers of the places to Report

  • Pacer provides public access to the U.S. Court system case documents. It is available to all by simply signing up and providing your credit card info. The cost of accessing and printing documents is nominal. I highly recommend anyone interested in reading the Federal DOJ/OIG case, Michael Reily v NBHD/BH do so. You will only need the final ruling. It is a disturbing yet fascinating case that will help all to better understand the types of crimes committed and by whom. It will serve to help employees understand more fully what has occurred, and why it is their duty to blow the whistle. The attorney for Dr. Reilly is named. He’d be a confidential resource to you all. You will not be exposed until the case settled unless you tell a sole. You must keep quiet, have documented evidence, and a case worth the % you will get if/when your case wins as you will be blacklisted most likely from working in your profession, especially a healthcare provider, as employers will be afraid you may do it to them. Sad, but true. But if you have followed policy, or have evidence that you may be fired for following policy like B Martin, then contact that attorney so he can help you. Don’t let this go. The ground is shaking. Timing could not be better!

  • Qui tam. Judging by your mom biker you are obviously in the legal profession.
    Keep sending tips and places for us to go.
    Also, it is costly for the Florida bulldog to get access to documents they request. I am sure there are copying fees for the request. Hit the donate button n the side of the site. You can donate anomously, I did and urge you to do so too. This has been a great site for employees to express their opinions without retribution.
    It’s the right thing to give a few dollars.

  • Sorry qui tam…meant moniker

  • Can someone please post the Minutes from the December 2015 Board of Commissioners meeting of NBHD? Thank you.

  • Thanks for your suggestion, Annonymous!

  • How many employees have been laid off, fired, terminated or RIF’d since NES took over as CEO? Find out that information, because if they were management level, they were also given severance packages IF they signed this document (the same one signed by Glidewell and Martin). If they did not sign, they could still get a smaller amount of severance, could return to work at BH and were not held to the standard of not disparaging BH. If the “terminations” were labeled as a RIF (reduction in force), look at those positions that were quickly refilled with a different title but the person does the same job. How legal is that? Is it ethical? Was it just to put hand selected employees in those roles? How does HR get by with this? Who orchestrated the many firings and why? There’s much more to this story.

  • The OIG quit before they even got to the good stuff! The employment contracts were THE LEAST of the problem – they never picked up the rug to see how much had been swept underneath!!!

  • I am not an executive or manager so I don’t get the hush type severance package, too bad for BH because, unless I get something worth my while when I am forced out, I am going to sing like a canary and I have the information to sing a sweet song.

  • Dan. Please obtain a copy of Mr. Fusco’s and Ms. Barrett’s employment contracts, and please expose their separation packages and terms. These ought to be juicy, and must explain their reckless regard and commitment to Rick Scott’s higher plan. Anyone who thinks they don’t know what they are doing is mistaken. Ms. Barrett knows the Sunshine Law like the back of her hand. So the question is why she has taken many of the actions that she has, and it must assuredly lead back to the governor and his intent to cover his butt, using the in-house attorney and the external Fl inspector general to do all of his dastardly deeds. Keep watching all of the moles run; the Rick Scott appointed board of commissioners. They, like Ms. Barrett, do not want to take the fall, but neither does the governor, or even former senator Lemieux, and lord forbid Zimmerman whose personal political aspirations have yet to have been exposed. So this is when the chess board comes to life; who will be the compromised pawns and/or queens, and who will claim checkmate!

  • With so many moving parts, it remains difficult to diagnose exactly what s happening at the North Broward Hospital District, which oversees the public hospital system known as Broward Health.

  • As a resident and consumer of healthcare in Broward County, I am troubled by the silence that all of a sudden exists about BH. As one of the most politically corrupt health systems in the country, I depend upon great investigative journalism to relentlessly pursue and expose the real story, no matter how far reaching. Please keep us informed. Please don’t let BH, the judicial system, and politicians sweep this under the rug.

  • Hang in there Awkward Moment.Today’s BOC meeting at BH included termination of general council and acting CEO. Two down, and hopefully many more to go!

  • You’re saying fusco is already out?

  • Fusco returned to his cushy overpaid position as COO. Barrett survived and is on a 1 month review because Rick Scott’s dedicated board members, most likely at his request, saved her. Imagine that.

  • Welcome to the Broward Wealth. Where our mission is to provide as the least amount of patient care for the most amount of money. At our employees expense. And where the only thing important to management is our bonus.

  • Lynn B. is clearly in over her head and doesn’t have the experience (or the people skills) to handle this job — but remember she inherited most of the mess. The real culprit is the last General Counsel, Goren and his law firm, who were literally handed the list of these problems when he arrived in 2009 but instead of solving the problems, he and his law firm charged BH by the hour millions in attorney’s fees to draft these doctor’s contracts that Caputi, Francis I, Donna Lewis and million $$ DC attorney Bauman, all approved and signed off on!

  • Corrupt governor places a corrupt board of commissioners. Anyone surprised?


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