Quest CEO Rusckowski to step down after a decade, following record-setting 2021

Quest Diagnostics’ longtime CEO Stephen Rusckowski seems to be taking the old adage to “quit while you’re ahead” very seriously.



On Thursday, the same day that it published a 2021 earnings report illustrating what was easily its strongest year yet, the lab testing giant announced that Rusckowski will step down from his place at the helm at the end of October.



His tenure will end a decade after it began in May 2012, though he’ll stay on through March 2023 as executive chairman of Quest’s board of directors. He’ll be succeeded as president and CEO by James Davis, currently the executive vice president of the company’s general diagnostics business.



“As I approached a decade in service as CEO, the board and I determined that now is the right time to begin to turn the helm over to a new leader,” Rusckowski said in a statement. “Jim Davis is extremely well qualified to be CEO, having managed a large part of the company in his role as executive vice president. He has deep knowledge of Quest, the healthcare industry and the corporate world, gained through more than 35 years of business experience.”



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In his time as chief executive, Rusckowski led Quest from a stagnant state to one of exponential growth. He did so by prioritizing the company’s advanced diagnostics and consumer testing segments and its relationships with insurers and healthcare providers, and by building out Quest’s reach through a total of 41 acquisitions.



These efforts culminated in 2021 with the company’s strongest financial performance to date. It registered total revenues of $10.8 billion, representing not only a 14.3% increase from 2020, but an almost 50% improvement over the $7.4 billion Quest posted in 2012, his first year in office.



Rusckowski’s final full year as CEO will likely stay in the record books for quite some time. The company is already tempering its expectations for 2022, forecasting a solid drop in revenue to somewhere between $9 billion and $9.5 billion. That slip will be largely attributed to falling demand for COVID-19 testing, with annual revenues for those products expected to clock in between $700 million and $1 billion—up to 75% lower than the $2.77 billion Quest earned from COVID testing last year.



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When Davis takes over the top spot, he’ll already have put in almost a decade of his own at Quest. He joined in 2013, following several years of leadership roles in GE’s diagnostic imaging and MRI businesses and a short stint as CEO of devicemaker Insightec.



As VP of general diagnostics at Quest, he oversees a segment of the company worth more than 80% of its annual revenue. He’s also in charge of managing Quest’s operations, ranging from sales and marketing to logistics to patient and customer services.



“I am deeply honored to have the opportunity to succeed Steve and lead Quest into the next phase of growth and build on our vision of empowering better health with diagnostic insights,” Davis said. “Our company has never been more integral to patients and the healthcare system, as we have seen during the pandemic.”



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In addition to outlining its CEO transition plan, Quest said Thursday that its chief financial officer, Mark Guinan, has also decided to retire this year. Guinan, currently in his ninth year as CFO, will stay on until his successor has been selected.



“With the company well-positioned for continued success after the pandemic, now it’s time for me to step back and retire,” he said in a statement. “I’m looking forward to participating in the process to identify my successor, who can support Steve and Jim in Quest’s next phase of growth.”