Release Date: October 8, 2014
BUFFALO, N.Y. – Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has appointed Michael W. Cropp, MD, MBA, president and CEO of Independent Health, to the University at Buffalo Council. His term will run through June 2020.
He succeeds Gerald Lippes, who served from 1997 until Cropp’s appointment on Aug. 8.
The UB Council serves as the primary oversight and advisory body to the university, its president and senior officers. Established in accordance with New York State Education Law, the council consists of 10 members, nine who are appointed by the governor, and one student member elected annually by the university's students.
Cropp, a graduate of UB’s Executive MBA program, is a board-certified family physician. With more than 25 years of experience practicing medicine and working as a physician leader, he has a long and distinguished career in public health service. He was an associate medical director and family physician for three managed care organizations, and also served as medical director for the Millard Fillmore Health System.
“Dr. Cropp has been a dedicated and engaged volunteer at UB, serving on the UB Foundation board and the deans' advisory councils in both the School of Management and the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, and is also an active volunteer within the local community,” said Jeremy M. Jacobs, chairman of the UB Council. “I am confident that he will contribute significantly to the council, especially with his expertise in health care — a topic of timely interest at the university and across our region.”
UB President Satish K. Tripathi said, “Our UB community is very pleased that Dr. Cropp is joining the council.”
“The council plays a vital role in guiding the university’s progress and in fostering our relationships within our region and across the nation,” he said, “and we are very fortunate to have the benefit of Dr. Cropp’s insight, counsel and expertise in this important capacity. His keen understanding of the economic and health care issues of Western New York, and the critical leadership role our university plays in them, will be a great asset to the council and to the university as a whole.”
Among the council’s regular duties are reviewing and advising on all major plans and activities of the university in the areas of academics, student life, finances, buildings and grounds. Council members also serve as advocates and ambassadors for the university in the regional and statewide community. The council plays a key role in the presidential search process.
“I am extremely honored by Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s appointment,” Cropp said. “This is a time of remarkable growth and opportunity for the University at Buffalo and I look forward to working closely with my fellow council members as UB continues to cultivate its strategic strengths and contribute to the vibrancy of our community.”
Cropp joined Independent Health in 1996 as executive vice president and chief medical officer and was appointed president and CEO in 2004. In 2009, Cropp and the rest of the Independent Health executive team were named executive team of the year by HealthLeaders Media magazine.
Under his leadership, Independent Health delivers products and services that improve the health of some 375,000 customers – and has been consistently recognized nationally for excellence in quality, service and innovation.
Cropp has served in leadership roles on the boards of national health care organizations, including as a member of America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) and as chairman of the Alliance of Community Health Plans (ACHP). He has established several community initiatives to improve access, quality and affordability of health care.
Cropp is the founding chairman of the P2 Collaborative of Western New York, one of the original grantees in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Aligning Forces for Quality (AF4Q) grant.
He is also the founding chairman of Western New York Clinical Information Exchange (WNYCIE, doing business as HEALTHeLINK), a consortium of multiple community stakeholders working to provide electronic access to health information across the entire community, and a recent recipient of the federal government’s Beacon Community award.
In 2012 Cropp was invited to a meeting at the White House to discuss his efforts to promote efficiency and quality in the health care delivery system, and in 2010 he served as the keynote speaker at the UB School of Public Health and Health Profession’s commencement ceremony.
He is the founding chairman of GO Bike Buffalo, a nonprofit that works to create healthy, environmentally sustainable, community-friendly transportation options in the City of Buffalo, and board member with the Greater Buffalo Niagara Partnership and the UB Foundation.
He also served on the boards of directors of the Response to Love Center and Olmsted Center for Visually Impaired, on which he served as board chairman for four years. He has received Leadership Buffalo’s Community Impact Award, the Seneca Nation Diabetes Foundation Chairman’s Award, the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of the Finger Lakes & WNY’s Service to Mankind Award and the UB School of Management Alumni Association’s Buffalo Niagara Executive of the Year Award. Cropp served as chair of the UB Scholarship Gala in 2012.
In addition to his UB degree, Cropp received his bachelor’s and medical degrees from Brown University.