Gary Murdock came to WVU knowing he wanted to be an engineer.  He chose Industrial Engineering because he liked the business aspect of IE.

When Gary graduated, he went to work for Burlington Industries.  It was a bad time for the apparel industry.  Plants were closing as jobs were moving out of the country.  Gary didn’t like the industry and decided to return to WVU for graduate work.

An opening developed at WVU Hospitals (now WVU Medicine) for a financial analyst.  Gary left graduate school to take the position. It was a decision he never regretted.

At WVUM, Gary’s role continued to grow.  “The leaders at WVUM really appreciated my analytical skills. I was able to give them the numbers they needed to make decisions.” In 4/5 years, Gary was named as a Vice President at WVUM.  He was 37 years old.

Over the years at WVUM, Gary has had a number of different roles.  “I have always tried to match what I like with what WVUM needed. In a sense I’ve created my own jobs because I’ve done things that others weren’t doing.”

As WVUM grew to include 7 hospitals and the academic medical center, Gary saw a need for developing a coordinated approach for governmental and external relations.  This has also involved working on governance issues within an increasingly complex organization, consisting of an annual budget of $1.2 billion and 12,000 employees.

“I’ve made my career telling people what they need to hear even when it may not be something they want to hear.”  That’s a valuable lesson for all Industrial Engineers no matter the type of business they work in.

Gary believes that healthcare is a great career path for IE’s but they need to get a Masters in Healthcare Administration.  “There are three entrance points for IE’s in healthcare: performance improvement, unit management, and financial analysis.  A big challenge for healthcare delivery is using data to identify key interventions.  We need strategies for how to deploy resources for most appropriate care.  That sounds like an IE problem.”


Gary Murdock is the vice president of health policy and governmental affairs for WVU Medicine which includes seven hospitals and the West Virginia University academic medical center. Murdock, who assumed this role in 2014, is responsible for coordination of government and external relations of West Virginia University Health System (WVUHS). He is actively involved in Board development and healthcare policy and has given presentations on various healthcare issues at the local board, state, and international levels.

Prior to his current role, from 2000 to 2014, Murdock served as vice president of marketing, planning and communications for WVU Healthcare. During that time he was responsible for the initial strategic planning process for the combined WVU Hospital’s and the WVU physician corporation and more recently the WVUHS strategic plan.  Murdock held several positions at WVU Hospitals from 1992 to 2000, including financial analyst, director of Health Information Management and vice president for program development.

Murdock graduated from WVU in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering. Prior to working for WVU Hospitals, he worked as an industrial engineer in the textile industry in North Carolina and Virginia, and was a teaching fellow in the WVU School of Engineering.  He resides with his family in Morgantown, WV.

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