In life … and healthcare … it takes a village.
As a numbers person, Lisa Nix is well aware patients are impacted not only at the bedside but also in the boardroom. A transaction advisory specialist with more than a decade experience in healthcare mergers and acquisitions (M&A), Nix has worked across a broad range of healthcare industry sectors as clients look to optimize size and structure to answer new challenges within the industry.
That changeability is what Nix simultaneously finds most intriguing and most challenging about her job. “I love the ever-changing nature and unpredictability of healthcare deal-making and transaction advisory services,” she said. “One phone call could change everything.”
What some would find daunting, Nix sees as an opportunity for a new adventure. It’s a trait she’s been honing for years. In a five-week span in late 1989, Nix graduated from college, got married, and began her career in public accounting. Going to work for Deloitte, Nix spent nearly 15 years in the firm’s audit practice.
It was while working in auditing for client Community Health Systems that her interest in healthcare M&A was sparked. “I had the good fortune to work alongside some of the best healthcare operators and dealmakers on many challenging acquisition due diligence projects in my formative years of becoming a healthcare transaction advisory specialist,” said Nix, who then spent the next decade as a director with Deloitte’s National Life Sciences and Health Care Practice.
Chatting with former colleague and good friend, Greg Eli, who leads LBMC’s healthcare practice, Nix mentioned she would like a more entrepreneurial focus professionally. “He said, ‘What about doing that here?’” Nix recalled. What began as a casual conversation soon led to more serious discussions about how Nix could help lead and grow LBMC’s burgeoning healthcare transaction advisory services practice.
“I value the collaborative approach,” said Nix, who came aboard in June 2014. She added LBMC not only has financial and tax expertise but also excels in other areas including, HIT assessments, healthcare consulting, billing and coding. ‘We’re able to use all those services in the transaction arena.”
Just as the ‘village’ approach helps clients, Nix said she has benefitted from numerous individuals serving as mentors, role models and teachers. “Also, the power of peer mentoring should not be underestimated,” she stated. ““Early in my career through the Nashville Health Care Council’s Leadership Health Care, I met and became friends with Angela Humphreys – a member at Bass, Berry & Sims and prior Women to Watch honoree. Having a peer that understands your practice, business and industry has been an invaluable mentoring relationship.”
Nix added her first … and most influential … mentor is her mother Marilyn. “My mother became a single mother of two girls – ages six and three – at a very young age and was unable to complete college,” Nix explained. “Her influence was consistent and steadfast in emphasizing the importance of a college education, hard work and achieving excellence.”
Another constant is husband Steve, a lean process engineer who works with DCI Donor Services Tissue Bank. “Probably one of my biggest accomplishments in life is a 25-year marriage … especially to a high school sweetheart,” Nix said with a grin. The couple love to golf, paddleboard and fish, and Steve is a certified fly casting instructor. Not long ago, Nix caught two brown trout, each measuring more than two feet long. “I don’t know that I’ve ever seen him more proud,” she laughed of Steve’s reaction.
While Nix cherishes time with family and friends, she also relishes the opportunity to build an M&A legacy at LBMC founded on excellent service delivered by a collaborative team. She knows it will require a village to answer the complex needs of the healthcare industry.
“With an aging population, healthcare coverage expansion, and continued growth of healthcare spending as a percent of GDP, we need real difference makers in all aspects of our healthcare industry who challenge the status quo and bring truly innovative solutions for efficiency, cost containment, patient access and affordability and quality of care to the system,” Nix concluded.