Dick Stenson will be replaced by Manny Berman Nov. 15

Tuality Healthcare is about to experience a major changing of the guard.

Dick Stenson, president and chief executive officer of the Hillsboro-based healthcare company for the past 21 years, has announced he’ll retire soon and hand off his responsibilities to longtime administrator and chief operating officer Manuel “Manny” Berman.

Stenson, who became Tuality’s CEO in 1992, plans to remain as a special advisor to the board through February 2014 and retire that same month.

During his tenure, Stenson, a Forest Grove resident, presided over the development of the Hillsboro Health & Education District, Tuality’s Breast Health Center and the Tuality/OHSU Cancer Center.

Berman will immediately assume leadership of Tuality’s strategic planning process, which includes a possible expansion of Tuality Forest Grove Hospital on Maple Street.

In 2012, Tuality entered into affiliation discussions with Providence Health & Services but balked at any talk of a sale, largely because Stenson wanted to maintain Tuality’s independent-hospital status in western Washington County.

With Kaiser Permanente opening the new 126-bed Westside Medical Center in Hillsboro in August, however, it’s clear the heat is on. Kaiser has attracted some of Tuality’s 1,525 employees, and its emergency room competes with the one on Tuality’s Hillsboro campus.

According to the online nonprofit compensation report, Stenson earned a total of $405,293 in salary, deferred compensation and non-taxable benefits between Oct. 1, 2010 and Sept. 30, 2011, while Berman was paid $230,844.

The Lund Report, an Oregon healthcare system watchdog, reported April 5 that in 2011, Tuality Community Hospital in Hillsboro had a net loss of $5.8 million, with net patient revenue down 1.4 percent from a year earlier.

Spokesman Gerry Ewing said Monday that Tuality Healthcare actually had a profit of roughly $4.5 million for fiscal year 2011. But that same year, it changed the way it funds its pension plan for employees.

“That change cost the company about $10 million,” Ewing said. “When you apply that $10 million to the profit of $4.5 million, it ends up being a loss of around $5.5 [million]. So, the bottom line is the documents we file with the state show a loss of around $5.5 million. In actuality, the company made money in 2011.”