Retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General Patricia (Patty) D. Horoho is the Chief Executive Officer of Optum Serve, the end-to-end federal business of Optum and UnitedHealth Group. Patty is a values-based servant leader whose life’s calling is to improve the U.S. health care system, focused in the areas of health care delivery and health disparities. Under Patty’s leadership, Optum Serve emerged as a nationally recognized leader for its expertise in the management of COVID-19 testing, vaccinations and treatment; and worked as the operational arm for UnitedHealth Group’s philanthropic support to citizens living in vulnerable communities.
Patty’s distinguished professional career includes 33 years with the U.S. Army, retiring as a Lieutenant General, the 43rd Army Surgeon General and Commander of the U.S. Army Medical Command. She made history being the first woman, first nurse and non-physician to hold these posts. In these roles, Patty led the third largest health care system in the world, a global logistics, research and care network across five continents, with a multibillion-dollar budget and staff of more than 156,000.
An expert in health care transformation, Patty moved the entire Army Medicine organization from a disease model of care to a system for health. She implemented groundbreaking and long-lasting initiatives around behavioral health, while improving health care considerations and force protection measures for Military women.
Patty has been humbled to serve and lead during pivotal moments in Army Medicine and in defense of the nation, including serving as head nurse in the emergency room during the Green Ramp Disaster in 1994; standing up triage at the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001; transforming care at the Walter Reed Health Care System from 2007 to 2008; and serving as the Special Assistant to the Commander, International Security Assistance Force Joint Command, Afghanistan. In March 2021, Patty continued her life of service and joined the Gary Sinise Foundation's board of directors.
As a lifelong advocate for Service members and Veterans, Patty continues to support organizations that serve the needs of our Nation’s heroes and their families. In 2021, Patty introduced the Women of Valor brooch and lapel pin to specifically recognize the contributions of women who were serving or had served. It is Patty’s hope that these special jewelry items will be worn by Military women and in turn will begin conversations to inspire others with stories of their selfless service to our country.
Patty is a native of Fayetteville, North Carolina. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her Master of Science degree as a clinical trauma nurse specialist from the University of Pittsburgh. Additionally, she holds five honorary doctorate degrees from universities throughout the country.
Patty’s military awards and citations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, France’s National Order of the Legion of Honour Chevalier (Knight), Japan’s Defense Cooperation Award Second Class, and the President’s Lifetime Achievement Award.