Achievements: Shackelford assumed the CEO role in September 2017 after serving as vice president of strategy and outreach since 2010. Before that, he was CEO of Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas since its formation in 1998. He is a CPA and fellow in the American College of Medical Practice Executives.
Was there a pivotal moment in life that led you to your current industry? Yes, when I came to the realization that I did not want to be a partner in a public accounting firm. Since the seventh grade, I had worked to attain my profession, but felt drawn to a mission in healthcare instead.
What is the strength of Northwest Arkansas? There is a real spirit of collaboration in Northwest Arkansas, with people from different industries always willing to work together to make good things happen.
What’s something interesting about you that people would be surprised to learn? I love to cook. In our household, our children grew up with dad in the kitchen and mom outside mowing the yard.
What’s the best book you’ve read this year? “No Shortage of Good Days” by John Gierach. It’s a fun, non-fiction book by an author who often writes about his own fishing and travel experiences and the relevance of fly fishing to everyday life.
What characteristic should every leader possess? Empathy. All leaders should be able to consider what it is like to walk in someone else’s shoes and treat others as they would want to be treated.