Desert Hope Treatment Center’s New CEO Refuses to Lead from Behind a Desk
Desert Hope Treatment Center’s New CEO, Derek Price, isn’t the traditional executive. He doesn’t believe in wearing a suit or spending countless hours behind a desk. Instead, he spends the majority of his time connecting directly with patients, including eating lunch and dinner with them every day.
“For someone to check into Desert Hope, they are often at one of the lowest points in their life, and they don’t need to see someone up in an ivory tower wearing a three-piece suit trying to relate to them,” said Price. “If I’m at my desk for more than an hour a day, that’s not typical. I like to put on casual clothing and sit with patients. I want to hear their stories and learn what we can do to better serve them. You can’t get that connection sitting behind a desk. That’s the culture I want to create at our facility, and I’m leading by example.”
Price has dedicated most of his career to helping people get better, a passion spurred by his own health challenges. A neck injury forced him to retire from the NFL after two seasons with the Detroit Lions. It was during his recovery that Price decided to pursue a healthcare career and obtain a Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Life University in Atlanta. At the time, he already had a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Iowa. Shortly after, he opened his first clinic.
“My goal in life is to help people be the best versions of themselves,” said Price.
Over the past 20 years, Price has owned and operated more than a dozen multidisciplinary clinics, an anesthesiology practice, a billing company and several CrossFit gyms. He has also served as a business consultant, showing healthcare companies how to operate more efficiently. He plans to use those skills to catapult Desert Hope to a new level in patient care and to position the treatment center as a go-to resource in the community for those struggling with drug and/or alcohol addiction and co-occurring mental health conditions.
“Desert Hope is the best kept secret in this community and it’s time to change that,” said Price. “That’s why I also spend a significant amount of my time out in the community. With our nation and our community in crisis, people need to know there is hope and help. My team is committed to doing all we can to save lives.”
It’s a mission Price takes very seriously, and he’s known for taking on challenges even in his personal life. The exercise enthusiast has competed in more than 50 triathlons, ran his own military-inspired bootcamps, and last summer swam the English Channel to raise money for a charity helping veterans returning from war. He also finds time to raise three girls with his wife of nearly 30 years.
About Desert Hope Treatment Center