40 Under 40 Class of 2007 Cover Story

Richard Corder

Age 37. Vice President of Operations and Facilities Management, Cooley Dickinson Hospital

Richard Corder has spent the past few years leading two major construction projects: a $50 million expansion of Cooley Dickinson Hospital — and a tree fort he is building with his 10-year-old son, Harrison.

He is extremely proud of the fact that, with regard to the former (completed just a few weeks ago), he could consistently report that it was on time and on budget. And he’s equally proud that, when it comes to the latter (still ongoing), he can say neither. “There never was a schedule, and there never was a budget, which is good, because having either would take a lot of the fun out of it.”

Corder has managed to pack several different kinds of fun into his balance of life and work since he came to CDH as director of Guest Services in 2000, and has since been promoted twice. A native of Nottingham, England who immigrated to the U.S. in 1993 and spent many years in the hospitality sector before seguing into health care, Corder likes brewing his own beer, collecting and drinking fine wines, cooking, arranging flowers, and sailing, which is one of his few regrets about relocating to the Northampton area. “I can only do it maybe once or twice a year.”

Being farther away from the ocean than he would like is about the only thing Corder can complain about these days. He’s enjoying every aspect of being a husband and father of two, and has found a great measure of fulfillment in his work at CDH, especially the expansion project, which he called a career milestone.

Actually, he summoned a good number of adjectives to describe the massive addition, planning for which began soon after he arrived at the hospital. “When I look back on my career thus far, it’s probably been one of the most exciting, rewarding, challenging, frustrating, joy-filled, professional endeavors I’ve been involved with.

“To have been permitted this opportunity is something I’ll never forget,” he continued. “I’ve learned a lot personally, and we’ve learned a lot as an organization.”

As for the tree house … “my wife was walking around for a year saying, ‘I could have bought a new couch,’” he joked. No word yet on when it will be completed. As he said, there’s no timetable, and he likes it that way.