TABLE OF CONTENTS
Manuscript Collection No. 349
Leon Felson was born in 1918 to Mr and Mrs. Saul Felson, Russian immigrants living in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was the youngest of eight children and graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 1941 in pre-med. Felson left medical school to serve in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II. He rose from the rank of private to first lieutenant and was assigned as the regimental communications officer for the Fifteenth Marine Artillery Regiment.
Following his return from the war, Felson earned first his BS in Mathematics from Ohio State University in 1951 and his Masters of Science in Hospital Administration from Northwestern University in 1954. He served in Kansas City, Missouri before becoming the chief executive officer of Mount Sinai Hospital in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1963. He served there until 1970 when he became the first lay director of St. Mary's Hospital, also in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Felson pioneered several ideas including a hospital plan that responded to city disasters and a computerized cooperative system for patient data and hospital administrative information. He also became deeply involved in youth protests over a curfew in a park next to St. Mary's.
In 1972, Felson moved to Chicago, Illinois to direct an expanding HMO at Ravenswood Medical Center. He also served as a consultant for Blue Cross and the State of Illinois. Shortly after taking a new job in 1979, Felson was diagnosed with cancer. He passed away later that year.
Felson was married and had one son, David Felson.
The Leon Felson Papers describe the professional career and activities of Leon Felson, a pioneer in healthcare administration and the development of health management organizations (HMOs). Felson was a longtime administrator both in Wisconsin and Illinois. The collection consists of correspondence, biography, reports, newsclippings and other materials.
This collection is arranged in two (2) series:
Terms of Access and Use
The Leon Felson Papers are open to all users. The original manuscript collection is available in the Barrows-Loebelson Reading Room of the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives.
Property and Literary Rights
Mrs. Leon Felson, by the act of donating the Leon Felson Papers to the American Jewish Archives, assigned all property rights to the American Jewish Archives. Literary rights are retained by Leon Felson and his heirs. Literary rights may also be retained by specific creators of materials.
Questions concerning rights should be addressed to the Executive Director of the American Jewish Archives. For more information see the American Jewish Archives copyright information webpage.
Footnotes and bibliographic references should refer to the Leon Felson Papers and the American Jewish Archives. A suggestion for at least the first citation is as follows:
[Description], [Date], Box #, Folder #. MS-349. Leon Felson Papers. American Jewish Archives, Cincinnati, Ohio.
The Leon Felson Papers were received from Mrs. Leon Felson, Evanston, Illinois, in 1983, 1988, and 1990. Additioanl materials were recieved from Virginia Felson in 2007.
Processed by American Jewish Archives staff. Additional processing by Michelle Wirth Detroit, December, 2011.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the AJA's online catalog.
Persons and Families
Felson, Leon, -- 1918-1979 -- Photographs
Health maintenance organizations
Hospitals -- Illinois -- Evanston -- Administration
Hospitals -- Missouri -- Kansas City -- Administration
Hospitals -- Wisconsin -- Administration
Jews -- Illinois -- Evanston
Genres and Forms
Hospital administrators -- Illinois -- Evanston