Many pathologists currently leading academic pathology programs and private pathology groups got some of their best business advice from Laurence J. Peterson, CPA. For more than 30 years, Peterson was involved in the operation of both clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups throughout the nation.
Peterson’s family reported that he died on December 25, 2017. He was the President of Torrey Consulting Group, Inc., based for many years in El Paso, Texas, before relocating to Surprise, Arizona, in the years before his retirement in 2005.
As early as 1967, he was the Chief Financial Officer of Lutheran Hospital of Maryland, an inner city teaching hospital in Baltimore. By 1977, he was the Vice President of Finance for Tulane University in New Orleans, where he was responsible for developing the university’s first balanced budget in almost 50 years. While at Tulane, Peterson oversaw development of systems and procedures in the University’s new hospital, structured the medical faculty practice plan, established rate strategies, and negotiated.
Peterson’s successes at this major academic medical center brought him to the attention of other academic institutions. Within a few years, Peterson was in high demand to help academic departments of pathology and laboratory medicine with their business and management needs.
Leader of TIPII
During the 1980s, with his consulting company now well-established, Peterson was chosen to be the President and Executive Director of The Independent Pathology Institute, Inc. (TIPII). This was an association of several dozen of the larger regional independent clinical lab companies still owned and operated by pathologists.
Torrey Consulting built an impressive list of clients in 46 states. During the last 20 years of his career, Peterson was particularly focused on consulting with academic and private pathology groups across the nation.
Peterson served as an advisor to medical societies in matters pertaining to physicians’ compensation, third party payer reimbursement, cost containment, joint ventures and contractual arrangements. He was regularly invited to speak on these subjects at clinical lab meetings and anatomic pathology conferences. His wife Jeannie often accompanied him on his travels and had an active role in the company.