After receiving his Associate in Science degree from Lincoln Land Community College in May of 1990, Bruce went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in Business from Eastern Illinois University. After completing his studies, Bruce acquired his brokerage and insurance licenses and worked for four years at First of America Bank (now PNC). In 1996, Bruce went to work for the Catholic diocese of Springfield and began traveling to Haiti on a regular basis. From late 1996 through 2000, he made 13 trips to Haiti. In October of 2000, he accepted a position with an organization in Haiti and moved there two months later to be the Director of Administration and Finance for the Haitian Health Foundation.
In November of 2002, Bruce returned from Haiti with a dream of providing medical supplies and equipment to people in need in Haiti and throughout the world. He approached the Hospital Sisters Health System (HSHS) with the idea and they began to develop what is today Hospital Sisters Mission Outreach (HSMO). Bruce was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
For the first six months Bruce researched how best to engage hospitals in the effort to recycle and reuse medical surplus. In March of 2003, the 13 HSHS hospital CEO’s responded to his plan, and the mission was up and running. Statistics show that the U.S. healthcare system discards an estimated $6.5 billion of medical supplies and equipment each year. A large percentage of these items are still usable and capable of saving lives yet many of them end up in landfills.
Today HSMO has warehouses in Springfield and Chicago. The employees and hundreds of volunteers are making an enormous impact on the environment while saving lives around the globe. Since 2006, HSMO has taken in three million pounds of recycled medical supplies and processed them through their responsible redistribution system. The value of these materials exceeds $16,000,000.
Bruce says, “After traveling to Haiti in the 90s, my view of the world changed. I knew I had to do more to assist people in need. My time at Lincoln Land Community College had, in many ways, prepared me for this transition. As a student at LLCC, I became aware of the global community through interactions with teachers, staff and students. LLCC provided a great transition from high school to college, and helped prepare me for the many challenges I face today as I work to identify opportunities to assist those in need around the world.”
Bruce Compton is a selfless humanitarian. He truly thinks of others all the time, especially those that need our nation’s compassion and assistance. With his drive and passion for helping others, the sky is the limit. LLCC is certainly proud to count him among its exceptional alums.