Katie Hoffman-Abby

Vice President, U Career Success; Assistant Dean, David Eccles School of Business

Business Career Success


Katie Hoffman-Abby is an experienced business executive working on the dean’s team building the school’s corporate outreach program. A 1984 University of Utah graduate in nutrition and food science, Ms. Hoffman-Abby began her career as a nutritionist for the Utah State Health Department. Shortly thereafter, she found a more permanent home in the healthcare staffing industry thriving as a physician recruiter for CHG Healthcare, then CompHealth.

The quintessential ‘you get back what you put in to life-leader,’ she co-founded VISTA Staffing Solutions in 1990. Serving first as COO and then as president, Ms. Hoffman-Abby played a key role in the development of the recruitment and credentials review processes that ensured only qualified physicians were recruited and placed. She also helped set the standard for assessing the quality of a match between a practice in need of help and a physician interested in work. She helped formalize these standards as a founding member of the National Association of Locum Tenens Organizations (NALTO), an industry organization established to create and enforce standards for ethics and good business practices in the physician staffing industry. She served a term as president of this association and on the board in many capacities including chairing the ethics and arbitration committees.

At VISTA, Ms. Hoffman-Abby helped build a culture of wellness making yoga, Pilates, and resistance training classes, and massage therapy available at discounted rates for employees. Gym memberships were also underwritten for employees committed to working out consistently. Leading by example, Ms. Abby, a self-described gym rat, is addicted to endurance sports and is a veteran of 16 marathons (including qualifying for and completing the Boston Marathon). She is an avid triathlete having completed more races than can be counted. She successfully finished the Wisconsin Ironman in 2007.

In 2007, VISTA was acquired by On Assignment (NYSE: ASGN), one of the largest healthcare, scientific, IT and engineering staffing companies in the U.S. Ms. Hoffman-Abby joined the executive team at On Assignment ultimately accepting the challenge of turning around a failing nurse travel division. As president of this unit, she doubled revenue in a period of less than three years, and the business was subsequently acquired by a large, national, travel nursing company.

Also in 2007, Ms. Hoffman-Abby was honored to be selected as one of “30 Women to Watch” by Utah Business Magazine. The Women to Watch program recognizes female business owners or high-level executives who are dynamic professionals with demonstrated records of success within their fields and the community.

Ms. Abby is a proud mother of two sons. She loves endurance sports, scuba diving, world travel and independent film. She’s also a freelance consultant working with several fun and interesting businesses to improve processes and increase profitability. Ms. Abby sits on the board of Reef Conservation International, ReefCI, a Belize-based non-profit organization dedicated to marine conservation.

At a time in life when most people would be relishing retirement, Ms. Hoffman-Abby is restless. “I’m young and still have a lot to give. I’m excited to transfer my experience and skill sets to new industries and to work with stimulating and talented people and students.”