Summit Medical Group Leadership

Ed Curtis, CMPE 
Chief Executive Officer​

Ed Curtis is the CEO for Summit Medical Group and is responsible for all operational aspects, including practice support and development, diagnostic and therapeutic services and directional responsibility for Summit Inpatient Services. He is a Certified Medical Practice Executive (CMPE), with a business administration degree from West Virginia University, and he completed the Graduate School of Credit and Financial Management at Dartmouth College.

Prior to joining Summit, Curtis was chief operating officer at Hattiesburg Clinic, a 300-plus physician-owned multi-specialty provider practice with more than 40 locations in southern Mississippi. At Hattiesburg Clinic, he developed the strategic plan and tactical initiatives to open a Sleep and Spine Center, Infusion Clinic and Breast Center. He also served as the negotiator for physician contracts with several hospitals and oversaw the clinic’s conversion to new electronic medical records (EMR) software. In addition, Curtis led clinical operations for the Departments of Surgery and Medicine as well as Ancillary Services and served as the clinic’s privacy officer.

Prior to joining Hattiesburg Clinic, Curtis served as vice president for Hood Industries, a national wood manufacturing wholesale distributor with 18 locations in Mississippi, where he oversaw the distribution and sales of a $200 million industry. He also served as the chief financial officer/vice president of finance for J.J. Haines & Company in Maryland, a national flooring distributor, developing and executing business plans for a $330 million distribution business.


Ranee Taylor Guard, Ph.D. 
Chief Operating Officer

Ranee Guard, Ph.D., is Summit’s Chief Operating Officer and is responsible for overseeing Diagnostic and Therapeutic Services along with overall operations for Summit Medical Group and its more than 50 primary care offices. Guard joined Summit in 2012 and directed the growth and development of Diagnostic and Therapeutic Services, including Summit Express Clinics, central laboratory, diagnostic imaging, physical therapy, sleep services and clinical trials.

Prior to joining Summit, Guard served as Chief Operations and Development Officer for KDL Pathology in Knoxville, supervising medical laboratory services as well as business development, operations and regulatory compliance. She previously served as Director of Business Development for Geneuity Clinical Research Services & Molecular Pathology Laboratory Network, Inc. (MPLN), a national Molecular Diagnostics and Clinical Trials service provider, where she was responsible for client and service development for the new clinical trials division. Guard started her career as a research scientist at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Guard earned her Ph.D. in molecular genetics from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, after receiving her bachelor’s degree in biology from Baylor University in Waco. She is a member of the Association for Molecular Pathology, American Association for Clinical Chemistry, Science Advisory Board and Executive Women’s Association, among other professional affiliations.


Eric Penniman, DO
Executive Medical Director 

Dr. Eric Penniman is the executive medical director for Summit Medical Group. He serves as the liaison between Summit Medical Group healthcare providers and the support staff, patients, business partners and community, and he facilitates the ongoing transition of all practices from fee-for-service to a fee-for-value model. Penniman leads Summit practice sites and providers in providing a value-based system focused on patient experience and quality clinical outcomes.

Penniman has practiced family medicine throughout his 21-year career. Since 2011, he served as district medical director for primary care for Marshfield Clinic in Wisconsin, overseeing 125 providers representing clinics throughout a 200-mile radius. He also served as the clinic’s regional physician champion for advanced access and the associate director for quality improvement since 2004 and as physician champion for informatics since 2002. He helped to pioneer the model for electronic medical records (EMR) for the Marshfield Clinic practice sites and oversaw quality metrics during a transition of focus from “volume to value.” Prior to these roles, he led the Stettin Center and the systems family medicine department of about 100 physicians.

Penniman earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and his doctor of osteopathic degree from Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine in Kirksville, Missouri. He completed his internship at Tulsa Regional Medical Center and his residency at University of Wisconsin, Wausau Family Practice Center. He is certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and licensed by the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners.

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