LifeStance CEO Mike Lester leaves

  • Push-out Score determined
  • After about five years in the position
  • Praise, thanks and good wishes for Lester
  • Ken Burdick taking over
  • Lester spoke at length and said 141 words

(exechange) — Scottsdale, Arizona, September 8, 2022 — Mike Lester, chief executive of LifeStance, leaves. As announced by LifeStance Health Group Inc. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Thursday, September 8, 2022, Michael K. (Mike) Lester has left his post as chief executive officer at the provider of in-person and virtual outpatient mental healthcare, after about five years in the role, effective September 7, 2022.

Mike Lester’s duties as CEO will be taken over by Kenneth (Ken) Burdick, most recently Executive Vice President of Markets and Products at Centene Corporation.

The fact that Mike Lester’s successor is brought in from outside suggests that the board may seek to stimulate change with fresh ideas and new initiatives.

In general, an outsider does not have the constraints of an insider when it comes to leading painful changes or making unpopular decisions.

Mike Lester’s move coincides with a management shake-up also involving the position of President.

No reason given

In the announcement, LifeStance did not explicitly explain the reason for the move.

Precise information regarding Mike Lester’s future plans was not immediately available.


LifeStance said: “Burdick succeeds Michael Lester, who has served as the company’s founding Chief Executive Officer and Chairman since 2017 and will be retiring. Lester will continue to serve as a Strategic Advisor to the company.”

LifeStance further said: “On September 7, 2022 (the “Effective Date”), the Board of Directors of LifeStance Health Group, Inc. (“LifeStance” or the “Company”) appointed Kenneth Burdick as the Company’s new Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of Directors. Mr. Burdick succeeds Michael Lester, who has served as the Company’s President and Chief Executive Officer and Chairman since 2017 and who is retiring from his officer and director roles effective upon Mr. Burdick’s appointment on the Effective Date.”

Share price decline since July 2021

The announcement follows a decline in LifeStance Health Group Inc.’s share price of 72% since July 2021.

In the position of CEO since 2017

Mike Lester became CEO of the Company in 2017.

Michael K. Lester is a co-founder of LifeStance and has served as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Company’s Board of Directors since 2017.

Prior to founding LifeStance, Lester was the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Accelecare Wound Centers, a comprehensive wound care and disease management company.

Prior to that, Lester was a Venture Partner at Bain Capital and SV Life Sciences and founder and Chief Executive Officer of Radiant Research, a comprehensive clinical research company providing Phase I-IV study conduct and drug development services to the biopharmaceutical industry.

Lester was formerly a board member and President of the Texas State Board of Pharmacy. He serves on The University of Texas College of Pharmacy Pharmaceutical Foundation Advisory Council, is a member of the board of directors of Upperline Health, Inc., and is a senior advisor to Silversmith Capital Partners.

Lester previously served on the board of directors of Accelecare Wound Centers, Inc. and Radiant Research, Inc.

He holds a BS in Pharmacy from the University of Texas.

Push-out Score determined

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange gauges the pressure surrounding Mike Lester’s move on a scale of 0 to 10.

exechange reached out to LifeStance and offered the company the opportunity to comment on the score.

Read the full story in the exechange report 37.2022 ($).