Robert “Bob” J. Gfeller, Jr., MBA
Robert “Bob” Gfeller, MBA, executive vice president, external relations, and chief marketing officer, oversees Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center’s marketing and philanthropy divisions and serves as executive director and chief operating officer for the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma.
Gfeller draws from his professional and personal experiences in his approach to patient/physician communication and customer experience. A dynamic business professional who combines marketing experience for Fortune 500 companies with non-profit business sector expertise, he held a series of executive positions in marketing, merchandising, strategy, and customer experience during a 30-year corporate career with major international companies such as Colgate-Palmolive, Nabisco, Coca-Cola and Lowe’s Home Improvement.
Gfeller joined the non-profit world in 2014 as executive director of the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma, a 501c3 public charity founded at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, NC. Solidifying its direction and advancing national awareness of its mission, he has accelerated the Institute’s progress in fund-raising and its research and education programs to reduce childhood death caused by severe injury.
In late 2015, Gfeller added the role of chief marketing officer and oversight of the Medical Center’s communications and marketing to his responsibilities, ensuring a research-supported, customer-centric point of view to marketing activities. In May 2016, to better position Wake Forest Baptist for all external constituents, Gfeller also assumed oversight of the philanthropy team, becoming EVP of external relations.
Gfeller’s passion for the health, safety and care of children is personal. He served as president of the Matthew Gfeller Foundation from 2008 to 2017, a 501c3 organization founded in 2008 in honor of his son Matthew. Matthew died at age 15 after he sustained a traumatic brain injury playing football for Reynolds High School in Winston-Salem. Gfeller and his wife, Lisa, have made it their personal mission to insure that youth sports safety is improved for boys and girls through the work of the Matthew Gfeller Sport Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center founded at the University of North Carolina in 2011 with their lead philanthropy. Lisa and Bob have two adult children, Robbie, who lives and works in Chapel Hill, NC, and Haley, who lives and works in Washington, D.C.
Gfeller earned a master’s degree of business administration in marketing from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Franklin and Marshall College.