Theresa Pesch, President
Theresa Pesch is president of Children’s Health Care Foundation and vice president of development for Children’s Minnesota. Under Pesch's leadership, the fundraising for Children’s has increased by 300 percent, enabling it to provide substantial improvements in its facilities and medical technology that serve the region's pediatric population.
Prior to joining Children's in 2007, Pesch was vice president of marketing and development and executive director of Ridgeview Medical Center’s Foundation in Waconia, Minn. In this role, she led the most successful capital campaign in the Ridgeview Foundation’s history.
Pesch joined the TRUST board in 2013. She has also served in leadership roles for numerous boards over the years, currently serving on the board of directors for Cornerstone, First Step Initiative, and Minnesota Visiting Nurses Association (MVNA). Pesch is also a member of Women Business Leaders of the US Health Care Industry Foundation and a faculty member of Kaiser’s Philanthropy Innovation Institute and the AHP Madison Institute.
Originally trained in nursing, Pesch has 25 years of health care administration experience and is a sought-after presenter for national philanthropy conferences. She was recognized as a Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal Women in Business honoree in 2012.
Connie Delaney, President-Elect
Connie White Delaney is Professor and Dean at the School of Nursing at the University of Minnesota. She has served in this role since 2006 and simultaneously served as Associate Director of the Clinical Translational Science Institute –Biomedical Informatics, and Acting Director of the Institute for Health Informatics for the University’s Academic Health Center from 2010 to 2015.
Dr. Delaney was the first dean of nursing inducted into the College of Medical Informatics and was an inaugural appointee to the USA Health Information Technology Policy Committee of the Office of the Secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She is an active researcher and writer in the areas of national data and information technology standards development for nursing and health care, outcomes, safety, data science and translational science. She serves on numerous health, business and industry and policy boards. Dr. Delaney holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Viterbo University. She earned a Master of Arts in Nursing, a PhD in educational administration and computer applications, and completed postdoctoral study in nursing and medical informatics at the University of Iowa.
Connie has received a number of awards — including the Women in Business Award from Twin Cities Business Journal in 2011, the AMIA Virginia K. Saba Informatics Award in 2009, and a Leadership Award from the American Medical Informatics Association in 2005. She was named a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing in 1998.
Amy Ronneberg, Treasurer
Amy Ronneberg joined the National Marrow Donor Program/Be the Match (NMDP) in July 2013. She is responsible for planning, implementing and directing the National Marrow Donor Program's finance, government contracts, facilities, and tax management. In this role, Ronneberg assists the NMDP's executives and Board of Directors in developing and implementing a strategic business plan to meet the changing health care environment.
Along with her finance duties, Ronneberg provides guidance and leadership to the Enterprise Program Management Office (EPMO), which provides comprehensive oversight to portfolio, project and program lifecycles to ensure successful delivery. Ronneberg also is responsible for Marketing and Communications, focusing on developing strategic plans to internal staff and external partners, including our registry donors and transplant center partners.
Ronneberg has 20 years of experience in financial and operational leadership, most recently as Executive Vice President, CFO and Chief Operating Officer (COO) of North American Membership Group, a private equity-owned media company. Prior to that, she spent 12 years at Capella University, where she served as Vice President of Finance and led enterprise-wide operations and customer service. Ronneberg also worked for Ernst & Young for several years as an Audit Manager.
Ronneberg earned a Master's in Business Administration from Capella University, Minneapolis, and a B.B.A. in Accounting from University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Amy currently serves on several boards including Twin Cities in Motion, where she was also President for four years, SmileNetwork International and MobCon Health care.
Patricia Dennis, Secretary
Patricia Dennis is Chief Executive Officer at Fulcrum Health. As CEO, she provides strategic leadership and establishes long-ranging goals, strategies and policies. Working in concert with the board and leadership team, she guides Fulcrum in delivering high-quality, evidence-based physical medicine services.
Prior to joining Fulcrum, Ms. Dennis served as Senior Vice President for Health and Care Engagement at HealthPartners. In this role, she was responsible for the vision, strategic direction, and operational leadership to improve health and care for patients and members by delivering an integrated and personalized experience. Her areas of responsibility included behavioral health; case and disease management; health and well-being; quality improvement; utilization management; regulatory compliance; accreditation; worksite health; employer clinics; business development and integration; and health engagement solutions. In addition to her work at HealthPartners, Ms. Dennis has also served in leadership roles at Healthways/Tivity and Medica, and has held management positions in banking, commercial construction, and government service industries.
Patricia has been a member of the boards of directors and executive committees of various business, professional and foundation boards, and has been on the board of the TRUST since 2011.
Patricia graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in business administration from Minot State University, with additional specialized executive education from St. Thomas University, the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and the Harvard School of Business. Patricia is a recent graduate of the Leadership Program in Integrative Healthcare at Duke University.
In 2009, Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal honored Patricia as one of its “Women to Watch.”
Carol Kraft, Immediate Past President
Carol Kraft is an independent consultant. She has also served as President and Chief Operating Officer for SelectAccount, an affiliated company of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota that manages spending accounts. SelectAccount manages $2.3 billion dollars annually as consumers spend and save through their HSA, HRA, FSA and VEBA accounts. Carol previously served as the company Senior Vice President and COO. She has held leadership positions for over 30 years in the roles of technical operations, infrastructure, and information technology. Carol also served as the Chief Operating Officer for the International Publishing Management Association, a non-profit organization providing leadership and education to member companies.
Carol has been actively involved in numerous boards and organizations throughout her career. She has been a TRUST member since 2006. Carol has served on numerous advisory boards including Eastman Kodak, EDSF, and Xerox. Carol serves on the boards of CCStpa, a third party administrator providing solutions to business with self-funded health plans, the Walker Methodist Foundation and is a member of the executive leadership team for Go Red For Women. She also serves on the board of the American Bankers Association HSA Council in Washington, DC and is a member of Women Business Leaders (WBL). She is a past board member of Bluestone Credit Union and a past member of the Minnesota Minority Purchasing Council.
Carol earned a degree in communication from St. Paul College and a mini-Master's from the University of St. Thomas in software engineering. In her spare time, Carol enjoys leadership mentoring, singing and she specializes in fun.
Christine (Chris) Bent
Christine Bent leads the Allina Health Group, responsible for integrating primary care, specialty care and clinical service line capabilities to better serve our patients.
Earlier in her career, Bent was the chief operating officer of the Minneapolis Heart Institute® where, in conjunction with the physician president, she provided professional management to the 128-bed Heart Hospital within Abbott Northwestern Hospital and MHI®’s extensive outreach program. Her background is in physician practice management in both independent practices and integrated health care delivery systems.
Bent graduated from Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology and obtained her Master’s degree in health care administration from the University of Minnesota.
Julie Dekker is the Vice President, Operations for Fulcrum Health (formerly known as Chiropractic Care of Minnesota, Inc.), having joined the Fulcrum team in November 2014. An accomplished and versatile health care leader with over 18 years of experience, Dekker has a proven track record of performance and profitability in rapidly changing and dynamic environments. Prior to joining CCMI, she spent 11 years at Medica Health Plans as Director of Network Management, and most recently Director of Quality and Health Management Compliance. She is recognized as a focused, decisive and motivational leader with extensive knowledge and management experience in building, leading and growing teams, and creating strong and effective partnerships.
Dekker belongs to health care industry and philanthropic organizations such as Women’s Health Leadership TRUST (which she joined in 2009 and serves as Membership Committee co-chairperson and Recruitment co-chairperson), TeamWomenMN, Women Business Leaders of the US, American College of health care Executives and Woman’s Club of Minneapolis. She also has a broad range of volunteer experience with organizations such as Wooddale Church’s Women’s Ministry Leadership Team and the Omicron Omicron Alumni Chapter Board of Alpha Chi Omega, where she served three years as Treasurer. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors for the nonprofit organization MORE based in St. Paul.
Dekker received her Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from the University of Tampa and her Master’s degree in Public Health from the University of South Florida.
As vice president of consumer markets for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota (Blue Cross), Monica Engel leads individual, small group and government programs business segments with a focus on new and emerging opportunities arising from health care reform and the evolution of the health care industry. She provides strategic direction and counsel for sales and account management, sales oversight and compliance, agent and broker administration and emerging distribution channels. As part of this emerging work, Engel led a team to launch Minnesota’s first retail health insurance store in 2014!
Monica has more than 25 years of experience within the health care industry. She previously served as the senior director of strategic sales and account management with accountability for more than 1.2 million Blue Cross members. During her tenure at Blue Cross, she has held various leadership positions within the areas of operations, new business and account management.
Monica holds a degree in business management from Mayville State University and has completed the Minnesota Management Institute program at the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota. She serves on the Mii Life Inc./Select Account Board, Eagleview parent advisory council and is an active member of the Women’s Health Leadership TRUST Organization. Monica is a very busy mentor in and outside of Blue Cross and is passionate about helping to build our future women leaders.
Sharon Gabrielson is a health care executive with over 20 years of broad-based leadership experience in strategic and operational planning, practice, quality improvement, outcomes, safety and service. These experiences have included executive level leadership of both small and large health care systems, management of integrated health care organizations, and integration of clinical practices, multidisciplinary organizations, and stakeholders. She currently serves as Chair - Global Business Solutions at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.
Ms. Gabrielson is a member of many local and national committees for various organizations, is a published author, has made many presentations before various groups and is a member of the American Medical Group Association Board of Directors and the AMGA CAO Leadership Council.
Ms. Gabrielson received her Master of Arts in health administration and in management from St. Mary’s University; her Bachelor of Science in nursing from Winona State University; and her Associate of Arts in nursing from the St. Mary’s Junior College.
Sheri Henck is currently Vice President Global Operations at Medtronic. Sheri and her organization are responsible for designing manufacturing and supply chain processes providing execution excellence. Global Operations includes Manufacturing, New Product Launch, Supply Management, Packaging and Labeling, Manufacturing Engineering, Pharma Operations, Operational Excellence, commercial integration and overall Operations strategy for the Cardiac Rhythm and Heart Failure Business. Global manufacturing and development responsibilities include 13 manufacturing sites, $500M in inventory and 4700 people around the globe. Sheri is an Operations professional with strong leadership skills and a successful career in a variety of different business sectors including aerospace, industrial and medical devices. Her experience includes Supply Management, Operational Excellence, Organizational Development, lean manufacturing and technologies, productivity and organization transformation. Sheri started her career at Medtronic in 2009.
Sheri is involved in leading many other teams and organizations at Medtronic. She serves in an appointed role as Chair of the Medtronic Women’s Network. She introduced the MWN Global Manufacturing and Operations Hub serving aspiring Operations leaders across the globe. Sheri is also a certified Medtronic Coach and mentors several people across Medtronic.
Prior to Medtronic, Sheri spent 19 years with Honeywell in a variety of leadership positions.
Sheri also spent 6 years as General Manager of Fabrico, Inc., a precision metal fabrication company located in Champlin, MN.
Outside of Medtronic, Sheri served on the Osceola, WI Community Health Foundation Board for 5 years.
Sheri holds a BA in Organizational Management from Concordia University. She is a Certified Purchasing Manager (CPM) from NAPM and a certified Medtronic Coach through CTI. Sheri resides in North Oaks, MN with Dan and her son Michael who is a Sr. at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Beth Honkomp is currently the Vice President for Performance Excellence for CentraCare Health System (CCH). Beth’s responsibilities include overseeing quality, patient safety, patient experience, performance improvement, infection prevention and control, value analysis and clinical analytics, public reporting, patient experience, and regulatory compliance for the entire system in conjunction with her physician co-Vice President.
Beth has worked for the St. Cloud Hospital for over 30 years and recently became a CentraCare Health System employee. Beth has been in various leadership roles throughout her tenure at St. Cloud Hospital and CentraCare Health. Beth is a member of the Minnesota Hospital Association’s Patient Safety Committee and the association’s Registry Advisory Committee for Adverse Health Events. Beth graduated from the University of Minnesota for both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in nursing. She also received an executive MBA from the University of St. Thomas.
Ellyn Hosch is the Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer at Prime Therapeutics. She has also served as VP, Application Development and Support and as AVP, Information Technology, at Prime Therapeutics since joining the company in 2008.
Hosch previously served as VP, Business Improvement at UnitedHealth Group, as VP, Participant Operations at Diversified Pharmaceutical Services, and in management at Honeywell.
She earned a Bachelor's degree from University of Minnesota - Morris and an MBA in Business Management from the University of St. Thomas. Hosch was named one of 50 Women in Business Award winners by Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal in 2014; also that year, she was named as one of 35 Women Leaders by the Women's Health Leadership TRUST.
Jana Johnson most recently served as the senior vice president of health and provider services for Medica, where she was responsible for the organization’s health plan operations, providing oversight of enrollment and billing, employer and provider contract implementations and associated operations, as well as commercial and provider call center service and issue resolution. She also sets policy for and provides contractual oversight of administrative services provided to Medica by its major vendors.
Prior to joining Medica, Johnson was at HealthPartners for almost 10 years. Most recently, she served as the vice president of contracted operations and managed care systems. Before that, she served as the chief of staff to the CEO and was the senior director for strategic planning. Johnson's experience also includes care delivery systems in new business development, planning and marketing.
Johnson joined the TRUST board in 2013. She is also a member of Women’s Business Leadership, and serves on the advisory board of the Children’s Defense Fund. In addition, Johnson is active in the AHIP and Menttium Mentorship programs. She is a former board member of the Boys & Girls Club of the Twin Cities, and a past instructor at Metropolitan State University in Minneapolis.
Johnson has a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minn., and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Minnesota.
Leslie McDonnell is a business executive with 20 years of leadership experience at world class companies: 3M, Medtronic, The Pillsbury Company (now General Mills). She is currently the Business & Marketing Vice-President for the Critical & Chronic Care Solutions Division of 3M, a $30 billion global science company focused on innovation. She provides strategic and operational leadership for one of the fastest growing businesses within 3M and has P&L responsibility for a healthcare business portfolio with over $1 billion in global sales. She is also a member of the Division Operating Committee.
Leslie McDonnell came to 3M in 2013 with deep experience in the medical device industry. She began her 12 years at Medtronic in the Corporate Merger & Acquisition group. She then held several roles with increasing responsibility in business development, new therapy and product development, and marketing and business leadership in the Neuromodulation and Cardiac Rhythm Disease Management divisions. There she achieved consistent success in driving breakthrough strategies to accelerate domestic and international growth in multiple business models and market conditions.
Leslie is recognized as a strategic thinker and creative leader respected for building and motivating high performing global teams. With diverse cross functional expertise and knowledge, Leslie is uniquely able to foster collaboration and build strong bridges with technical and business functions. She also serves as a mentor for employees throughout the organization. In 2009 she was selected as a 40 Under Forty honoree for business and community leadership by the Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal.
Leslie earned an MBA in marketing as an International Business Fellow from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. In addition, she has degrees in Finance and Spanish language.
Nancy McMorran has been with DeCare Dental LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of WellPoint, Inc., for 20 years and is the Senior Vice President of Professional Services and Government Programs and Staff Vice President of WellPoint's Dental Professional Services. She holds a degree in health care Policy and in Nursing. She attended the Columbia University Graduate School of Business Senior Executive Program. Prior to joining DeCare Dental, she had extensive experience as Director of Nurses and Area Administrator for a national health care corporation, Medicaid fraud investigator, Health Care Policy Analyst and Director of Health Care Policy for Medicaid, General Assistance Medical Care and MinnesotaCare for the Minnesota Department of Human Services.
Nancy McMorran is responsible for executive oversight of Professional Services which includes development, management, administration of dental provider networks internationally; dental network credentialing; dental government programs administration; quality improvement; regulatory compliance; product licensure, regulatory filings, grievance and appeals, utilization management and clinical policy.
She is an active member of the community, previously serving as a board member for the Minnesota State University and College Foundation, as Treasurer, has served as Vice Chair of Prevent Child Abuse Minnesota and was a mentor in the Hope for Tomorrow program. She is a member of Women Business Leaders in Health Care, the Women's Health Leadership TRUST and Team WomenMN. In addition, she owns retail businesses in Mankato and Hastings.
Dee Thibodeau is CEO of Charter Solutions, a health care information services company consistently awarded for results in the areas of management consulting, analytics, business process, integration, and application development. Prior to this role, Dee served as president of EDI Solutions, a translation software developer, and negotiated the merger of EDI with St. Paul Software where she served as executive vice president until taking the helm of Charter Solutions. Dee also served as president of Milestone Investments, Inc. a national hotel investment company, and was president of Arco Transcription, Inc. one of the nation’s largest medical transcription companies.
Dee has been a Board Member of the TRUST since 2005 and actively serves on numerous boards. Throughout her career, her leadership has extended to serving on the boards of directors of more than a dozen companies including Dri-Steem, The Credit Company, Microworx, Arco Transcription, Milestone Investments, EDI Solutions, HCMC Advisory Board, as well as on boards of trade, professional and non-profit organizations. Currently she serves on the Board of Directors of BRAAS, Minnesota High Tech Association, and Minnesota Visiting Nurses Agency. She also started Minnesota Women Corporate Directors and is on the Advisory Board for Women in the Boardroom.
Dee is an alumna of the University of Minnesota, Mankato, and of the Executive Management Development Program at University of St. Thomas, in St. Paul, MN. She has received leadership awards and recognition from The Business Journal, Div 500, Twin Cities E-Commerce Forum, and the National Association of Women Business Owners.
She is the captain of her boat, and enjoys chartering trips for friends and family when the weather permits. She is also an avid world traveler and investor in emerging companies.
Stacie Usem is a partner at Lurie, LLP in charge of the company's Entrepreneurial Services Group. Lurie, LLP, one of the top 100 accounting and consulting firms in the nation, has been working with health care providers throughout its history. Stacie acts as a business advisor to help clients achieve their business goals. From a functional standpoint, Stacie focuses on financial planning and modeling, internal control studies, compensation and income tax planning, employee benefit plans, governance, and succession planning. Prior to this role, Stacie served as staff accountant for Checkers, Simon & Rosner.
Stacie earned an accounting degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Business. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Minnesota Society of CPAs, the Medical Group Managers Association and the Minnesota Medical Group Managers Association.
Stacie has been a member of the TRUST since 2009. Stacie is also a member of the Women Presidents’ Organization.
Mary Welsh is director, Corporate Security, for UnitedHealth Group, the most diversified health care company in the United States. UnitedHealth Group, based in Minnetonka, Minn., is 6th on the Fortune 500 and has more than 200,000 employees.
She previously served as director of the Global Security function at St. Jude Medical. Prior to joining St. Jude Medical, Ms. Welsh served in the Federal U.S. Government, which included several international assignments in Europe and Southeast Asia. While working on national security issues, Ms. Welsh acquired a deep understanding of foreign government and business cultures, developed expertise in security and crisis management, and established a global network of government and private sector contacts in the security industry.
Ms. Welsh joined the Board of Directors for the Women's Health Leadership TRUST in 2014. She is also on the executive board of the Twin Cities Security Partnership, a private-public partnership between law enforcement, government agencies, and private industry which promotes a stronger, safer Twin Cities community. In addition, Ms. Welsh serves as a community advisor to the internationally recognized Pediatric Pain, Palliative Care and Integrative Medicine Clinic at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota.
Ms. Welsh holds a B.A. degree from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., and completed the Senior Executive Leadership Program at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
Kim Wiese is Vice President, Portfolio Management and Growth, at Hennepin County Medical Center. She was previously the senior vice president of strategy and product management for ActiveHealth, a subsidiary of Aetna. Prior to ActiveHealth, Kim spent 4½ years as a vice president of Marketing at Optum for the clinical health care management arm. In this role, Kim oversaw strategic positioning and marketing for over 100 services across seven product categories. She then moved on to lead international marketing, with oversight over global product marketing, and team collaboration on global expansion initiatives. After leaving Optum in the fall of 2012, Kim founded Wise Partners, a health care marketing consultancy, working for clients in the non-profit, as well as the for-profit sector.
Kim joined Optum from Regency Beauty Institute. As Vice President of Marketing at Regency, Kim developed the marketing brand, strategy, PR and communications plan, lead generation engine, and digital presence, growing the start-up educational institute from 8 campuses to national leadership. Kim's career also includes progressive management and responsibility in marketing, consulting, and account management with General Mills, Polaroid, Digitas, and Springworks.
Kim joined the Board of Directors for the Women's Health Leadership TRUST in 2011. She is also the Chair of the Arts & Healing initiative at Children's Hospitals and Clinics of MN, and a member of Women Business Leaders in Health care Foundation (WBL) and the Minnesota Interactive Marketing Association.
Kim earned her Master's of business administration from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business in New York City and has been the class ambassador for over 15 years. She holds a Bachelor's degree in marketing from the University of Northern Iowa.
She is one of 13 children, and is a twin. In her spare time, Kim might be found pursuing her artistic passions, which include mosaic art, photography, and writing.