As 4 Healthcare Systems Transform into Ascension Wisconsin, New Leadership Structure Taking Shape

May24, 2016

MILWAUKEE  – Four longtime healthcare organizations in the state, Affinity Health System, Columbia St. Mary’s, Ministry Health Care and Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare, are integrating into Ascension Wisconsin. As the largest non-profit health system in the U.S. and the world’s largest Catholic health system, Ascension is committed to delivering high-quality, compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable.

As integration work continues, organizational transformation is underway to ensure both the right structure and leadership are in place for Ascension Wisconsin to continue to serve communities across the state most effectively, continuing a legacy that began more than a century ago. A new leadership structure across Ascension Wisconsin will be transitioned in the next 90-120 days that includes a Northern Region and a Southern Region, each led by a President. Recruitment efforts for both positions are underway.

Current Ministry Health Care President Daniel E. Neufelder has elected not to pursue the new position of President of the Northern Region of Ascension Wisconsin. Neufelder joined the organization 10 years ago as President and CEO of Affinity Health System and transitioned to Ministry Health Care when it fully acquired Affinity in 2012. He succeeded Nick Desien as President and CEO of Ministry Health Care in December 2014.

“As we look toward the future of our statewide health ministry, we are seeking to build an organization led by highly talented executives and leaders who will continue to honor the traditions of our founders as they address 21st century healthcare needs of people and communities across the state,” noted Bernie Sherry, Senior Vice President, Ascension Health/Wisconsin Ministry Market Executive. “We were sorry to learn of Dan’s decision not to continue with the organization, as Dan has been a key member of the leadership team for Affinity, Ministry and Ascension for many years, but we respect his decision to begin a new phase in his life.”

“During the last 10 years it has been an honor to work with the physicians, clinicians, associates and volunteers of Affinity, Ministry and Ascension,” Neufelder said. “I am very proud of the accomplishments we have made to better serve our patients, to make healthcare affordable, and to create a better work environment for our associates and physicians.”

Neufelder will stay in his current role until the new President of the Northern Region has been recruited and oriented to the position over the next few months. After leaving Ascension, Neufelder plans on spending more time with his family, engaging in charitable work and providing healthcare consulting services.

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