Collaboration, Inspiration and Thank Yous

By Chris Bent, TRUST President

Another TRUST Forum is in the books! Thank you to everyone who attended our second virtual Forum to celebrate, be inspired and recognize the power within us all. An event of this magnitude takes a lot of planning and people, and I’d like to thank the many individuals and organizations who helped make our 2021 TRUST Forum so inspiring.

First, I would like to recognize the commitment and hard work of our talented Forum committee members who have worked diligently behind the scenes for the past year to bring the Forum and Awards Celebration to life. This is the second year this amazing committee rose to the challenge of putting on a major virtual event due to the pandemic. Thank you to the following women for providing your time, talent and treasure to make our annual Forum a success: Co-Chairs – Julie Dekker and Amy Dewane; Rhoda Beaird, Leslie Bodell, Monica Engel, Rhonda Evans, Lindsey Farwell, Joy King, Jean Machart, Rachel Nelson, Lindsey Niswanger, Sonja O’Brien, Dr. Lisa Saul, Anne Schmiechen, Holly Scholl and Mary Welsh.

And I would also like to thank my fellow TRUST Board of Directors. These women represent all facets of the health care industry and share a vision to create healthier communities by recognizing women’s leadership potential. I am honored to serve the TRUST alongside these remarkable women and appreciate their continued leadership during trying times.

Next, I give my gratitude and thanks to all of our committed sponsors. The TRUST thrives because of the continued engagement of its members, connections and community. This includes the ongoing support of generous sponsors who make events such as the Forum possible. We give special thanks and recognition, in ascending order, to our key Forum sponsors:

In-Kind Sponsors: ModernWell and Susan Bordson

Contributor Level Sponsors: Be the Match, Eide Bailly, Fathom Consulting, Medica, MyMeds, Ryan Companies, and Twin Cities Orthopedics

Bronze Sponsors: Davis, Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, Lurie, Mayo Clinic and M Health Fairview

Silver Sponsors: Allina Health, CentraCare, Children’s Minnesota, HealthPartners Park Nicollet, Prime Therapeutics, and West Monroe

Gold Sponsors: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, and St. Catherine University

Media Sponsor: Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal

Diamond Sponsors: Optum, UnitedHealth Care, and UnitedHealth Group

And our signature event would not be complete without the Forum Awards. Thank you to everyone who made a nomination and to the judges—Dale Cook, Dr. Patrick Courneya, Ruth Hafoka, Dr. Nneka Sederstrom, and Pam Stegora Axberg—for their time, careful consideration and support of women leaders in health care. In the end, 20 outstanding women were selected in five categories. Please watch our awardee video to learn more about these remarkable women: Taylor Hohmann; Jana Martin; Sheila Riggs, DDS, DMSc; Penny Wheeler, MD; Lita Etemad; Helene Freint; Jessica Holm; Jessie Waks; Julia Crist; Sarah Dye; Annie Ideker, MD; Leena Pradhan-Nabzdyk, PhD; Minda Garcia; Samantha Hanson; Arti Prasad, MD, FACP; Anjoli Punjabi; Asha Hassan; Hilal Ibrahim; Cindy Kaigama; and Pinar Karaca-Mandic, PhD. Congratulations to all Forum Award winners!

Of course, we also celebrated this year’s 21st Century Pinnacle Leader Award recipient, Allison O’Toole, CEO of Second Harvest Heartland. Her work strongly supported this year’s Forum theme, Power of Us, as she stood out for her strong decision-making skills and compassionate leadership throughout the pandemic. Thank you, Allison, for all you have done and will continue to do to prioritize nutrition and improve public health.

Finally, thank you to our four incredible speakers Meredith Leigh Moore, Minnesota Representative Ruth Richardson, Nneka Sederstrom, PhD, MPH, MA, FCCP, FCCM, and Sanya Pirani who shared their experiences and passion with us. We appreciate their thought-provoking insights and inspirational stories that demonstrated how the power of one could spark the Power of Us.

The Forum was a wonderful celebration of collaboration and inspiration within the health care industry. Thank you to everyone, especially all front-line workers and health care professionals, who continue to stretch themselves personally and professionally, working tirelessly to make a difference through extraordinary circumstances.

Christine (Chris) Bent currently serves as TRUST President and is Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Prime Therapeutics. Chris was named one of the Notable Heroes of Health Care for 2020 by Twin Cities Business.