Your Path, Our Journey

By Allison O’Connor, TRUST President

Each person’s path in life is different. Personal and professional decisions change our direction – sometimes subtly, sometimes significantly. And although we each travel on our unique paths, we’re also part of a collective journey to support women leaders in health care. We celebrate our individual roles and collective experiences with this year’s Forum theme, “Leading the Way: Your Path, Our Journey.”

In the coming weeks, we’ll be sharing more information about the Forum held on October 12 at the University of Minnesota’s McNamara Alumni Center. We’re excited to announce soon our keynote, recipients of the TRUST Awards and the recipient of our 21st Century Pinnacle Leader award, one of our highest honors. Please save the date and join us on October 12! The event will be smaller this year by design to allow for more personal connections to be made. Be sure to get your tickets early.

In the meantime, I wanted to expand on paths and journeys. A path is defined by “the course or direction in which a person or thing is moving,” while a journey is the “act of traveling from one place to another.”

Here’s another way to think about our professional paths and journeys. When you establish your goals, you’re setting your destination and using a plan as your map. Your strategy for achieving your goals is your path, and various tactics are the turns you take along the way. All of these pieces together are your journey. All elements of a journey need to come together to be successful.

There’s a quote from an unknown author that resonates with our solo and collective paths and journeys.

Everyone has their own path. Walk yours with integrity and wish all others peace on their journey. When your paths merge, rejoice for their presence in your life. When the paths are separated, return to the wholeness of yourself, give thanks for the footprints left on your soul, and embrace the time to journey on your own.

There have been numerous times in my life when my professional track merged with the paths of others, and I embraced the shared journey. My time with the Women’s Health Leadership TRUST has intertwined my route with many remarkable women and men because we share some of the same journeys. Our Forum theme, “Leading the Way: Your Path, Our Journey,” demonstrates your distinctive role as an individual is just as important as our collective experience.

When we walk alone and come together, we build the elements of a successful journey. For the TRUST, that means creating an inclusive, diverse and collaborative network that advocates, inspires and offers insights to women leaders in health care. It means creating new possibilities for all women. Embrace your unique paths and enjoy life’s journey!

Allison O’Connor serves as the 2022 TRUST President and is Vice President of Strategy Execution at Lifespark. Allison has also held roles as Board Chair with the American College of Healthcare Executives Minnesota Chapter and Minnesota Rural Health Association, Vice-Chair with Cedar Riverside People’s Center and is a current Board member with American Red Cross North Central Blood Services North Region.