Board Member Spotlight
Amy Dewane, MBA, FACHE, CHIE
Vice President Care System Growth and Partnerships, HealthPartners
Amy Dewane has enjoyed the distinct opportunity to cultivate and lead the growth strategy for the HealthPartners family of care over the last six years. Her role is to create a unified and strategic point of view as she works across their integrated system to provide overall direction, critical thinking and guidance to make sound business decisions that match current organizational capabilities to the growing needs of patients and consumers today. Amy also articulates new capabilities, market geographies and consumer populations HealthPartners should be focused on as they look toward the future – and how they will approach those areas.
When and why did you join the Women’s Health Leadership TRUST?
I joined in 2016 shortly after moving here (2015) from Denver, Colorado. New to the area, Andrea Walsh and Patty Dennis recommended I join the TRUST. It was a great way to meet women in and across the industry.
What role(s) do you currently hold with the Women’s Health Leadership TRUST?
I am currently finishing up three years as chair for the Forum Committee, but I also serve on the Strategic Growth & Marketing Committee and Governance Committee. I have also led the Member Insights (Voice of the Customer) work supported by Cheryl Powers of The Research Edge in the past, and she is now leading it as an embedded area within the Strategic Growth & Marketing Committee.
Do you have a favorite TRUST memory so far?
So many great memories! I love working with the committees and Board, which are filled with smart and dedicated women. Otherwise, my favorite networking events tend to be often the New Member Breakfasts, where we have a chance to welcome and connect with new members in a more personalized way and learn what they are seeking and how we can help.
How has a mentor helped you the most?
I’ve had several mentors throughout my career. One very important mentor of mine was a leader from a former position. She offered me a promotion to a newly created role, knowing this would create a significant amount of visibility and the pressure and work that came along with it – all when I had two very young children (under 3). Unsure given the nature of the organizational politics, system v. regional travel and broadening scope beyond my expertise and knowledge base, I asked her if I really wanted the role. She immediately and confidently responded, “Yes.” At that point, it seemed ridiculous even to question my level of confidence given the confidence she had in me, so I said, “Yes.” She was my champion, saw my potential and kept me honest with myself. This has stuck with me nearly 15 years and has even made its way into my Peloton ID: Amy_YesICan.
What is the best career advice you’ve received?
I’ve received or absorbed many great pieces of advice throughout my career, but one that sticks with me as I need to refer to it when feathers get ruffled is: If you aren’t asking the hard questions, you’re not doing your job. Of course, this often makes people uncomfortable but it effectively catalyzes momentum (directly or indirectly).
What support do you need now to evolve your development as a leader?
Two things are top of my mind right now as I seek to improve and develop:
- I need to prioritize myself. As busy women, we tend to put other priorities first. The terrible thing is that we recognize it, but it is so hard to stop the cycle. When we prioritize ourselves, we say yes to living well and establishing the needed boundaries that have been erased over time.
- I also need a support system, an Authentic one. Since I’m not from the Twin Cities, it has been hard to break through established circles – personally and professionally. This is on my to-do list but again starts with me. Having someone to talk to that I can trust and understands the challenges we face is important.
How do you support other women in their leadership journey?
I give back through a great number of threads that intersect through volunteer, committee and Board work – many through the TRUST. I have also spent time mentoring other women seeking feedback, exploring new roles through informational interviews and providing virtual introductions to create an easier glide path where it makes sense. More distinctly, I think it’s important to find a champion AND lean in to the yellow zone (stretch via continual learning, self-discovery and career exploration) as women think beyond their roles today. This is a practice that should be genuinely celebrated, not filled with anxiety and self-reproach.
How do you cope with demanding aspects of your career?
During the toughest and most demanding times, I take more time for reflection and meditation, which has become increasingly convenient with the range of options on my Peloton – exercise is another way I manage through demands! I also love to be in nature with my family or, time permitting, go back to my more creative design roots and repurpose things.
All that said, the demands are real and will always be there. I have found the most helpful way to cope is to let the undercurrents pass through and redirect the energy into aspects of my life that fill my cup – I just need to do it more frequently!
What is something that not many people know about you?
I have been snowboarding for 28 years!
Who inspires you?
Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Queen Elizabeth I. They were both strong women leaders who fought for what they believed in and on their terms.