MINNEAPOLIS, March 31, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Children's Minnesota is pleased to announce the appointments of J. Hayes Batson, Judith Wright, Karen Benz, Lynn Freeman and Sharyl Sicoli to its Foundation board. These new board members will support Children's work in helping ensure every child in the region has access to comprehensive, high-quality, patient- and family-centered care, while providing resources for innovation so that Children's Minnesota continues to help advance care nationally.
Additionally, eight Foundation board members have chosen to renew their positions to serve a second term, including: Gary Blackford, Greg Frankenfield, Greg Goven, Matt Majka, Michael Ciresi, Michael Richards, MD, Patricia Comeford Adams and Shannon Evenstad.
"Our board members are passionate advocates for kids' health, and as we look forward to the changes 2016 will bring, we are thrilled to welcome these accomplished new members to our Foundation board," said Theresa Pesch, president, Children's Minnesota Foundation. "The new board members are each leaders in their own right, but together they will join our board and help continue advancing children's health in our region."
The new board members bring a wealth of community, business and volunteer experience to Children's Foundation board:
- Hayes Batson: Hayes Batson is chairman of Regency Beauty Institute, a leading national privately-held vocational school. Previously he was president and CEO of Regency and of Epotec, Inc., a developer and marketer of Web-based software for the behavioral health industry. During his career as a health, wellness and beauty entrepreneur, Mr. Batson has launched numerous business lines and products, working closely with major banks, private equity firms, regulators and politicians along the way. Mr. Batson has worked in corporate finance at William Blair & Company and management consulting at McKinsey & Company. He has been involved with Children's Minnesota for a number of years as a member of the organization's Governance board, where he currently serves as chairman. While serving on Children's Minnesota's Governance board Mr. Batson participated on the quality committee, and currently is on the governance and executive committees. He received his MBA from the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business and his bachelor's degree from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio.
- Judith (Judy) Wright: Judy Wright spent more than three decades as an interior designer where she owned her own firm, Judith Wright Interior Design. Over the years, Ms. Wright has been an avid community volunteer. She served the Junior League of Minneapolis for more than 40 years and also volunteered for the Hennepin County Humane Society and Children's Cancer Research Fund for a number of years, in addition to Children's Minnesota. She was an art history major at the University of Minnesota and took courses in interior design before opening her business.
- Karen Benz: Karen Benz has been a dedicated volunteer and supporter of Children's Minnesota for more than four decades. She has held leadership roles on several boards, including her position as president of Children's Hospital Association (CHA), and as CHA community annual gift chair. She was a trustee of the Children's Hospital Foundation of St. Paul and director of the Children's Foundation at its inception. She also was a founder and board member at Mounds Park Academy. Additionally, Ms. Benz served as president of George Benz & Sons., held leadership positions at Oak Hill Montessori and the Ordway Performance Center, and worked for the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Cessna Aircraft Company earlier in her career. In addition to her role on Children's Minnesota's Foundation board she also currently serves on the board of her family foundation, the Mercedes Foundation.
- Lynn Freeman: Lynn Freeman is the 2016 president of the Children's Association – Minneapolis, an organization dedicated to raising funds to support Children's Minnesota. She has been a committed supporter of Children's Minnesota for more than 25 years. Throughout her time with the Association, she has volunteered in the Storybook Gift Shop and chaired multiple Association events. In addition, Ms. Freeman also works at Children's Minnesota as a Program Assistant in the Minnesota Sudden Infant Death Center and the Family Resource Center where she provides additional support to families and patients. Previously she served as a volunteer at her children's schools and served on the Eastview High School Hockey and Lacrosse Booster Club boards.
- Sharyl Sicoli: Sharyl Sicoli is the 2016 president of the Children's Hospital Association (CHA) - St. Paul, a volunteer non-profit organization that raises funds to support programs, services and research at Children's Minnesota. She joined CHA's Lunch Bunch Guild several years ago and formally became a member of the CHA board of directors three years ago. Ms. Sicoli has been on the Hastings, Minn. Special Olympics board of directors for five years, and supports the Autism Society of Minnesota in a variety of capacities including serving as a staff nurse for the organization's summer camps. Ms. Sicoli received her nursing degree from the Sister's of Charity School of Nursing in Buffalo, N.Y. She worked as a medical surgical nurse at the Sister's of Charity Hospital and then as a traveling nurse for a number of years.
"Every child deserves access to the best health care services we can offer," said Pesch. "Because of the dedicated members of the Children's Foundation board, Children's Minnesota can continue to make the best doctors, nurses and pediatric health care specialists accessible to all."
With the new and renewing board members, the 2016 Foundation board includes the following members:
- Greg Goven, Chair
- Russell Becker, Vice chair
- Michael Richards, MD, Treasurer
- Patricia Comeford Adams
- J. Hayes Batson
- Karen Benz
- Gary Blackford
- Michael Ciresi
- Shannon Evenstad
- Greg Frankenfield
- Lynn Freeman
- Scott Gill
- Irv Kessler
- Matt Majka
- Charles Maxwell, Jr.
- David Miller
- Donna Roback
- Patrick Ryan
- Sharyl Sicoli
- Judith Wright
- Robert Bonar, Jr., Dr. H.A.
- Theresa Pesch
About Children's Minnesota
Children's Minnesota is one of the largest pediatric health systems in the United States and the only health system in Minnesota to provide care exclusively to children, from before birth through young adulthood. An independent and not-for-profit system since 1924, Children's Minnesota serves kids throughout the Upper Midwest at two free-standing hospitals, 12 primary and specialty-care clinics and six rehabilitation sites. Children's Minnesota maintains its longstanding commitment to the community to improve children's health by providing high-quality, family-centered pediatric services and advancing those efforts through research and education. This work is made possible in large part by generous philanthropic and volunteer support from individuals and organizations throughout the state and region. An award-winning health system, Children's Minnesota is regularly ranked by U.S. News & World Report as a top children's hospital and by The Leapfrog Group for quality and efficiency. Please visit childrensMN.org.
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SOURCE Children’s Minnesota