Press Release

Sister Laura Wolf to Lead AHA's Section for Health Care Systems

Sister Laura Wolf, OSF, JD/MHA, president and chief executive officer of Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity HealthCare Ministry, Inc., in Manitowoc, Wis., is the 2006 chair of the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Section for Health Care Systems, a constituency section representing health systems across the country that provide guidance in AHA’s policy development and governance. 

During her one-year term as chair, Sister Laura and the 24-person governing council will work with the AHA to identify ways to define and focus AHA policy, advocacy, public policy issues and member service strategies regarding health care systems.

Sister Laura has served the congregation of the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity in its health ministry for the past 24 years. Following her achieving a joint degree in Law and Health Administration from St. Louis University in 1980 (JD/MHA) and an administrative residency at Sacred Heart Medical Center, Spokane, Wash., Sister Laura began her health care career as the assistant vice president of quality assurance at Good Samaritan Medical Center, Zanesville, Ohio.  She was later promoted to vice president of support services for the same organization and also served as in-house legal counsel.  Through those positions Sister Laura gained a thorough understanding of health care institutional management and operations. 

In May of 1985, Sister Laura was asked by her congregation to originate a health system for the hospitals and nursing homes under their sponsorship.  By October 1985, the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity HealthCare Ministry was incorporated, and for the past 20 years Sister Laura has served as its president.  The Franciscan HealthCare Ministry as it is commonly called is made up of health care services and institutions in rural communities in Ohio, Nebraska and Wisconsin. 

Sister Laura is on the board of directors of the Catholic Health Association of the United States and of Wisconsin, serves on the National Coalition on Catholic Health Care Ministry and is a member of the Diocese of Green Bay, Wis., Independent Review Board.   She is also a member of various legal organizations including the Ohio State Bar Association, the State Bar of Wisconsin and the American Health Lawyers Association.  A member of the Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity for 38 years, she is also actively involved in congregational and church organizations and projects as well as family and civic activities.

Larry Mullins, DHA, president and chief executive officer, Samaritan Health Services in Corvallis, Ore., is the chair-elect and will assume the role of chair in 2007.  Dr. Glenn Steele, Jr., president and chief executive officer, Geisinger Health System in Danville, Pa., is the immediate past chair.  Current AHA Board member, John G. O’Brien, president and chief executive officer, UMass Memorial Health Care, Inc., is the 2006 Board Liaison to the Council.

Elected to the council for three-year terms on the Governing Council are: Frank Alvarez, president and chief executive officer, TMC Healthcare, Tucson, Ariz.; Michael Covert, president and chief executive officer, Palomar Pomerado Health, San Diego, Calif.; Thomas Driskill, Jr., president and chief executive officer, Hawaii Health Systems Corp., Honolulu, Hawaii; William Gracey, chief operating officer, LifePoint Hospitals, Brentwood, Tenn.; J. Thomas Jones, president and chief executive officer, W. Va. United Health System, Fairmont, W. Va.; David Lincoln, president and chief executive officer, Covenant Health Systems, Lexington, Mass.; Nancy Schlichting, president and chief executive officer, Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, Mich.; and Anthony Tersigni, president and chief executive officer, Ascension Health, St. Louis, Mo.

About the AHA

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit the AHA website at

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