Cogwheel Archive

Rotary Cogwheel | May 3, 2012

May 2, 2012

Today’s Program| Confessions of an Itinerant Academic, Bob Craig’s Classification (Estenson)

Birthdays: Geralyn Sheehan (5/2), Colleen VanBlarcom (5/3), Rick Estenson (5/4).

Next Week: Leo Fanton, Our Exchange Student fro Brazil (Quinnell)

Last Week:
If ever Northfield Hospital & Clinics decides to carve its own Mount Rushmore, Mary Quinn Crow will have a place on it.

Mary retired at the end of April after a long and distinguished career. During her 32-years at Northfield Hospital & Clinics, she helped guide the organization’s transformation from a homey, neighborhood hospital to a progressive regional medical destination.

She began as a night nurse on the delivery ward, one of only four nurses in the building during that shift. She served as director of the maternity ward for 10 years, before making the leap in 1994 to administration, where she served as Vice President of Patient Care and Chief Operating Officer for the next 18.

Reviewing the early years of her career, we learned why there are two stools in the delivery room (The physician and the wobbly fathers couldn’t share.) and how hospital staff improvised when a helicopter needed the parking lot for landing space.

Mary said local physicians had a great influence on the growth and development of the hospital. She mentioned Gretchen Ehresmann, MD, the community’s first female physician, for her work on the obstetrics department; David Larson, MD, for his work on emergency services; and Jim Evans, MD, and Bob Shannon, MD, for their strong leadership throughout.

When Brad Wille and Bob Shepley committed to an orthopedic practice in Northfield, things really changed, she said. They were the first full-time surgeons in town, and hospital services needed to expand to support their work.

Despite serving in many different capacities throughout her career, Mary never lost her passion for patient care. She is still a nurse, through and through.

“The reason I stayed here (for 32 years) is because we treat our community,” she said. “When patients come through the door, they’re not strangers with a diagnosis. They are our neighbors.”

Mini Classification

Mark Henke, president and CEO of Northfield Hospital & Clinics, was born in Rochester, raised in Stewartville, attended St. Olaf College and received an MBA from Northern Illinois University. He has worked in healthcare for 27 years, first with Mayo Clinic and then Sanford Health System before coming to Northfield in 2010. He and his wife, Joyce, have five children ages 12 to 25

Guests:  Nalongue Cogan and Martina Berg (Cogan), Suzy Rook (Hoschouer), Alan Anderson (Wolf) and our exchange students.

Scholarship Enhancement: Bob Craig, the Itinerant Academic

President Bierman, President-Elect Fenton and Clarice Grabau are off to the International Rotary Convention in Thailand. Wish them well.

Vicki Dilley suffered a dislocated finger while whitewater rafting in Brazil as part of the GSE trip. Her spirits remain high. The trip extends through the middle of May. You can follow her on her blog at

Jim Pokorney invited members to submit nominations for the Marston Headley Service Above Self Award. Nomination forms will be available today. Submissions are due by the close of business on May 10.

Charlie Cogan reported that the garage sale organized and promoted by hospital colleagues of his wife, Nalongue, netted more than $3,000 for the Children’s Hospital in Togo.

The club sponsored three Northfield High School students – Steven Taylor, Elizabeth Pritchard and Annika Johnson – at Camp RYLA recently at Camp St. Croix near Hudson, Wis. Camp RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) is a five-day camp, designed to strengthen leadership skills of high school students. They will share their experience with us today.

Coming Up:

May 17 – St. Olaf College President David Anderson (Koenig)

May 24 Rob Bierman, Jane Fenton, Clarice Grabau – Returnees from Thailand – (Clarice Grabau)

May 31 – Legislative Session summary  – Senator DeKruif, Representative Woodard  (Hoschouer)