We Treat Customers Better
Our mission—empowering our customers to achieve their best health—exemplifies our commitment to look at healthcare differently. But even more importantly, we look at you, the customer, differently. We believe that healthcare can be better and this is what really drives us. At North Memorial Health, you have a voice and we listen. You have health goals and we have the knowledge and the tools to help you get there. Even when illness or injury steals your strength, we will not let it steal your power. We believe when you’re engaged and informed, you will have better health and a better life.
Empowering Our Customers
North Memorial Health started as a single hospital in 1954 by a doctor that wanted to do things differently—do things better. Today, that inventive spirit continues throughout our network of 25 specialty and primary care clinics, urgent and emergency care offerings, medical transportation services and two hospitals—North Memorial Health Hospital and Maple Grove Hospital—not to mention the 350+ care providers and 6,000+ team members that are dedicated to delivering a more connected experience for our customers. By providing better experiences, where you are in control, you can live your most vibrant life. We know good health is at the root of our well-being, but can a healthcare system make healthcare…healthier? We say yes.See Our Locations
Dr. J. Kevin Croston was appointed Chief Executive Officer for North Memorial Health in April 2015. He is a general surgeon, specializing in traumatic injury. Dr. Croston joined North Memorial Health in 1993. Prior to his appointment as CEO, he served as the President of Population Health & Ambulatory Services and served as Chief Medical Officer, overseeing North Memorial Health’s physician organization.
Trevor Sawallish serves as Chief Operating Officer, overseeing North Memorial Health’s operations, including its hospitals, clinics and ambulance services, and the technology and infrastructure that support each of these areas. Sawallish has over 20 years of experience in the healthcare industry, with previous executive leadership roles at Dean Clinic, Children’s Minnesota, and SSM Health.
Dr. Ogland joined North Memorial Health in 2018 as Chief Medical Officer, Ambulatory Services and became Chief Medical Officer for the system in May 2019. She provides clinical leadership and management for North Memorial Health providers, chairs the North Collaborative Care board and sits on the Medical Executive Committees at North Memorial Health Hospital and Maple Grove Hospital. Prior to joining North Memorial Health, Dr. Ogland served as vice president, Clinical Primary Care, at Ascension Medical Group Wisconsin and as vice president, Medical Affairs, at SSM Health/Dean Medical Group.
Bjorn Gunnerud joined North Memorial Health as Chief Experience and Marketing Officer in 2021 and became North Memorial Health’s first Chief Strategy Officer in 2023. Gunnerud oversees the development and execution of North Memorial Health’s operational plan, aligning departments throughout the system with a focus on delivering unmatched experiences, expanding equitable care, and driving North’s growth and reputation in the communities in which it operates and beyond. He is an accomplished marketer, brand builder and business strategist with 20+ years elevating global, regional and start-up companies. Active in the community, he serves on the board of YMCA of the North.
Dawn Backlund was named Chief Compliance Officer at North Memorial Health in 2020. She provides strategic direction and oversight of our compliance, privacy and risk management programs to ensure compliance with federal and state laws and regulations, internal policies and standards of conduct. Backlund joined North Memorial Health in 2018 as director, Coding, CDI and HIM. Prior to that, she served as system director, Corporate Compliance for Fairview Health Services.
Briar joined North Memorial Health in 2020 as General Counsel after spending 20+ years as a health lawyer at Fredrikson & Byron. She directs legal strategy for the health care system. She is a graduate of Drake University and University of Pennsylvania Law School.
Steve joined North Memorial Health in 2020 as General Counsel after spending 30+ years as a health lawyer at Fredrikson & Byron. He directs legal strategy for the health care system. He is a graduate of Michigan State University and Northwestern University School of Law.
As Vice President of Medical Affairs, Dr. Doorenbos leads and supports clinicians and team members to ensure the highest level of care is delivered at Maple Grove Hospital. Dr. Doorenbos joined the Maple Grove Hospital leadership team in 2015, but was part of the hospital medical staff since the hospital opened in 2009. Prior to joining the leadership team, Dr. Doorenbos served as a full time family medicine physician for over 20 years.
Dr. Larry Hegland joined North Memorial Health Hospital as Vice President of Medical Affairs in April 2021. Dr. Hegland brings more than 20 years of physician leadership experience, including a unique background in the development and implementation of Physician Advisor programs focused on training and leadership mentoring. He also brings experience in organizational culture and innovation, performance and quality improvement, and patient, physician and staff engagement.
Jessi Kingston joined North Memorial Health in 2020 as System Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. Kingston’s experience includes several leadership roles where she was a champion for change. Most recently, Kingston was the Director of Human Rights & Equal Economic Opportunity for the City of St. Paul, where she helped transform the organizational culture by breaking down discriminatory barriers and improving racial consciousness. Her experience has also led her to write and speak about equity and human rights issues around the United States. Kingston holds a MBA and is a board member of several community organizations that focus on diversity, culture and inclusion.
Brad Newton joined North Memorial Health as Chief Information Officer in 2020. He provides expertise in strategy, planning and financial management to help continue to innovate and evolve the use of technology. Prior to North Memorial Health, Newton served as vice president of Information Technology Administration and Enterprise Applications at WellStar Health System in Atlanta, Georgia. Newton attended Duke University as an undergraduate and received his MBA from the University of North Carolina.
Mike Opat joined North Memorial Health in 2022 as its first Chief Business Development and Community Relations Officer. Opat leads system business development and outreach, as well as all aspects of government relations and strategic community partnerships and sponsorships. Before joining North Memorial Health, Opat spent 28 years as a Hennepin County Commissioner, leading a number of transformational projects spanning governance for Hennepin Healthcare, building and financing Target Field and transportation projects like the Bottineau Light Rail.
Scott Sampey joined North Memorial Health in 2020 as Vice President and Chief of Ambulance Services. Scott provides executive leadership for 911 and critical care ground transport, the Air Care aeromedical program, community paramedicine, and the services that support these programs—all of which work together to deliver care to customers across Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin. Prior to joining North Memorial Health, Scott served in a variety of EMS, nursing, air medical, and hospital leadership roles across the country.
Kent Spaulding joined North Memorial Health in 2014 as Vice President of Development and Chief Development Officer. Spaulding leads fundraising, strategy and outreach efforts of North Memorial Health Foundation as well as volunteer services for the system. Prior to joining North Memorial Health, Spaulding served in outreach and fundraising leadership roles at Minnesota State, Mankato, the University of Minnesota and Ridgeview Medical Center.
Wendy joined Maple Grove Hospital in April of 2017. As Vice President of Patient Care and Chief Nursing Officer, she oversees operations and clinical care at Maple Grove Hospital. Prior to joining Maple Grove Hospital, Ulferts served as the Associate Administrator – Chief Nursing Officer at Rice Memorial Hospital in Willmar, MN.
Board of Directors
Mike Steinhauser, Chair
J. Kevin Croston, MD, CEO
Andrew Houlton, MD
Robert Prentiss, Jr
At North Memorial Health, we’re on a mission to change healthcare. We’re delivering unmatched customer service and empowering our customers throughout the Twin Cities to achieve their best health.
Interested in getting to know us better or joining our team?