Hayward Area Memorial Hospital welcome new board members
Hayward Area Memorial Hospital and Water’s Edge are proud to welcome three new people to serve on its board of directors: Kylah Eckes, Stacey McKinney, and John Will.
“Kylah, Stacey and John represent different backgrounds and communities within our service area. Their unique experiences, community perspective and leadership skills will be great assets to our board,” says Luke Beirl, CEO of Hayward Area Memorial Hospital & Water’s Edge. “We are pleased they joined our team and we look forward to their support in helping us continue to live our mission to improve the health and wellbeing of the greater Hayward lakes region.”
They join a 13-member board which includes two members of hospital leadership, three community physicians, and eight regional community members.
Kylah Eckes became involved with service to HAMH by serving on the organization’s Patient and Family Advisory Council (PFAC). Born and raised in Hayward, Kylah is proud of her deep family roots in the community. She and her husband Zac have three children who join family’s Hayward legacy as fifth-generation community members.
Kylah joins the board with broad experience in education, serving as a Hayward High School guidance counselor for the past ten years. Prior to that, she was the school counselor at Lac Courte Ojibwe School. She also has experience on a variety of school and community fundraising committees and boards. Kylah and Zac are also small business owners, joining the family plumbing business 18 years ago.
Kylah has a special understanding of the healthcare industry. “Our son, Cole, went through a major medical situation when he was a baby. From our closest friends and family to strangers, this small town rallied around our family and supported us in a way we could have never imagined,” says Eckes. “Being a part of the hospital’s board of directors is a way for me to give back and be a part of something bigger that strives to provide exceptional care to area residents and visitors.”
When not working, Kylah can be found attending her children’s numerous sporting competitions, volunteering at area events, or enjoying the outdoors with family and friends. She enjoys time on the water and bike trails, soon hoping to learn how to golf in order to keep up with her family.
Representing the Cable community, Stacey McKinney is joining the board with significant volunteer experience and board service. Co-owner and broker of McKinney Realty with her husband Scott, Stacey has served on both the Wisconsin REALTORS Association and REALTORS Association of Northwestern Wisconsin, as well local boards for the Chequamegon Children’s Theater, Cable Natural History Museum and Northwoods Preschool. Her board service has provided many opportunities for committee service related to public policy, strategic planning, advocacy, professional standards and political action.
Stacey has lived in the area for over 20 years and is busy raising her three kids. Her oldest will graduate from University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire this spring and her other two children attend Drummond High School and are active in music, theater and sports.
“I decided to join the board because healthcare has a profound impact on our community. Many of our clients sell because they feel the need to move closer to healthcare facilities and services in larger areas,” says McKinney. “I look forward to helping the hospital understand the needs of the community, increasing my knowledge about the services offered and contributing to the vision and growth of the organization.”
Stacey also brings a special perspective to the board as a cancer survivor. “In July of 2016, I was diagnosed with breast cancer so I can share the cancer patient’s perspective,” says McKinney. “My cancer journey provides a unique insight into what patients and families experience when facing a serious healthcare condition.”
In her free time, Stacey enjoys dressage, reading, running, paddle boarding, gardening and reading. She also enjoys traveling with her family and spending time at the lake.
John Will joins the board with extensive leadership experience and board service. He has served as president of Northwood Technical College since 2014, and has worked for the organization for 15 years. He has served the Wisconsin Technical College System Presidents’ Association, West Central Wisconsin Workforce Development Board and University of Wisconsin Stout CTE advisory board. This work will support HAMHWE’s focus to partner with all education levels to ensure a skilled and qualified workforce for the future.
He has strong connections to the area, growing up in Ladysmith and living in Birchwood for the past 17 years. John and his wife Kimberly have three children. Their oldest daughter is attending Northwood Tech and transferring to UW-Stout in the fall, their second daughter will graduate from Rice Lake High School in May and plans to attend Chippewa Valley Technical College, and their son is completing 7th grade at Birchwood School.
“As an area resident, I have an interest in ensuring our communities have access to high-quality healthcare,” says Will. “Hayward Area Memorial Hospital and Water’s Edge are great community assets and in my role at Northwood Technical College, I look forward to better understanding challenges related to workforce development.”
John enjoys hunting, fishing and reading and he has recently picked up golf as a new hobby.
Special appreciation is extended to outgoing Board Members. Barb Koerpel-Duffy served on the board for twenty-one years, Dr. Brent Kelley with 20 years of service, and James Miller who served for 10 years. “Their visionary guidance and leadership are greatly appreciated by our organization and their commitment to the community is realized as they played a significant role in our continued growth to serve our region,” says Beirl.