Rural Health Leadership Radio™

Over the last ten years, over 100 rural hospitals have closed their doors. Roughly one in three rural hospitals have been identified as “at risk.” If there was ever a need for strong leadership, that time is now. RHLR’s mission is to provide a forum to have conversations with rural health leaders to discuss and share ideas about what is working, what is not working, lessons learned, success stories, strategies, things to avoid and anything else you want to talk and hear about. RHLR provides a voice for rural health. The only investment is your time, and our goal is to make sure you receive a huge return on your investment. For more information, visit or e-mail
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Rural Health Leadership Radio™


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Now displaying: September, 2016
Sep 27, 2016

Ryan Kelly is a Mississippi native and Executive Director of the Mississippi Rural Health Association. He previously served as Chief Advancement Office for William Carey University and Director of External Relations for The University of Southern Mississippi College of Health.

In today’s conversation, Ryan provides an update on the status of rural hospitals in Mississippi, and what he has to say may surprise you.

Ryan earned a bachelor’s of science with honors from The University of Southern Mississippi in 2005 and a master’s of science with honors from Mississippi College in 2007. He is a member of the Area Development Partnership’s Leadership Pinebelt, the Mississippi Economic Council’s Blueprint Mississippi committee, the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and the Mississippi Society of Association Executives.

In addition to professional activities, Ryan also serves as a deacon at Temple Baptist Church, an advisory board member for The Children’s Center for Communication and Development and the United Way of Southeast Mississippi, The Gideon’s International, Pi Kappa Phi Alumni Association, and most recently as chair of the Southern Miss College of Health Dean’s Council. He has also served as the chair of the Mississippi Health Summit over the past four years.

Sep 20, 2016

Liz Monk, the Director of Care and Coordination at Munson Healthcare Grayling Hospital in Grayling, Michigan. Munson Healthcare Grayling is part of a small health system consisting of a 71 bed community hospital, a long-term care facility, and three rural health clinics that serve a five county area in Northern-Lower Michigan.

Liz received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Michigan State University and went on to gain invaluable nursing experience in the emergency department, in case management and physician performance and improvement. Prior to her nursing career, Liz served as an aero-medical technician at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base and later as an aero-space physiology officer at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia. As a military nurse, in addition to traditional bedside nursing, Liz was able to run projects, practices and operations, giving her a unique nursing experience.

Liz’s expertise includes readmissions, performance improvement and innovation. Today, she works to empower employees at Munson Healthcare Grayling Hospital to boost innovation for the benefit of the community.

Sep 13, 2016

Cody Mullen is a doctoral candidate, serving as the Network Development Coordinator for the Indiana Rural Health Association.  Cody has helped facilitate the development of a remote patient monitoring/health coaching program to help lower the cost and improve quality of care for individuals with a chronic condition.  In addition, he supports the research and evaluation activities of IRHA.  Cody shares some of the progressive measures the Indiana Rural Health Association has assisted its members implement, particularly with treating chronic illness.

Cody earned his BS from Purdue University in Interdisciplinary Science with a focus on healthcare engineering and statistics and is currently a doctoral candidate in Health Policy and Management at the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health.  His research interests include quality of care and access to care for vulnerable populations, especially citizens of rural America and individuals with an intellectual/developmental disability.  Cody is also an adjunct faculty member at Ivy Tech Community College in Lafayette and an associate instructor for the Fairbanks School of Public Health at IUPUI.  Cody is a past NRHA Fellow.

Sep 6, 2016

Dr. Steve Barnett has been the President & CEO at McKenzie Health System in Sandusky, MI, since 2008.  During this time Steve has shifted the culture of the organization such that they now embrace change.  McKenzie Health System is recognized in Michigan as a Critical Access Hospital that is progressive in re-designing how healthcare can be delivered.  Steve is a Registered Respiratory Therapist, Registered Nurse, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist and has his Doctorate in Healthcare Administration.

Steve was a pioneer in establishing Accountable Care Organizations in rural health.  Together, with a handful of other rural health leaders, The National Rural Accountable Care Organization was created.