The Wyandotte Health Foundation has named a veteran of the regional safety-net health system as its next leader.
The foundation board announced Thursday the hiring of Cathy Harding, who since 2007 has served as executive director of the Kansas Association for the Medically Underserved, the Primary Care Association of Kansas in Topeka.
Harding will take over as CEO of the foundation in early July, according to a news release. She will succeed Bill Epperheimer, who is retiring after nearly 17 years as CEO of the foundation.
According to the foundation, Harding’s work experience also includes leadership positions with the Ozark Tri-County Health Care Consortium in Neosho, Mo., and the Flint Hills Community Health Center in Emporia, Kan.
In her current position, Harding has worked with health clinics, local health departments, the Legislature, and health foundations across the state.
Board members were impressed with Harding’s “strong passion for making a difference in the lives of others,” Chairman Leon Logan said in the release. “The board feels that her talents will be a great asset to the Wyandotte County community.”
Harding said her selection “is a great honor, as well as a great responsibility that I do not take lightly.”
The Wyandotte Health Foundation was established in 1997 with proceeds from the sale of Bethany Medical Center to Columbia HCA. It has approximately $40 million in assets and has awarded more than $30 million to organizations providing health care services to uninsured and underinsured residents of Wyandotte County.
The foundation recently announced the largest grant in its history, a $1 million contribution to a proposed healthy campus near downtown Kansas City, Kan.
Mike Sherry is a health reporter for the Hale Center for Journalism at KCPT.