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Vulnerable: May 16-17, 2024



Term: Summer 2024

Credits: 3


Term: Summer 2024

Credits: 3

Session Recordings

MAY 16, 2024


Mary Anne Graf

President and Founder, Health Care Innovations

Mary Anne Graf is known for her passion for improving health care; her ability to connect the disparate dots of clinical care, business development, finance, and marketing; and a sense of humor and perspective.

Over three decades, Mary Anne has assisted hospitals and health systems in the US and abroad to improve quality, brand, share and margin in the foundational services of women’s and children’s care—both services which require partnering with multiple other medical and surgical specialties.

Her work often involves change, and the ability to create successful change is dependent on forging alignment with all levels of staff and providers, underwritten by her expertise in generational dynamics—particularly relevant during these chaotic times. During organization change, Mary Anne helps hospitals, health systems and staff surface common denominators that attract and energize emerging leaders and partners, helping organizations reframe vision and mission for a sound, exciting future.

As a consultant, she has personally led over 900 projects in 48 states and 10 countries, allowing her to easily adapt to very different needs, cultures and communities. Hands-on experience—early on as a nurse and primary care practitioner and later as vice president of a multihospital system—informs everything she does.

Keeping overall health system strategy in the forefront, her combined clinical, organizational change, business development and marketing backgrounds enable her to connect divergent goals and tactics, with innovative programs that speak directly to payers, patients, and providers alike. Her personal clients include hospitals and health systems from every corner of health care— from small independent rural hospitals to multinational conglomerates and everything in between.

She studied clinical care, business and leadership at the Universities of Utah, Virginia, and Notre Dame, and at Northwestern, and has served as graduate level faculty at three universities. She speaks extensively and has written two books, both published by Health Leaders Media.

Mary Anne lives outside Charlotte, NC, with her husband, Paul, a recovering attorney, and assorted fur eluting pets, which at various times included a gender indeterminate tarantula and a 24-year-old one-eyed warrior diva cat. Paul and Mary Anne have two adult sons, both Millennials, and a Gen Z grandson. She is a news junkie, and her personal interests include almost any type of music, swimming, reading, and anything Notre Dame, Irish or Japanese. With over seven million total lifetime airline miles, travel is also in the equation.

Sensory Focus

During this session, we embark on a transformative journey guided by the sense of sight and the timeless practices of watercolor painting, kintsugi, or shibori. Much like a skilled painter, we will explore how to wield vision as a brush, delicately crafting the contours of inspiration and resilience. Through the lens of these art forms, we uncover the profound lessons of adaptability, empathy, and embracing imperfection as essential elements of effective leadership. Join us as we embark on a voyage of discovery, where the canvas of leadership becomes a vibrant tapestry woven with the threads of creativity, insight, and purpose.

Session Pre-work

Ahead of the session, please spend 1-2 hours reviewing the pre-work.

E-Portfolio Inspiration

Include one of these activities in your e-portfolio.

Viewing Vulnerable Through the Corporal Works of Mercy

“The Corporal Works of Mercy are found in the teachings of Jesus and give us a model for how we should treat all others, as if they were Christ in disguise.  They “are charitable actions by which we help our neighbors in their bodily needs” (USCCA).  They respond to the basic needs of humanity as we journey together through this life.” (US Conference of Catholic Bishops)

Take a look at the painting below.  In your E-portfolio, consider adding pictures, videos, links, words, or any other expression to demonstrate your understanding of any corporal work of mercy.  Perhaps you and your family volunteered to serve a meal to those without food.  Or maybe your team collected coats during the winter to donate.  You might have a practice you’d like to document to connect acts of compassion with your identity as a Mission-centered leader. 

Pope Francis: Let us Build Living Works of Mercy

This month you may wish to expand on the learning outcomes for this session.  Let’s explore two that relate specifically to the teachings of the Catholic Church and integration into the ministry of health care. If you feel inspired, use these prompts to build your E-portfolio Vulnerable chapter.

Pope Frances, the leader of the Catholic Church, is quite known for his extraordinary compassion and care for all, especially those who are vulnerable.  He repeatedly invites the global community to act with mercy and stated that mercy “is the beating heart of the Gospel.” Pope Frances formalized this call in a Vatican document titled “The Face of Mercy,” when he declared 2015-2016 as the Holy Year of Mercy.  

In your E-portfolio, consider adding pictures, videos, links, words, or any other expression to describe where mercy has been experienced in your life.  When have you been the recipient of it?  When have you offered it?  Think of the team you lead.  When have you witnessed them offering mercy to patients or each other?  How is mercy connected to our theme of Vulnerable?

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