DALE E. Espich, 2015 Margaret S. Gulick Humanitarian of the Year recipient. (Courtesy Photos)

Memorial Healthcare recognized outstanding individuals for their efforts in support of the services and programs offered by the Owosso-based 150-bed, not-for-profit health care facility, during its annual Holiday Reception Thursday evening, Dec. 3, at the Owosso Country Club.

Dale Espich, an active Memorial Healthcare Board of Trustees member, was recognized as the 2015 Margaret S. Gulick Humanitarian of the Year award recipient, however, due to work requirements, he was unable to attend.

This award was established in 1988 as a means of recognizing individuals who have provided outstanding service to Memorial Healthcare. Nominees must have been a member of the Memorial Healthcare family for a significant period of time and demonstrated positive leadership skills including participation in committees and programs for the development of Memorial Healthcare and the community. Each year, the recipient is selected by a committee of former Humanitarians, physicians, trustees, executives and directors.

According to his nomination, “Dale has served as a member of the Board of Trustees since 2009, always demonstrating positive leadership skills while serving as its Board Chair and currently serving as Vice Chair. He is a member of many committees and participates in nearly all activities of Memorial Healthcare. He has been a community activist for more than 25 years. Dale was one of the Founders of Get Fit, was the first Council Director for Girls on the Run in Shiawassee County, was a charter member of the Get Fit initiative in Shiawassee County, charter developer of Train the Trainer program for healthy lifestyles for families and past Chair of the Shiawassee YMCA.

“He has actively participated in BMI testing for kindergarten students in Shiawassee County, HIP Kids, Owosso Kiwanis Club and has served as advisory to a college fraternity. His dedication to Memorial is shown by his passion and participation in many projects. He has vast experience with mergers and acquisitions, he seeks out advice and participation from others when problem solving something he is not familiar with. He has volunteered many years of service with budget and fundraising for his local church. Dale is a true inspiration to others. He is able to identify needs in his church, his community and our hospital and seeks support and counsel to achieve successful results. He is a thoughtful and kind man who looks for opportunities to improve the health and well being of the others. He truly cares about Memorial Healthcare and the community it serves. He realizes that when Memorial Healthcare succeeds, we all win.”

Other individuals recognized during the event included: *Dr. Peter Karsten served as a Community Member of the Board of Trustees from 2011 through May 2015. He served as Secretary of the Board and was a member of the Board Executive, Finance and Bylaws Committees. Additionally, he was the Board representative on the Medical Staff Credentials Committee. Dr. Karsten resigned from the board due to a relocation and was formally recognized for his service prior to his departure.

*Dr. J. M. Vachhani retired from clinical practice after dedicating over 30 years of service to Memorial Healthcare and the community as a member of the Active Medical Staff. He served as a Medical Staff Representative on the Board of Trustees from 2004 through September 2015 and during that time served on numerous Board and Medical Staff Committees. He also served as Chief of Medical Staff in 1998 and 1999.

*Meredith Keating has been on the Auxiliary for more than 25 years, serving as President three times, most recently from June 2014 to May 2015. Under Meredith’s leadership, the Auxiliary fulfilled a $27,000 commitment for facility improvements to the Surgical Waiting Area; made and fulfilled a $25,000 commitment for Behavioral Health Unit furniture and a $19,000 commitment for surgical equipment; and made a $30,000 commitment for facility improvements to the labor and delivery rooms in the Family Birth Place. Meredith has also assisted as a volunteer with other Foundation fundraising events. “We are thankful for her dedicated leadership of the Auxiliary and as an advocate for Memorial Healthcare and the Auxiliary in the community,” it was emphasized.

*Jane Idle began service on the Foundation Board of Directors in 1998. She has served as a co-chair of the Go Green/Go Blue Fundraiser and as a longtime chairperson of the Annual Support Committee. Jane has been a loyal contributor to the Foundation and she has been honored as a Patron in recognition of her generous personal giving. Jane will conclude her 18-year history of service as a Foundation Board member at the conclusion of her term in January 2016. “We are grateful for her service on the board and as an advocate for Memorial Healthcare and the Foundation in the community,” it was noted.

Two members of the Memorial Healthcare Medical Staff, who discontinued clinical practice this year, were also recognized during the event.

*Dr. Gregg Landick ended his clinical practice earlier this year due to health reasons. He was employed with Memorial Medical Associates from 1999 to 2014. He served multiple Shiawassee County communities as a primary care provider, including Durand, Ovid, Chesaning and Perry. Throughout his career, he had many patients follow him in order to remain under his care. He was a calm, pleasant presence both to his patients and his co-workers. Dr. Landick was Chairman of the Department of Office Based Medicine from 2001 to 2003. During that same period he served on the Medical Executive Committee. He also served on the Credentials Committee in 2002, 2003, 2010 and 2014.

*Dr. Harry Wright practiced ophthalmology in the community from July 1979 through October 2015. He served as Chairman of the Department of Surgery from 2001 to 2004. During that same period, he served on the Medical Executive Committee and the Credentials Committee. Dr. Wright received his law degree during this time and is also an avid runner. He and his wife, Lisa, are planning to retire to Marco Island in Florida. “He provided excellent complete eye care to our community for an amazing 36 years,” it was stated.

Dale Espich Named 2015 Margaret S. Gulick Humanitarian of Year was last modified: December 9th, 2015 by Karen Elford