Priority Health in Grand Rapids Appoints Four New Senior Leaders

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Top: Nick Gates, Joyce Chan Russell; Bottom: Karena Weikel, Mike Jasperson // Courtesy of Priority Health
Top: Nick Gates, Joyce Chan Russell; Bottom: Karena Weikel, Mike Jasperson // Courtesy of Priority Health

Priority Health, a health system based in Grand Rapids, announced it has appointed four new senior leaders: Nick Gates, Joyce Chan Russell, Karen Weikel, and Mike Jasperson.

“We are pleased to have exceptionally talented leaders for these important positions,” says Praveen Thadani, president of Priority Health. “Our senior leadership team is focused on transforming the industry to make care and coverage better for everyone. I am energized as we head into 2022, and I am incredibly grateful for our more than 2,250 team members.”

Gates now serves as senior vice president of finance after working for the health system since 2004. In his new role, he will be responsible for Priority Health’s finance strategy and long-range planning, investments, finance operations, accounting, and auditor relationships.

Russell now serves as senior vice president of government markets. She oversees the individual, Medicare Advantage and Medicaid markets for Priority Health. Her new responsibilities include driving growth, managing profit and loss, partnering with industry and government stakeholders, and delivering on quality and operational goals.

Weikel now serves as senior vice president of analytics and chief actuary and has more than 15 years of health care leadership experience. In her new role she will lead teams who blend math, statistics, economics, technology, and business knowledge to develop analytics that improve revenue and reduce expenses, so Priority Health has affordable health plan products.

Jasperson now serves in the newly created position of senior vice president of provider network and health plan operations. He has served as the senior vice president of provider networking since March 2020 and held previous roles with Priority Health since 2016.

In the new combined role, his responsibilities include provider network development, provider operations and performance, value-based arrangements, customer service, claims, enrollment, and other key operational areas focused on ensuring exceptional experiences.

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