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When Sister Gretchen Kunz stepped in as President and CEO of the St. Joseph Health System, she planned to stay in the job for only three years. Now, 20 years later, she's still here, but not for long. Sister Gretchen is retiring to dedicate more time to the St. Joseph Foundation.
"This has been a wonderful position, but I think it's a good time because I think the team is well experienced, very talented, we have a leader on board that will carry everything forward," said Sister Gretchen.
And it's the St. Joseph administration and the progress it has made that she said she's most proud of.
She feels her expertise will be useful at the Foundation. She's eager to help further St. Joseph's mission, a mission of finding the resources to care for all of those in need.
"I think that I can add another good dimension because of the experiences I've had over the past gosh, 34 to 40 years," said Sister Gretchen.
One of those experiences was opening a sorely needed patient bed tower in Bryan.
"Thank you for all those who dreamed this dream. To the physicians who said as early as seven years ago please sister, we need more beds, we need to build," said Sister Gretchen at the bed tower groundbreaking.
"Healthcare in the country I would say is having some of the toughest times it has ever had. Some folks would say, and I guess that I agree, that it's in a crisis. So we think our mission is really important and worth it and every person is worth it, every single person," said Sister Gretchen.
But, Sister Gretchen believes the future is full of hope and opportunity. And if the road gets rough, she'll still be around because it's hard to kick the habit of serving St. Joseph.
The process to replace Sister Gretchen has begun, but no word yet on who might take take her place.