Todd Forkel to resign as CEO of Avera St. Luke’s & Avera St. Mary’s hospitals

ABERDEEN, S.D.(Press Release) – Todd Forkel, Regional President and CEO of Avera St. Luke’s Hospital in Aberdeen, S.D., and CEO of Avera St. Mary’s Hospital in Pierre, S.D., has announced plans to leave Avera to become the new CEO of Altru Health System based in Grand Forks, N.D.

“Todd has been such a positive leadership force in our organization and a personal friend and mentor to so many people at Avera. We will miss him greatly yet we celebrate with him as he has been given an exciting opportunity to lead a health system,” said Bob Sutton, President and CEO of Avera Health.

After serving in the U.S. Air Force, Forkel joined Avera 23 years ago as a radiology technician at the very same hospital where he was born – Avera St. Luke’s. He progressed to Director of Radiology and went on to develop his leadership skills in other positions. In 2008, he returned to Avera as Vice President of Clinics in the Aberdeen region. In 2011, he was named Regional President and CEO of Avera St. Luke’s and in 2015, he began serving as CEO for Avera St. Mary’s as well.

As the top leader of Avera regions based in both Aberdeen and Pierre, Forkel helped set the course for shared leadership functions across multiple regions, and he’s helped to make this a development opportunity for other leaders as well.

A champion for high quality health care, Forkel led during a time when both Avera St. Luke’s and Avera St. Mary’s have earned 5-Star ratings from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and were named as Top 100 and Top 20 Rural and Community Hospitals nationwide.

“This was a difficult decision for me because Avera has been such an important part of my life and career,” Forkel said. “I am truly grateful for all the opportunities I have had with Avera to serve and grow as a professional.”

Forkel will be with Avera until Feb. 20. Avera will announce an interim leadership plan in the near future.