MISSION

To improve the health of people within our region through effective use of information and collaboration to establish our region as a community of health excellence through a comprehensive focus on population health, patient experience, cost of care, and provider well-being

WHO WE ARE

The Michigan Health Improvement Alliance, Inc. (MiHIA) is a 501(c)3 focused on achieving sustainable system change and improved health outcomes of people within a 14-county region in central Michigan. MiHIA focuses on improving health within our region through a comprehensive focus on population health, patient experience and cost of care. For well over a decade, MiHIA has functioned as an integrator or backbone organization to guide the health ecosystem at a regional level, accelerate competitive advantage, foster long-term sustainability and enhance the existing efforts of its valued partners.

HISTORY

MiHIA has been involved in leading complex change since it was founded in 2007. The concept of creating a multi-stakeholder collaborative was a novel one for the region and required building goodwill, gaining trust, articulating the value proposition and establishing a unifying process for all stakeholders.

In our early years, MiHIA was awarded and completed a planning grant to be a regional component of the State Health Information Exchange plan. MiHIA’s plan and their request for an implementation grant were approved but unfortunately could not be funded due to budget shortfalls at the state and a new direction for Michigan Health Information Network. 

The geographic area served by MiHIA is comprised of 14 counties in the central Michigan region. They include Arenac, Bay, Clare, Gladwin, Gratiot, Huron, Iosco, Isabella, Midland, Ogemaw, Roscommon, Saginaw, Sanilac and Tuscola counties. This region is one of nine medical trading areas defined by the State of Michigan Department of Community Health. The geography includes a population of about 800,000 people.

The MiHIA region is centrally located in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, and consists mainly of farmland, with a few moderately-sized cities in Midland, Bay and Saginaw counties. The economy is primarily agricultural, with the vast majority of its area consisting of the fertile Saginaw Valley. The largest company headquartered in the area is The Dow Chemical Company in Midland. In Saginaw, the company with the largest number of employees is Covenant Healthcare.

The region also is home to several institutions of higher learning including Central Michigan University, Saginaw Valley State University, Delta Community College and Northwood University. Another unique feature is the inclusion of an Indian Reservation as well as distributed members of the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe throughout the other counties. While the region includes state-of-the-art health care facilities and global corporations, its urban and rural areas also include sizeable economically depressed and medically underserved populations.

TRIPLE AIM FRAMEWORK

The Triple Aim framework is the compass to optimize health and health care. MiHIA’s regional approach is based on a core belief that solutions to national problems – like healthcare – can be found and designed at local levels.  Achieving the quadruple aim in healthcare is no easy task. It takes high levels of regional coordination and commitment across sectors. By implementing initiatives, programs, and technology aimed at improving each domain, our region can expect to see positive impact – improvements in staff engagement, cost efficiencies, and higher levels of patient satisfaction.

STAFF

MiHIA committees, workgroups, and project teams to ensure success. At every level, each is committed to fully support the vision and mission of MiHIA with a dedication to its success.

  • Courtney Soule
    Courtney Soule
  • Kristen McDonald Rivet
    Kristen McDonald Rivet
  • Andrea Foster
    Andrea Foster
  • Jameca Patrick-Singleton
    Jameca Patrick-Singleton
  • Heidi Tracy
    Heidi Tracy
    Chief Executive Officer
    MiHIA
  • Mark Kato
    Mark Kato
  • Daryn Papenfuse
    Daryn Papenfuse
  • Tina Swanton
    Tina Swanton

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

The MiHIA Board of Directors is composed of a group of individuals who are committed to fully support the vision and mission of MiHIA with dedication to its success. This senior level Board of Directors serves as the primary authority of MiHIA, and represents a broad spectrum of stakeholders, including hospital systems, independent providers, universities, public and mental health organizations, consumers, health plans and employers This group of 15-21 individuals is responsible for the management oversight of affairs and business of the organization. The Board is also responsible for ensuring progress and achievement of the mission, assuring effective oversight of the Chief Executive Officer, staff, contracts, budget and operations of the organization. The Board may also adopt rules and regulations for the conduct of their meetings and the management of the organization as they may deem proper, consistent with organizational by-laws and the laws of the state of Michigan.

Courtney Soule

Courtney Soule is the Communications Leader for the Michigan Health Improvement Alliance (MiHIA), the Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance and their co-led initiative THRIVE (Transforming Health Regionally in a Vibrant Economy).

Prior to joining MiHIA, the Alliance and THRIVE, Courtney served as the Managing Editor of Catalyst Midland and development manager of Issue Media Group, Catalyst’s parent company. She also brings over 15 years of experience working in public affairs, government affairs and public policy and corporate strategic development for Dow. She is a graduate of Northwood University, Summa Cum Laude and holds a BBA in Marketing and Business Management.

Soule is a passionate community supporter, volunteer and advocate. A lifelong resident of the Great Lakes Bay Region, she lives in Midland with her two dogs and recently started a public effort sharing her journey managing multiple sclerosis (MS) through diet and lifestyle.

Kristen McDonald Rivet

Kristen McDonald Rivet serves as Vice President of Michigan Future, Inc and a Strategic Advisor to MiHIA/THRIVE.  She is the former CEO/President of Greater Midland Inc, a network of centers connecting all residents in Midland County through wellness & recreation, education, youth development and basic needs.  Prior to her work in Midland, McDonald served as the Vice President of Program and Policy for The Skillman Foundation in Detroit. In this role, she directed strategy for all of the Foundation’s program work in citywide education reform, place-based neighborhood revitalization, youth development systems building and public policy agendas addressing institutional inequity issues.

Previously, McDonald has served in multiple leadership roles developing public policies and systems to improve the lives of children and families including work in the Michigan Departments of Education and Human Services. She has worked extensively in early childhood education policy and was one of the chief architects of the Early Childhood Investment Corporation (ECIC) and Great Start, Michigan’s system of education and care for children from birth to kindergarten.  McDonald was appointed to the Executive Committee of the ECIC by Governor Rick Snyder in July 2017 and currently serves as the Board Chair. In 2016, she was named an Annie E. Casey Children and Families Fellow, joining a prestigious network of leaders across the country with the vision, drive and ability to make changes that benefit large numbers of children and families.

McDonald and her husband are the proud parents and stepparents of six beautiful children and reside in Bay City, MI.

Andrea Foster

Andrea Foster is the executive coordinator for MiHIA and helps providing support for various MiHIA committees, staff efforts and operational needs. Foster comes to us from The Little Forks Conservancy in Midland, Michigan, where she worked for over six years as the director of Programs and Partnerships. A passionate youth and outdoor advocate, she is the creator of the Conservancy’s Nature/Nurture Program, an environmental education program for under-served youth and OUTdoors Together, a hiking group for LGBTQ individuals and allies.

Foster is an active community volunteer and advocate, serving on several local committee efforts including the Midland Young Professionals Steering Committee, and the Midland Area Community Foundation’s Cultural Awareness Coalition. She also volunteers as a mentor at the Midland County Juvenile Care Center, and is a regular motivational speaker for teens spanning diverse topics.

Jameca Patrick-Singleton

Jameca Patrick Singleton is the director of Children, Families and Education for MiHIA which includes the major focus and serving as the project leader for the Maternal Child Health and Well-being Initiative (MCHWI).

Previously she worked as the lead consultant for Granting Success, helping to build the capacity of non-profits and socially active businesses.

She is also the former chief recovery officer for the City of Flint. In this role she worked to maximize the involvement of Flint residents in the recovery and rebuilding of the Flint water infrastructure and recovery support services.

Prior to the City of Flint, she worked as the director of Coalition Building Programs for Metro Community Development and the Coordinator for the Flint/Genesee Continuum of Care. She has also worked as an adjunct faculty member for University of Michigan- Flint and Baker College where she taught Social Work and Human Service disciplines.

Being a teenaged mother fueled her passion to try and change her community for the better. That passion, as well as her love for people has resulted in Jameca spending her career working in the community.

She studied social work both at Mott Community College and the University of Michigan. She holds a Masters of Social Work degree with a concentration in Organizational and Community Practice from Michigan State University.

Jameca sits on several boards and committees working towards creating and sustaining stable communities, including serving as the current chairperson of the City of Flint Human Relations Commission.

She is a lifelong resident of the City of Flint, a proud mother of two and grandmother to seven children.

Heidi Tracy
MiHIA

Heidi Tracy joined the Michigan Health Improvement Alliance (MiHIA) in December 2021 as the organization’s CEO. A strategic-thinking executive with a proven record of accomplishment in higher education, nonprofits, and community development, Tracy is dedicated to continuous community improvement by developing programs and securing support for organizations serving underrepresented groups. 

Prior to MiHIA, Tracy served as the vice president for Advancement at Central Michigan, Texas Woman’s and Otterbein universities and assistant vice president for Individual Giving at Carnegie Mellon University. Tracy began her career in higher education at Ohio University where she served as the assistant dean for Development, assistant director for Major Gifts and finally as executive director for Major Gifts.

Tracy’s service to community well-being extends beyond higher education. She has worked on a number of local and statewide elections and covered the 1988 Republican and Democratic conventions and subsequent presidential inauguration as a journalist.

As a private consultant, she has worked with numerous nonprofits on board relations and development, fundraising, finance, organizational leadership, marketing and communication, program development, public policy and legislative affairs. She has helped organizations raise more than $200 million throughout her career.

A native of Ohio, Tracy earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ohio University and completed Harvard University’s Institute for Educational Management Program.

Mark Kato

Dr. Mark Kato, DHA is a program leader for MiHIA/THRIVE, and has over a decade of experience in healthcare quality improvement, data analytics, and financial analysis.

Mark leads the Achieving the Right Medications for Health (ARM4Health) Project. The initiative implements a focused, coordinated action plan to increase education on appropriate prescribing, deprescribing and adverse drug events, and implement policies and care team models which improve these practices.  Mark comes to MiHIA from UnitedHealthcare where he led a Quality Improvement Analytics team and prior to that he was the Director of Performance Improvement at MidMichigan Health.

Mark obtained his Doctorate of Healthcare Administration from Central Michigan University and Masters in Business Administration from East Carolina University.  He resides in Bay City with his wife and three children.

Daryn Papenfuse

Daryn is responsible for the dynamic nature of the MiHIA Dashboard. In this role he updates information and creates community calendars and pages to share upcoming events, facilitates partner hubs and otherwise keeps the dashboard running smoothly so partners can access important data. Daryn is also responsible for data collection, mining and analysis. “I find tremendous satisfaction in being part of the MiHIA team. I really believe in the mission behind our work and am excited to have been part of the launch of some amazing initiatives!”

Daryn currently volunteers as a co-lead for the SBIRT strategy group within the MiHIA Opioid Strategy and also volunteers on the Chippewa River as a surveyor and restorer.

Daryn obtained both his undergraduate degree and his Master of Public Health at Central Michigan University and currently resides in Mt. Pleasant.

Tina Swanton

Tina coordinates several programs contributing to general population health: the In-Person Diabetes Prevention Program, the Virtual Diabetes Prevention Program (VDPP), Kurbo, and Choosing Wisely. In addition to handling the daily coordination of programs, Tina also works as a community relations staff member. Tina says, “I am very energized to be working with community partners to make strides to impact and improve the community.”

In her free time, Tina loves to be outdoors, to travel, and to otherwise be active.

Her undergraduate degree is from Central Michigan University and her master’s degree is from the University of Kentucky. She resides in Saginaw with her husband and young children.