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Emerging Rural Leader

This award is presented to a new professional who has demonstrated tremendous promise for and commitment to improving the health of rural North Dakota residents. Nominees must have five years or less experience serving in a rural community.


  • 2018 – Joshua C. Ranum, MD, West River Health Services, Hettinger
  • 2017 – Ben Bucher, FNP-BC, MBA, CEO, Towner County Medical Center, Cando
  • 2016 – Nikki Johnson, Cooperstown Medical Center and Griggs County Care Center, Cooperstown
  • 2015 – Tina Schwartz, BSBA, Northwood Deaconess Health Center, Northwood
  • 2014 – Ivan Mitchell, MPA, MHA, Chief Executive Officer, Towner County Medical Center, Cando