About the Health Leader Forge

What is the Health Leader Forge?

The Health Leader Forge is a production of the University of New Hampshire's College of Health and Human Services, and the Northern New England Association of Healthcare Executives (NNEAHE). It is an interview-based podcast meant to introduce leaders in the health and health care field to early careerists and students of health management. It is produced to be a free educational resource for the health management field. The podcast web site is: http://healthleaderforge.org

Each podcast is an in-depth, biographical interview with a senior health leader. The interview traces the leader’s career journey from her/his college education up until the leader’s present position. The interview then turns to the mission of the leader’s current organization and the leader’s current position. The podcast concludes with a discussion of leadership style, leadership lessons, and recommendations to early careerists. Interviews typically range from 60-90 minutes.

The podcast has been well received by students. Student comments include:

“It felt like I was sitting right next to the person that the Health Leader Forge was about! It felt very personal and was very engaging. I loved listening to their reactions and the tone in their voice because it wouldn’t be the same to read about that person online somewhere. I could tell they were enthusiastic and loved what they were doing and that made me even more excited to listen.”
“I liked hearing about how each health care leader got to where they are today and how many of them started out exactly where I am right now.”
“Getting to hear a firsthand account of someone in the healthcare field and how they worked their way up and it really gave me a lot of great lessons on how to be a great leader.”

How does the interview work?

Guests are asked to submit a CV or resume to the host a few weeks prior to the interview. The host then creates an interview plan based on the guest’s experiences. The interview plan is the primary list of questions the host intends to ask the guest, though the interview is best thought of as “semi-structured” since the guest’s answers may bring up additional questions or lines of discussion. The guest is provided the interview plan at least 24 hours in advance of the interview for her/his review. Any questions or topics the guest is uncomfortable with will be removed from the interview.

Following the interview, the host edits the interview to remove any awkward pauses as well as clean-up of the usual verbal “ahs and ums” as much as possible. The guest is then sent a link to the final product for review and approval. If the guest finds any passage uncomfortable after the fact, the host will remove that passage.

After the guest approves the interview, the recording is released to the public and can be downloaded from a number of podcast aggregator sites such as iTunes, Stitcher, and SoundCloud.

The host


The host, Mark Bonica, Ph.D., is a retired Army Medical Service Corps officer who spent his military career working in healthcare management and health management education. He now teaches in the Department of Health Management and Policy at the University of New Hampshire. You can reach him at mark.bonica@unh.edu .

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