Sunday, November 15, 2015

Daniel L. Andrus, Fire Chief for the City of Concord, New Hampshire

Are you a leader? How much do you trust your subordinates? Enough to let them strap you to a litter and let them lower you on a rope over the side of a 30 story sky scraper? Daniel Andrus, the Fire Chief for the City of Concord, New Hampshire, let his subordinates do exactly that. In today’s podcast, Dan tells the story of his 37 year career as a firefighter. Dan has a long list of credentials including master’s degrees in public administration and economics. He is, as he puts it, a continual learner. In addition to his role as fire chief, he serves on the boards of a number of non-profit organizations. This was one of the most educational podcasts for me that I have done so far because I knew very little about the organization and operations of the fire service. The fire service is a critical community resource that every health care executive should have an understanding of, so I was very pleased Dan took the time to share his story and I hope it is useful to health care executives as they think about emergency preparedness.

Links to the Podcast:

Podcast Outline

Time Topic
0:01:46 a family tradition of firefighting, early career with Salt Lake City Fire Department
0:07:55 formal education
0:11:57 firefighter/paramedic
0:15:47 early leadership - promoted to fire lieutenant
0:19:05 public information officer to Fire Chief for Salt Lake City
0:24:28 becoming a manager - fire captain
0:29:02 Battalion Chief, Emergency Management and Technical Services Division, Salt Lake City
0:33:47 Fire Marshal, Salt Lake City - 2002 Winter Olympics
0:38:16 Battalion Chief, Operations Bureau, Salt Lake City
0:40:47 Deputy Fire Chief, Administrative Bureau (including Airport Bureau and EMS)
                   Board of Community Health Center
                   pursuing an MPA, MS Econ
0:53:28 Coming to Concord
0:56:59 the job of Fire Chief, Concord Fire Department
1:05:14 interfacing with the direct health care and public health systems
1:07:33 involvement in community organizations - knowing your customers
1:12:41 innovative health care delivery with EMS assets - Mobile Integrative Health Care
1:15:14 organizational culture
1:17:45 role of women and minorities in firefighting
1:20:27 why do people join and why do people stay?
1:22:44 leadership
1:28:40 advice about pursuing a career in firefighting and EMS

Links to Topics Discussed:

Fire Department, Concord, NH

Fire Department, Salt Lake City, UT

New Hampshire Fire Academy

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Sunday, November 1, 2015

Jill Gravink, Founder and Executive Director of Northeast Passage

Today’s guest is Jill Gravink, the Founder and Executive Director of Northeast Passage. Jill founded Northeast Passage in 1990 as a means of bringing Recreational Therapy out of the inpatient setting and into the community. Northeast Passage works with people who have physical and mental disabilities, using sport and leisure activities to improve the quality of the client’s life and to, as they say at Northeast Passage, “Live beyond disability.” Northeast Passage works with everyone from children to combat veterans, treating more than 3,000 clients last year. In this podcast Jill tells the story of how Northeast Passage came to be, and what it took to grow the organization from just her operating out of the trunk of her car to where it is today. We also discuss how organizations like Northeast Passage are well poised to contribute to the future of health care as the industry shifts to outcomes and value-based reimbursement, and conclude with a discussion about leadership.

Links to the Podcast:

Podcast Outline

Educational background
Defining recreational therapy
Art of recreational therapy, about NEP
History of recreational therapy
Getting certified in recreational therapy
First job after graduation
Use of aquatics in physical therapy
Starting NEP and initial vision
NEP’s first clients
NEP initial funding and sponsors
Coming back to UNH to teach
NEP’s early days, lessons learned, partnerships
Defining “universal design”
Growth of NEP in clients and funding, future NEP sustainability
Beginning to charge clients fees for service, NEP financial difficulties
Development of recreational therapy at NEP, associated grants
Learning to manage an organization
Merging NEP with UNH
Defining and using “strength-based” in therapy
Importance of integrating therapy within the community
Role group dynamics play in therapy
Receiving veterans’ adaptive sports grant, addressing veterans’ therapy needs
Long term relationship with Veterans’ Affairs after grant, current work with VA
Broader healthcare reimbursement trends away from FFS towards outcome and value-based payments
Change in role as executive director with UNH merger
The future of NEP
Changes in strategy and vision of NEP over time
NEP’s current organizational structure, working with UNH students
Changes in personal leadership style over time, lessons learned
How to find the right people for leadership positions
Philosophy on leadership and its challenges and opportunities
Importance of organizational culture
Early career mentors, importance of mentorship
Advice for people who want to address social needs
Advice for people interested in a career in recreational therapy

Topics Discussed:

Northeast Passage

American Thereapeutic Recreation Association

Adaptive Sports

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Thanks to Sameer Panesar for production support.