About Us

The Illinois Rural Health Association (IRHA) was organized in 1989 to improve access to health care for rural Illinoisans.  

The association is comprised of individual, organizational and student members interested in providing leadership on rural health issues.  IRHA's diverse constituency includes individuals concerned with rural health, health care providers and administrators from both private and public settings, state and local government leaders, researchers, educators, consumer groups, consultants, insurance and employer representatives.

IRHA maintains strong relationships with the Illinois Department of Public Health Center for Rural Health and other state, public and private associations that advocate for improved rural health. IRHA also is a member of the National Rural Association State Association Council.


Goals of the IRHA

  • Advocate for the health interests of rural residents in public and private policy issues.
  • Foster public and private partnerships to improve rural health.
  • Support the work of other health interest groups in their efforts to improve rural health.
  • Provide educational resources for rural health professionals and students.
  • Enhance public awareness of rural health issues.
  • Provide networking opportunities for people interested in rural health.
  • Strengthen the capacity of the organization to support its mission.

Current IRHA Board

Executive Board

Robin Rose – President
Gibson Area Hospital

Kim Sanders – President-Elect
SIU Center for Rural Health & Social Services

Terri Agin – Treasurer
Illinois Health Connect

Julie Aman - Secretary
Anders CPA & Advisors

Hana Hinkle – Past President
National Center for Rural Health Professions

Ken Ryan
IL State Medical Society

Cynthia Wise
Mid IL Medical Care Associates

Board of Directors 


Susan Bence
Lt. Governor's Office for Rural Affairs

Vicki Brown, Student Member
Healthcare Management, SIU-Carbondale 

Cecilia Canizela Student Member
Pre-Med, Illinois State University

Bill Dart
Acting Chief, IDPH Center for Rural Health

Julie Casper
IDPH Center for Rural Health

Curt Jibben
Mason County Health Department

Melissa Henriksen - Secretary
Northern Illinois University - Center for Governmental Studies

Sandra Larson, PhD
Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine & Science

Michael McNear, MD
Jersey Community Hospital

Amanda Minor
Douglas County Health Department

Amy Rademaker
Carle Center for Rural Health & Farm Safety  
Abby Radcliffe
Illinois Hospital Association

Kim Wilkerson, Dean
Rend Lake College


Through the years, many individuals representing agencies and organizations interested in improving the status of rural health and the availability of health care throughout Illinois have given tirelessly of their time and talents to assure the success of IRHA.  We recognize these contributions from the Charter Members and Past Presidents, without whom there would be no IRHA.  

Charter Members:

Nola Gramm
Al Grant
Cliff Hickam
George O'Neill
Jack Taylor  
Past Presidents:
1990-1992 Jack Taylor
1992-1993 Nola Gramm
1993-1994 George O’Neill
1994-1995 Pat Schou
1995-1996 Joanne Chezem
1996-1997 Barbara Dallas
1997-1998 Mary Catherine Ring
1998-1999 Paul Galligos
1999-2000 Richard Wansley
2000-2001 John Lopes
2001-2002 John Record
2002-2004 Greg Chance
2004-2006 Sheldon Keyser
2006-2007 Pat Bickoff
2007-2009 Roger Holloway
2009-2011 Mary Jane Clark
2011-2013 Mark Stevens 
2013-2014 Janet Collopy 
2014-2015 Ken Ryan 
2015-2016 Randy Mullin  
2016-2017 Hana Hinkle 

   © 2015  Illinois Rural Health Association
   9211 Waterfall Glen Blvd. | Darien, Illinois 60561

   Phone: 217-280-0206  | Fax: 630-908-7311 |  E-mail: mvaughn@springnet1.com

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software