Longtime SCMH board members step down

LAKE CITY — The Stewart Memorial Community Hospital Board of Directors gratefully acknowledges the contributions of longtime board members Chuck Schmitt, of Lohrville, and Heather McClue, of Lake City, who are both stepping down after 12 year terms.

In 2007, Schmitt joined the board because he was getting ready to retire from one or two other volunteer boards he had been serving.

“When I first joined the hospital board, I had come from a financial background, so I really hammered on those questions,” Schmitt said. “After awhile I began to see the people side of it and how important the quality of the services offered at SMCH are.”

Schmitt, who served as board chair from 2011 to 2015, was part of the transition from Mercy Hospital to the UnityPoint affiliation.

“That was a big move in its time,” Schmitt said. “That has been a good partnership for SMCH.”

Schmitt said his way of thinking about the hospital has been changed by his board service.

“If I came to the hospital before, it was generally to see my doctor because of a cold or to the ER to have something stitched up,” Schmitt said. “I didn’t see everything going on in the background that make everything happen. It’s a very complex business, and it is a business. Now I definitely see that.”

Schmitt said he’s proud of the hospital.

“It’s amazing how many great people are working here,” Schmitt said. “You walk in the door, everybody says, ‘hi.’ The culture is fantastic, it’s very welcoming and compassionate. These people know what they’re doing. We have top-notch people who really care about this organization.”

McClue also began her service on the board in 2007, becoming board secretary the following year. She joined the board when she and her husband, Tom McClue, were approached. She said, “I knew Tom had enough stuff going on that it was not going to be an option for him, and I just thought it was a good way to give back to the community and be involved. I knew very little about the hospital, so I thought it would be interesting.”

McClue said her tenure on the board has helped her grow.

“You have to be able to contribute and communicate with other people,” she said. “You learn a lot about the hiring process when you interview CEOs. You have to get out of your comfort zone and constantly learn about the changes in health care.”

She added “Leaving the board is easy when you know it’s in great hands. I’m confident the hospital is headed in the right direction. I’m excited to continue to watch the changes and growth of SMCH from the outside.”