Allina Hospitals & Clinics’ CEO receives ‘Community Builder’ award
MINNEAPOLIS 12/02/2005--More than 400 people gathered last night on one of the last unfinished floors of Allina Commons to recognize Dick Pettingill, Allina’s President & CEO as a ‘community builder.’
The award was presented by Urban Ventures, a community-based organization on Lake Street, as part of their annual dinner in celebration of the renewal of the old Sears building, now called Midtown Exchange, and their work to improve people’s lives.
Minneapolis Mayor RT Rybak helped to present the award. “Dick recognized that doing business means doing good. This project would not have happened if Dick would not have led Allina through this decision,” he said.
The vast former warehouse in which the event was held may have been stark, but among attendees, the energy and passion for making the neighborhoods around Chicago Avenue and Lake Street better was anything but.
Urban Ventures President and CEO, Art Erickson, said that renewal of the Sears building had been a long-term priority for his organization. “To renew a neighborhood, we must build the economic infrastructure.” Erickson described the neighborhood as being ‘rewoven’ after a period of unraveling.
“There are many great leaders in this town who have been here a long time but wouldn’t have had the tenacity and vision that Dick did,” said Jim Ryan of Ryan Companies, the developer, underscoring the complexity of this historic project.
Accepting the award, Pettingill said he was humbled and honored. “Many people, including some of my board members, cautioned that this would be a crazy move but I was immediately struck by the opportunity,” he said. “We’re a community-based organization, committed not just to health care, but to health. We must invest not just in the patients that come through our doors, but also in the communities in which they live.”
Pettingill explained that Allina Commons belongs to Allina’s employees, who designed the space and who would be working there for decades to come and he thanked Allina’s community board members, many of whom were in attendance, for their vision.
“I’ve served community institutions for nearly 40 years and have experienced the miracles of modern medicine. However, I’ve never experienced a miracle of such proportions as the Midtown Exchange,” said Pettingill. “Although the miracle became a reality today, think about the impact this decision will have on the health and well being of the community in future generations.”
Pettingill moved into Allina Commons on Dec. 1. He was among the first of 1,800 employees who are relocating to the new headquarters on Lake Street between now and July 2006.
Urban Ventures began in January 1993. The organization helps Lake Street-area residents and businesses develop their assets and capacities in ways that help build a livable and sustainable neighborhood. These efforts include developing youth leaders, strengthening families and creating meaningful work opportunities to empower the people in the community. For more information, visit www.urbanventures.org.
Allina Hospitals & Clinics is a not-for-profit system of hospitals, clinics and other health care services, providing care throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. Allina owns and operates 11 hospitals, 65 clinics, home care and hospice services, oxygen and equipment, pharmacies, and emergency medical transportation services. Allina Hospitals & Clinics and the latest health information can be found online at www.allina.com.