Foundation Board of Directors

Providence Alaska Foundation is a non-profit organization supporting the Mission of Providence Health & Services Alaska. Board members are key constituents with the Foundation in the work across the community.

Scott Wellmann, M.D., Chair
Alaska Children's Heart Center, Pediatric Cardiologist

Dr. Scott Wellmann is the founder of the Alaska Children's Heart Center, LLC. Dr. Wellmann grew up on a farm in a small town in Northwest Ohio before receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from the University of Notre Dame in 1988. He graduated from the University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine in 1992 and stayed in Cincinnati to complete a residency in Pediatrics and Fellowship in Pediatric Cardiology at the renowned Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. When he completed his Fellowship in 1998, he moved to Alaska to begin practice. Dr. Wellmann enjoys all aspects of his specialty. He is accomplished and experienced with diagnostic and interventional procedures in the Cardiac Cath Lab, including closure of congenital heart defects through device placement. A strong advocate for the continued advancement of the cardiac health of all Alaskans, Dr. Wellmann sits on the Board of Directors of Alaska Chapter of the American Heart Association.
parsons_martin Martin Parsons, Vice Chair
Contingency & Response Planning Manager, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co.

Martin Parsons is a lifelong Alaskan, born and raised in Cordova. He has worked for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline system for the past 26 years. He serves as the Chairman of the Board for The Eyak Corporation an Alaska Native Village Corporation in the Prince William Sound area, and is the Co-chair for the Alaska Native Advisory Board for Alyeska Pipeline. Martin has lived in Valdez for the past 26 years with his wife Deanna and their three children. Martin and his wife have recently moved to Anchorage area. He feels strongly about the mission of the providence foundation and has had firsthand experience with the professionalism, care and support of the NICU.
Stacy Barnes, Past Chair
Governmental Relations & Public Affairs Director, Alaska Housing Finance Corp

As a member of AHFC’s senior management, Stacy is responsible for communications with audiences ranging from government officials, investors, public housing clients, employees to media. She has proven herself a trusted and strategic partner at the corporation where profits are invested into the state and support the poor and vulnerable. Nearly 10 years of her childhood were spent in Nome where her mother worked as a nurse. She earned degrees from the University of Alaska Anchorage and Alaska Pacific University. In 2014 she was named one of Alaska’s “Top Forty Under 40.” She also volunteers in both the NICU Kuddle Korp and the No One Dies Alone programs at Providence.

Jason Criqui, Treasurer
Senior Vice President, Northrim Bank

Jason has been with Northrim Bank since 2014 and has nearly 20 years of experience in banking throughout Alaska and the lower 48. He holds a Bachelor’s degree from Emporia State University in Interdisciplinary Studies with an emphasis in Biology and Business. Criqui is an active member of the Resource Development Council for Alaska, the Alaska Support Industry Alliance and the Providence Alaska Foundation.

Mark Kneedler, Secretary
Principal/President, Architects Alaska

Mark Kneedler is a professional architect and the current President of Architects Alaska. He was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri and earned his architecture degree at the University of Kansas. In 1981 Mark and his wife Dixie moved to Anchorage and quickly developed roots within the community. Mark has dedicated his career to specializing in healthcare design, which has afforded him the honor of working continuously with Providence Health & Services since 1981. He has played a vital role in the design of many major healthcare projects throughout the state, including the Providence Cancer Center, the first of its kind in Alaska, and the Children’s Hospital at Providence. Working closely with the good people of Providence, Mark has developed a deep respect and appreciation for their hard work and dedication in supporting the mission and values of Providence.
Pat Branson
Senior Citizens of Kodiak, Inc., Executive Director

Since the mid-1980s, Pat has been making Kodiak a great city in Alaska. First, as owner of Kodiak Marketing & Consulting. Then through her role for the past 19 years as executive director of Senior Citizens of Kodiak, Inc. She has a passion for seniors in her community and advocates for their health through her work with Alaska Commission on Aging and the National Institute of Senior Centers. 

But her care doesn’t stop with seniors. She engages in local community government through her service as a Kodiak Island Borough Assembly member and currently as mayor. As well as serving on the board of the Kodiak Chamber of Commerce.
We are blessed to have Pat’s knowledge as part of our Providence Kodiak Island and Providence Alaska Foundation boards. She received her education at Illinois State University and completed her graduate work in communications at University of Wisconsin.

Suzanne Carte-Cocroft
Providence Alaska Foundation, President

A lifelong Alaskan, Ms. CarteĢ-Cocroft was born and raised in Palmer and joined Providence in 2001. As president of Providence Alaska Foundation, Suzanne is responsible for philanthropic and grants development and operations for Providence in Alaska. Prior to joining Providence, Suzanne worked in the telecommunication’s industry in various operations and marketing leadership roles. She earned her Bachelors of Business Administration and Management from Alaska Pacific University and has maintained her CFRE (Certified Fund Raising Executive) accreditation since 2007. Suzanne has served her community through Rotary, the YWCA board of Directors and The Foraker Group operations board, and is honored to be a previous recipient of Alaska’s Top Forty Under 40.

Kate Dugan
Valdez Communications Manager, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co.
Kate Dugan is the Valdez Communications Manager for Alyeska Pipeline Service Company. She is responsible for the company’s public and community relations in Prince William Sound and manages Alyeska’s philanthropy budget for the area. She also coordinates the Prince William Sound Traveling Health Fair, which brings health and wellness providers and programming to the villages of Tatitlek and Chenega every fall.

Before her current role, Kate worked on public health issues for many years as a policy coordinator for the Alaska Native Health Board, a legislative aide in the Alaska State Legislature, and as the government relations manager for the American Lung Association of Alaska. She has served on the board of Valdez’s local public radio station, KCHU, and participates in several local events. She and her husband live in the mountains outside of Valdez with their daughter, and enjoy all the exploration and adventure that the area provides.
Preston Simmons, Corporate Member
Chief Executive Officer, PH&SA

Preston Simmons, DSc., MHA, FACHE is the Chief Executive Officer of Providence Health and Services Alaska beginning in January of 2019. Before moving into his role as CEO, he was Chief Operating and Administrative Officer. Prior to coming to Alaska in January of 2018, he has held the roles of Chief Executive Officer, Interim, for the Providence Health and Services Western Washington Market and Regional Chief Executive Officer for the NW Washington Region of Providence. He joined Providence in 2007.

Preston has a Doctorate in Health Services from the University of Alabama, Birmingham and a Master's Degree in Health Administration from the University of Washington. He is a Clinical Professor in the University of Washington Department of Health Services, School of Public Health and Community Medicine. He is also a Fellow with the American College of Healthcare Executives and is active in many professional and community organizations including the Alaska Economic Development Council, University of Washington Bothell Board of Advisors and First Choice Health Network.
Rick Fox
Chief Executive Officer, Fairweather, LLC

Rick’s journey in Alaska since the 80s with Shell has taken him to many amazing rural locations in Alaska such as the Bering Sea, the Beaufort Sea and Chukchi Sea. These experiences prepared him for his career leading Shell’s exploration drilling program in Alaska’s offshore. Rick retired from Shell August 31, 2010, after 35 years of service and is now responsible for Edison Chouest Offshore Alaska and is managing partner and CEO for the Fairweather companies.

Rick is married to Dr. Cyndie Fox, MD, with Providence Alaska Anesthesia Medical Group. They have 3 grown children: Melanie, Roger and Rabun. Rick and Cyndie have been active in the community of Alaska through board service beyond Providence Alaska Foundation including: Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Alaska, United Way of Anchorage, Anchorage Parks Foundation, and many more.
Denali Kemppel
General Counsel, Hilcorp Alaska, LLC

Denali Kemppel is the General Counsel of Hilcorp Alaska, LLC. Hilcorp is the largest private oil and gas company in the United States. Born and raised in Anchorage, Denali graduated with honors from Dartmouth College. After college, she worked for US Senator Ted Stevens before starting law school at Duke University. Denali started her legal career at Ropes & Gray in Boston where she advised public and private companies on mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings, and other corporate matters. She previously served as EVP, General Counsel for Arctic Slope Regional Corporation and as the Chief Operating Officer for McKinley Capital Management LLC. Denali, her husband, and their children enjoy running and cross-country skiing.
Mardella Lower
Retired Nurse Manager, Providence Alaska Medical Center

Mardella Lower has been a resident of Anchorage Alaska since 1968. She and her husband, Clyde, came to Alaska for 6 months and fell in love with the great outdoors. Born and raised in Aberdeen, Washington. Mardella is a retired Registered Nurse with 47 years in health care experience at Saint Joseph Nursing School in Tacoma, Washington, eventually earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Science from Alaska Pacific University. 

With 45 years at Providence Alaska Medical Center she served as Head Nurse, Nursing Resource Specialist, Staffing Manager for Nursing, Magnet Program Coordinator, and Director of Nursing Resources. Early in her career she was certified as an Oncology Nurse and was actively involved in the development of oncology services at Providence. She provided management and over sight to Nursing Resource Pool, Transport and Life Team, Vascular Access Team, and Providence Early Assessment Team. She has been the recipient of the Leadership Excellence Award, and system wide Leadership Excellence Crystal Glacier Award. 

Professional ties with Providence began in 1968 and the commitment to the Sisters of Providence Mission continues today as a Providence Associate. Golf is a passion and serving on the board for the Wacky Women’s Golf association, volunteering with the American Diabetes Association, and national and international travel keep her retirement time active.

Jill McLeod
Partner, Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Born and raised in Alaska, Jill is committed to wellness and to all Alaskans having access to superior health care. Jill is a partner at Dorsey & Whitney LLP and has more than 15 years of U.S. and international legal experience, including extensive work in oil and gas, telecommunications, transportation, commercial transactions, mergers and acquisitions, regulatory compliance, environmental, employment and real estate law. Jill has lived abroad and traveled extensively, but now lives in Anchorage with her husband, Ken. They have one college aged son, Conner. Jill and Ken love to entertain and cook gourmet meals. As a result, Jill is also an avid triathlete and runner, and enjoys all Alaskan activities.
Shannon Metrokin
Special Education Teacher, Anchorage School District

Shannon Metrokin is a proud lifelong Alaskan, raised in Fairbanks and Anchorage. She has spent her entire career dedicated to students with special needs in various capacities. Currently, she is supervising special education teachers for the Anchorage School District. Shannon received her undergraduate degree from Willamette University and a Masters of Science in Behavior Disorders and Special Education from the University of Oregon. Shannon is committed to supporting healthy communities to promote healthy and engaged students. Shannon resides in Anchorage with her husband and two sons. As a family, time spent outdoors on the water or in the mountains is valued, promoted and enjoyed. She is honored to serve on the Providence Alaska Foundation Board.
V. Rae (Prewitt)

V Rae has lived in Alaska for twenty four years and is artist in residence at the Alaska SeaLife Center and Alaska Zoo. Her Fur, Fin & Feather portfolio of wildlife expressions can be found in galleries and gift shops in Alaska, Hawaii, the Continental U.S. and walls of the Providence NICU, Cancer Center and Visit Anchorage. V paints from a studio/gallery in Anchorage frequented by many of her models and clients from around the worl‹1, and many of her paintings are drawn from personal wildlife encounters boating Alaska coastal waters from Prince William Sound to Southeast Alaska. Each year V dedicates a portion of her work to the local non—profit organizations that protect, sustain and enrich life in Alaska. She is an active member of the Alaska Watercolor Society and Alaska community of artists. But it was the many years of exemplary care given her father by the Providence Alaska Medical Center that motivates V to offer in return time and resources to the Providence Alaska Foundation.
Kate Slyker
Chief Marketing Officer, GCI

Kate leads the marketing efforts for the Alaska-born-and-raised business which has grown from an Anchorage start-up more than 35 years ago to a successful publicly traded company. Prior to her joining GCI, Kate was the Executive Vice President of Spawn Ideas, a full-service advertising agency also located in Anchorage, Alaska. She received her BS in marketing and English from the Carroll School of Management at Boston College. Kate has a deep level of commitment to the nonprofit community through her service on several boards, the Alaska Community Foundation, Covenant House and Providence Alaska Foundation. She is a member of the University of Alaska Athletics Advisory Board, is the past Chair for the NCAA GCI Great Alaska Shootout and sits on a special task force for the Mayor’s office. She has completed her board terms with YWCA of Anchorage, Catholic Social Services and the Alaska Chapter of the American Marketing Association. Kate’s commitment to the community is no surprise, given the depth of her Alaska roots. She is a fourth-generation, lifelong Alaskan, whose family is known for its active civic involvement in the state. If not at the office, you can find Kate enjoying the outside with her husband and two young sons – whether they’re running on the trails, skiing in the mountains, cheering on the basketball courts or floating the Kenai River.

Jana Smith
Jana Smith, Principal, Vice President, Alaska Manager
Parker, Smith & Feek, Inc.

Jana Smith is a principal and the manager of our Alaska office. In addition to her management role, she works with clients to create dynamic and responsive insurance and risk management programs. She is an innovative professional, having been instrumental in the creation and implementation of worldwide property and casualty insurance programs. Jana and her husband came to Alaska in 1984 when Doug was stationed at Elmendorf AFB. They have one daughter, Alexandria, who is currently a student at Colorado School of Mines.
In addition to holding a B.A. in business administration, Jana has completed several educational designations in the insurance and risk management industry. She is active in the local community and previously served for several years on the Breast Cancer Focus board and currently serves on the board of Junior Achievement of Alaska, Inc.
Paul Swalling
Owner/Senior Project Manager, Swalling General Contractors

Paul Swalling is a lifelong Alaskan and the third generation to lead the family business. Paul was raised in the Alaska construction industry and worked his way up the ranks on challenging projects across the state. A graduate of Gonzaga University, he has 18 years of project management experience for buildings, bridges, docks, and other heavy civil projects.

 woodward_lori_125 Lori Woodward
Vice President, Strategy and Commercial, ConocoPhillips Alaska

Lori started her career with ConocoPhillips in 1991, working in upstream finance in Ponca City, Oklahoma. She held a variety of positions in Ponca City and Houston, Texas before being appointed controller for ConocoPhillips in Alaska in 2004. In 2009, Woodward returned to Houston to manage the company’s internal financial reporting team in the corporate controllers’ group. She moved on to work as the internal audit manager for ConocoPhillips’ Upstream and commercial businesses. Woodward transferred to Calgary, Alberta in 2012 to become vice president, Finance with ConocoPhillips Canada. In 2017 Woodward assumed the role of vice president, Finance and Shared Services with responsibility for ConocoPhillips Canada’s Finance, Information Technology, Reserves and Frontiers teams. In the fall of 2018, Woodward returned to Anchorage, Alaska to become vice president, Strategy & Commercial. Woodward graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting from Southwestern Oklahoma State University in 1991.



Kathy Anderson
April 2002 to April 2009


James Blasingame
April 1996 to April 2002

April 2003 to April 2009
Barbara Cash
March 2006 to December 2012

Maurice Coyle, MD
April 1990 to April 1996


Jean Craciun
December 2005 to December 2011


Johnny Gibbons
November 2005 to December 2011


Max Hodel
Founding Member 1983


William (Bill) Hopper
April 2000 to April 2007


Betsy Lawer
April 1994 to April 2000


Loren Lounsbury
April 1994 to April 2000


Clark Rush
2002 to 2010