The North Central Community Services Board named Gary Olsen NCHC’s first executive director last week.
Olsen will serve in the role of director, the first to hold that title following a reorganization of the tri-county medical organization. He takes over for Mort McBain, who had served as interim director since last year.
Olsen formerly served as Rothschild’s first administrator and the village’s board approved his hiring in 2017. He last year was hired as finance director of the organization.
North Central Health Care is a quasi-governmental agency that provides human services for Marathon, Langlade and Lincoln counties in lieu of a human services department.
Gary Olsen will take on NCHC challenges
Olsen takes over at a difficult time for the organization, which has faced several years of operational shortfalls in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The organization had a $3.9 million shortfall in 2020, for instance. And, the organization has faced criticism from community and county leaders over shutting down Community Corner Clubhouse, a popular refuge for those suffering from mental health issues.
But Olsen brings a lot of experience to the role. Olsen served in governmental agencies for 28 years, including working for Langlade County for 16 years as finance director. And he’s familiar with the organization having worked for the better part of 2022 as NCHC’s finance director.
“While serving as NCHC’s Finance Director, Mr. Olsen has quickly shown his ability to navigate a complex organization and effectively collaborate with leadership in Marathon, Lincoln and Langlade Counties,” states NCCSP Board Chair, Kurt Gibbs. “His background in government leadership and finance provides a solid foundation that will continue to propel the organization forward as NCHC continues to navigate the unprecedented impacts of Covid-19 and enter the final phases of renovations for the Wausau Campus in 2023. We are pleased to have Gary lead this dedicated team of employees at NCHC.”
NCHC underwent a reorganization of its governance structure following CEO Michael Loy’s departure. Under the new structure, NCHC’s leader is treated more like a department head with more direct reporting to the counties. The leader is considered a director not a CEO.
That makes Olsen the first to serve in the role of executive director. McBain served as interim director since the reorganization.