A Tribute to Joan

ImageJoan Curran was a long-time employee and leader at Gundersen Health System. She had years of experience in the lab and was a director of pharmacy and other functions during her career with the health system. Joan participated in our initial energy audit in early 2008, which uncovered dozens of potential energy conservation measures. She was also the catalyst for many of the improvements we’ve made since. 

In the early days of our Cashton, WI, wind project, Joan was leading our External Affairs department. This role placed her in various meetings with other organizations and officials on a number of issues that affected Gundersen. In this case, between 2007 and 2009, we were forging a partnership with Organic Valley and the community of Cashton on a wind project. Joan was perfect for this role as she was amiable, energetic, smart, hard-working, and a good listener. She didn’t know the first thing about power generation, power sales, or renewable energy, but what she did know was how to instill teamwork and bring people together to achieve a common goal. 

Joan never got to see this project constructed. A sudden and aggressive illness took her from us within a matter of weeks in December, 2009. Although Joan didn’t get to see the Cashton wind turbines spin, she was a key part of the success of this project and our Envision program. At the finish of the Cashton wind project’s construction, the Envision team mounted a small plaque in memory of Joan at the north tower. Beyond this project, Joan was an advocate for patients in the Gundersen Health System tri-state region. She made many contributions to better healthcare for people who will never know her or realize the improvements she made for them. 

Joan, we miss you and know that you’d be proud of this result. 

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2 thoughts on “A Tribute to Joan

  1. Joan, was my sister and yes a very remarkable person. I am certain Joan would have simply shrugged her shoulders and been so proud this project was accomplished with the teamwork of many! She would have been very humbled by this tribute.
    Thank you for remembering her energy and passion,
    Pat Stender

  2. Joan Curran was my 1st cousin. It sounds to me that her influence in your lives was as dramatic as it was of those who knew and loved her as family. I am grateful to you folks for remembering Joan in this memorial. She is so missed by us as well. What a great person. I only wish I could be more like Joannie, and I look forward to someday seeing her again.

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