Growing up, Dan Konow (’98) was the son of blue-collar working-class parents in Fort Wayne, Ind. It was from his parents, Konow says, that he learned the importance of hard work and integrity, which helped him find success in his professional life.
“My dad always told me, ‘There’s only one thing people can’t take from you, and that is your integrity,’” Konow said. “That has helped me so much in life. Be transparent, and you can get through difficult things in life.”
Over the past 30 years, Konow has risen in the health care ranks, moving from practitioner to CEO in his home state of Indiana. Recently, the Trevecca alumnus was named the chief executive officer for Lutheran Health Physicians (LHP), a subsidiary of Lutheran Health Network, one of the largest employers in northeast Indiana.
Born in the original Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne, Konow says he’s excited to take on a leadership role in the organization that played such a pivotal role in his life.
“I’m… truly invested in this hospital,” Konow said. “It’s exciting for me to be a part of this. I want to make it the best quality and lowest price in the area.”
Konow’s colleagues are equally excited to see him take on the CEO role.
“Dan’s knowledge of local health care and experience with our organization are assets we valued greatly during our extensive search,” said Mark Medley, regional president and chief executive officer at Lutheran Health Network.
Konow began his journey as a freshman at another Nashville university but ended up moving home to Fort Wayne before finishing his degree. Back in his hometown, Konow’s passion for health care began to blossom.
Living at home and taking classes in nursing and biology, Konow got involved with Indiana’s first physician assistant program at Lutheran College. He began volunteering as an EMT and worked as a tech in the intensive care unit at a local hospital in Fort Wayne.
“That’s how I got my boots on the ground and [saw] the inner workings of the health care world,” Konow recalled.
Recognizing the impact that quality health care can make on people’s lives, Konow realized he had discovered his calling. He made his way back to Nashville and enrolled at Trevecca with plans to become a physician assistant.
Trevecca’s physician assistant program (PA) is the oldest in the state of Tennessee and has been preparing graduates to provide compassionate health care for others since 1976. When Konow came to Trevecca, the program—which is now offered at the master’s degree level—was an undergraduate degree.
Designed for students aspiring to work in the medical field as mid-level practitioners, the program offered a bachelor’s degree in allied health. Then, as it does now, the program prepared graduates to sit for the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination (PANCE). Passing this exam allows PAs to become certified physician assistants.
After graduating from Trevecca, Konow spent several years working as a PA in clinical practice before moving into the administrative side of the health care industry. Prior to his current role at LHP, Konow served as the company’s chief operating officer. He spent two decades with Lutheran Health Network. During those years, he worked for eight years as the CEO of RediMed and also served as the chief operating officer and chief executive officer of Fort Wayne Medical Oncology and Hematology.
With a broad range of experience in health care, Konow hopes to continue to serve his hometown through his work. His vast industry experience along with his Trevecca training guide him as he seeks to improve the lives—and health care options—of Fort Wayne residents.
“I’ve got such a broad range of experience,” Konow said. “I can take [that] back to where I was born.”
To learn more about Trevecca’s physician assistant program, visit Trevecca.edu/PA.