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County hospital names new CEO

A new leader has been named to replace long-time Douglas County Hospital administrator Bill Flaig.

The DCH board announced Tuesday that Carl P. Vaagenes has accepted the position of Douglas County Hospital CEO.

Since 2001, Vaagenes has been the president and chief executive officer of Unity Family Healthcare in Little Falls.

Before working in Little Falls, Vaagenes spent nine years as the CEO of Pipestone County Medical Center.

"We are very pleased Mr. Vaagenes has accepted this important position because he comes highly recommended and has over 20 years of healthcare executive leadership experience in creating and operating rural integrated health care delivery systems," said Bev Bales, chair of the DCH board.

The board is grateful for Flaig's leadership over the years, Bales said.

"Bill Flaig has done an exemplary job as CEO of Douglas County Hospital for the past 27 years," she said. "He has brought the hospital to the designation as a top 100 hospital in the U.S. twice. Bill is highly respected by employees, the community and his peers statewide and beyond. He will be missed but we know the transition to the new CEO will go smoothly. We wish the best for Bill and Barb Flaig."

Vaagenes said the position is a good fit for him.

"My family and I enjoy our rural roots and are looking forward to becoming a part of the Douglas County community," he said. "As someone who has been a colleague of Bill Flaig for many years, I have been extremely impressed with the hospital's commitment to quality and financial strength."

Vaagenes plans to start his new position at Douglas County Hospital on May 2.

Al Edenloff
Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  
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