Darren Walker was placed as the vice president of business solutions at Sanford Health in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Sanford is an integrated health system that, with $4.2 billion in annual net operating revenue, is the largest rural, not-for-profit healthcare system in the nation, providing care to patients in a 250,000-square-mile service area. This unique system consists of health services, development and research, a health plan that covers more than 175,000 lives, one of the most successful healthcare foundations in the nation, academic affairs, and Frontiers, a for-profit business venture arm. It has locations in 132 communities in nine states, and has developed international clinics in Ghana, China, and Germany. Sanford Health includes 43 hospitals, 45 long-term care facilities, 250 clinic locations, and 1,433 physicians in more than 80 subspecialty areas of medicine. With more than 27,000 employees, Sanford Health is the largest employer in the Dakotas. Darren holds overall responsibility for the execution of Sanford's human resources strategy across all business lines, overseeing and managing the delivery of human resources solutions in the areas of organizational development and effectiveness, change management, talent management and development, workforce planning, succession management, diversity and inclusion, employee wellness, and labor relations.
Darren brings to the position extensive experience in bringing together fragmented groups and achieving integration. He is also skilled at creating organizational development strategies, and experienced with Lean methodologies.
Before joining Sanford, Darren served as the vice president of human resources, performance improvement, and guest services for the Montana region of the SCL Health system, which encompassed St. Vincent Healthcare and Holy Rosary Healthcare, together employing a total of approximately 3,500 individuals. In this capacity, Darren collaborated on the creation and implementation of regional HR strategy initiatives, and held regional responsibility for the Lean team, guest services, volunteers, and health access. He had system responsibility for delivering SCL's HR transformation, facilitating the transformation from a siloed environment to one that was integrated and standardized, placing particular emphasis on developing enterprise-wide solutions for SCL's performance management systems, succession planning mechanisms, and rewards and recognition, among others. Darren also led his region out of its manual paper environment, and spent a considerable amount of time on leadership development initiatives.
Previously, Darren served as the director of human resources for Providence Health & Services' Washington/Montana Medical Group and as a human resources manager for Intermountain Medical Group. He began his career as an account manager and professional recruiter with Aerotek in Salt Lake City.
Darren is originally from the Salt Lake City area. He earned his bachelor's degree in business management from the University of Utah and his master's degree in organization management from the University of Phoenix. He is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management and the American Society for Healthcare Human Resources Administration. Darren and his wife are the parents of three children. Outside of work, Darren enjoys skiing and riding his four-wheeler.