EDWIN FONNER

Obituary
  • "Ed personified servant leadership and our surgical outcomes..."
    - Karen Forsman
  • "I never met Ed, but many teleconferences with STS. As I was..."
    - Marcela Munoz
  • "Sad to see the unfortunate loss of your partner. I will..."
    - Richard Dybdahl
  • "I only knew Ed for a short period of time, however you can..."
    - Blair Payne
  • "Hands down, the best hugger in the world! Just such a..."
    - Vickie Westmoreland

FONNER--Edwin, Jr., on January 26, 2014. He was born in Denver, CO on December 5, 1948 and is survived by his spouse of 42 years, Maribeth Ann, and his son Clifford Edwin. He was raised in an Air force family and lived in Japan, Germany, and many locations across the United States. Ed earned multiple degrees: BA in Psychology from the University of Texas, Austin, 1972; MPH, 1976, University of Texas Health Science Center, Houston; MBA, 1979, University of Houston; and Doctor of Public Health (DrPH), 1979, University of Texas Health Science Center. His professional endeavors included: studies in clinical psychology, Chicago; six years in retail stock brokerage, Houston; branch money management and brokerage operations (Paine Webber and Rotan Mosle); investment research; and municipal debt underwriting, Denver and New York City. Ed was with Voluntary Hospitals of America's capital unit and clinical/financial information system (NYC and Irving, TX, 1987 to 1988). Ed directed research and information systems at the Catholic Health Association, St. Louis, 1989 to 1995. Ed helped start the Kansas Health Institute and was Executive Director of the Kansas Governor's Public Health Improvement Commission. He helped form a health insurance purchasing pool for small business and served as grant writer and evaluator to the Manhattan, KS Community Health Council, Project Access. He won three Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grants. He was Director of Outreach at the Kansas University School of Medicine. More recently, Ed was the Executive Director and Board member for the Kansas Health Insurance Association. He was the Executive Director for the California Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) and the Virginia Cardiac Surgery Quality Initiative (VCSQI). He started the web site: HealthDataForum.com and served on the STS Adult Cardiac Surgery Database Taskforce. He assisted the Kansas Insurance Department's Affordable Care Act initiatives and wrote the business plan for the Kansas Health Cooperative loan (2010 and 2012). Ed completed over 25 published articles and posters for scientific sessions. Ed's athletic accomplishments: Nolan High School, varsity basketball, football, and track teams. He won All-District and All-State honors in basketball and his team won All-District in his senior year, 1966. He placed first in the District high jump and high hurdles in 1966. Ed was a runner and competitive athlete most of his adulthood. He completed over 10 "century rides," three five-kilometer swims, multiple half-marathons, two marathons, and 70 triathlons after age 50, including IronMan Louisville in 2007 and 2008. Ed's Key Learnings: be self-made; bring out the best in people; have pure intention; and listen. "With his loving wife and esteemed son, there was nothing in his life wanting."

Published in The New York Times on Jan. 31, 2014
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