Sarah Herzog, Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare
Law degrees received from: (J.D.) SUNY-Buffalo Law School, 1994; (LLM) Loyola University Chicago School of Law, 1996
Whether she’s supporting the mission of the Upendo Village for HIV/AIDS sufferers in Kenya or looking after the legal needs of thousands of health system employees stateside, Sarah Herzog sees her role as “secondary” to the people serving on the front lines.
“The Franciscan Sisters’ mission [at Upendo Village], in part, is to provide compassionate care to all who need it,” explained Herzog. “My job is to put things in place, get things set up so that people on the front lines of Wheaton Franciscan can do the important work.”
But keeping things “in place” for Wheaton Franciscan, Wisconsin’s second largest private employer — with nearly 10,000 associates in southeast Wisconsin and affiliations with more than 1,300 physicians throughout the area — is no small task.
Her position as senior vice president and general counsel with Wheaton Franciscan daily plunges Herzog into the timely issues of death and dying, the cost of quality care, ever-changing regulations and guidelines, and the joy of working hard for a mission she can easily support.
Her mentor, Richard Canter, a senior vice president at Wheaton Franciscan, said Herzog confidently navigates balancing the business needs of the company and the mission of the Franciscan Sisters.
But it’s her excellent communication skills that really set her apart, he said.
“Very few attorneys can do these things like Sarah Herzog,” Canter said.
After earning her juris doctor degree at SUNY-Buffalo and a master of laws in health law from Loyola University Chicago, Herzog was chosen to be the first American Bar Association health law fellow. She worked as partner and chair of the Health Law Practice Group at Michael Best & Friedrich LLP before joining Wheaton Franciscan in 2005.
Despite her many responsibilities, Herzog remains as committed to Upendo Village, where she is a member of the board of directors, as she is to her daily responsibilities at Wheaton Franciscan.
“We’re lucky to have her,” said Sister Theresa Langfield, president and executive director of Upendo Village. “She never says she has too much on her plate and never says to call me back in six months. She just does it and never complains.”