Priority Health announces leadership changes, strengthens East Region

(Grand Rapids, Mich. – Sept. 17, 2018)  Priority Health, Michigan's second-largest health plan, today announced leadership changes as it continues to grow membership and make healthcare more transparent. 

Diane Wolfenden has been named the new vice president of the East Region. Wolfenden will oversee business development, sales and product growth in southeast Michigan for the group commercial markets as well as the small group market across the state. She assumed her new responsibilities on September 4, taking over for Michael Jasperson.

"Diane's knowledge of healthcare and proven financial leadership in the health insurance industry made her the clear choice to continue Priority Health's growth in a region where we can make a huge difference," said Rick V. Morrone, senior vice president of employer solutions for Priority Health. "She has proven to be a strong leader within our company, and her abilities will enable us to create stronger relationships with the East Michigan community."

Jasperson has been named the new vice president of Provider Network – East Region, replacing Richard O’Donnell, who has announced his intention to retire in April 2019. In his role, Jasperson will be responsible for driving strategy and relationships with various providers in East Michigan to both improve quality and lower the cost of care for Priority Health members.  

"What will allow Mike to excel in this role is both his passion for the provider side of healthcare, and his extensive background in business strategy and development," said Mike Koziara, senior vice president of provider network for Priority Health. "We know he will bring the same qualities which allowed him to successfully grow our presence in Eastern Michigan to the provider side of the business."

Before coming to Priority Health, Jasperson was the vice president business development, chief marketing officer for Hospice of Michigan. He earned a master's degree in business administration from University of Tampa, with a concentration in Health Services Administration. He also holds a Master of Science in administration from Central Michigan University. Jasperson received his baccalaureate degree from Michigan State University.

Most recently, Wolfenden was the director of sales and client services for Priority Health in the eastern region, leading operational excellence and service of the group commercial market. Prior to that, Wolfenden held a number of cross-functional leadership roles at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan in sales and underwriting, overseeing a multitude of segments within the underwritten and self-funded group markets. Wolfenden is a graduate of the Leadership Oakland Cornerstone Program and holds a Bachelors of Business in administration from Walsh College.

About Priority Health:

Priority Health is an award-winning, Michigan-based non-profit health plan nationally recognized for improving the health and lives of the people it serves. It continues to lead the industry in engaging members in their health, delivering effective health and disease management programs and working with physicians to improve health care outcomes and performance. Priority Health is one of only 20 health plans nationwide offering wellness programs accredited by the National Committee for Quality Assurance, an organization which also rated it among the best health plans in the nation. The State of Michigan named the Priority Health HMO the benchmark plan for all individual and group HMO plans to model.

Priority Health offers a broad portfolio of health benefit options for employer groups and individuals, including Medicare and Medicaid plans. Its network of health care providers features 95 percent of practicing physicians available in Michigan and more than 900,000 health care providers nationwide.