Area hospital systems announce changes Hospital systems with a regional presence announced mergers, acquisitions and changes affecting naming. Ascension Health and Providence St. Joseph Health are exploring a merger, a move that would create the nation’s largest hospital chain, the Wall Street Journal reported. The merger would result in a health system with 191 hospitals in 27 states and an annual revenue of $44.8 billion, according to the Wall Street Journal report.
Ascension hospitals, clinics and care sites in the Fox Valley have adopted the new unified Ascension, branding and logo. Last year, Ministry Health Care, including Affinity Health System, Columbia St. Mary’s and Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare came together as Ascension Wisconsin.
Aurora Health Care and Advocate Health Care, the largest health care system in Illinois, announced plans to merge to create Advocate Aurora Health, the 10th largest not-for-profit, integrated health care system in the United States, serving nearly 3 million patients each year.
The new organization will operate 27 hospitals, more than 500 sites of care, and employ more than 3,300 physicians and nearly 70,000 associates and caregivers.
The two health care systems have a combined annual revenue of approximately $11 billion.
The agreement is subject to state and federal regulatory review and approval, including the Federal Trade Commission and agencies within Illinois and Wisconsin. Closing is expected by mid-year 2018.
Dickinson County Healthcare System, which serves northern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, announced its board of directors has signed a letter of intent with Bellin Health to explore the possibility of being acquired by Bellin.
A purchase agreement is expected to be worked out during the coming months and finalized during the second quarter of 2018.
ATW begins $6.8 million improvement project Appleton International Airport has begun construction on its customer experience improvement project. The upgrade will include a Transportation Security Administration checkpoint expansion, new restaurant and gift shop, conference room, mother’s room, ticket counters, baggage claim and customer service center.
The terminal upgrade project is funded by a mix of federal and state aid and airport funds and is expected to be completed by July 2018. Multifamily housing unit coming to Lambeau area
A 78-unit multifamily development is coming to Ashwaubenon. Called Manseau Flats, the Class A development will be located along the western bank of the Fox River.
Once complete, Manseau Flats will comprise a six-story apartment community offering one- and two-bedroom floorplans. The property will be situated on 2 acres of land with quick access to a bike path, a marina and several major thoroughfares. Marinette Marine-built ship commissioned in New York The USS Little Rock, the fifth Freedomvariant LCS built by Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine, was commissioned in Buffalo, N.Y.
The ship was the first U.S. Navy ship to be commissioned next to its decommissioned namesake. The Littoral Combat Ship was built at Marinette Marine. Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine delivered the ship to the Navy in September. After its commissioning, the ship entered active service.
Lakeland receives grant for food safety program Lakeland University has received a $500,000 gift from Johnsonville to fund the nation’s first food safety and quality bachelor’s degree program.
Lakeland’s food safety and quality program blends the science of biology and chemistry with best business practices to prepare students for careers in food processing.
The gift from Johnsonville will fund: creation of a state-of-the-art, on-campus lab allowing hands-on experience and real work replication; student transport to Johnsonville facilities for real work experiences; and educational trips to food companies as well as other programs costs.
Unlike a food science degree, which prepares students for food research and development, Lakeland’s food safety and quality program, which is pending approval by the Higher Learning Commission, focuses on the safe production of food.
Students in the program will learn from food industry leaders by working and earning credit both in Lakeland’s classrooms and at local employers.
The university also has received a $250,000 grant from the Lynde & Harry Bradley Foundation to support its new Cooperative Education Program.
This fall, Lakeland became the first institution of its kind to adopt a cooperative education model, which will help students address the issue of post-graduate debt and respond to employment gaps in Wisconsin’s private sector job market.
Lakeland students will alternate semesters of study with semesters of full-time work experience, gaining academic credit and developing professional skills. The Bradley Foundation funds will support the continued development of the Cooperative Education Program in Lakeland’s School of Business and Entrepreneurship.
FedEx to build Sheboygan distribution center
FedEx will begin construction of a new distribution center for FedEx Freight on the city’s far south side next spring.
The plans call for development of a cross dock distribution center for FedEx in the Sheboygan Business Center on an estimated 15 acres. The new facility will employ up to 42 new full-time employees.
The 28,000-square-foot facility will be built on property at Concord Drive and Gateway Drive, east of Ken Markwardt Service and south of Weeden Creek Road. The project is valued at $10.5 million with a total build out value of $19.2 million. Plans include a future expansion sometime with the next eight years.
1st National Bank announces charter, name change Berlin-based 1st National Bank is changing from a national to a state bank charter and changing its name to Fortifi. With the move, the bank aims to better align with the communities it serves and create additional resources to focus on client service.
As a chartered bank, 1st National’s primary role is to accept and safeguard monetary deposits from individuals and organizations, and to lend money. Making the transition to the state chartered designation requires 1st National to change its name.
The charter transition will be completed within the first quarter of 2018. Account numbers, checks, and debit cards will continue to function the same. Visual elements will begin to transition in late February, and clients may have to download an updated version of the bank’s mobile application.