From serving 20 years as a nurse and hospital administrator at Holland Hospital, to her first role at Holland Home, which she took in 1998, Mina Breuker has established a well-rounded understanding of how to lead in the health profession.
Breuker was recently named president and CEO of Holland Home, succeeding David Claus, who stepped down as the Christian nonprofit's leader after serving since 1991. "I am excited about Mina's promotion and her future work with the organization. She will do an outstanding job," Claus said. "I am confident that our leadership is in good hands."
Breuker's interest in administration began while she was practicing as a nurse. "I was always volunteering to help write policy, be on committees, and work on projects. It showed management that I was open to new opportunities." This openness led to Breuker's appointment as Director of Emergency at Holland Hospital. "It was a great learning opportunity and a tough transition. I managed it by considering, 'How did I, as a nurse, want to be represented, treated, and respected?' and letting that help me to be a leader." The position stretched Breuker with new responsibilities, and she met the challenge by continually educating herself, including eventually earning a Master of Business Management degree from Aquinas College, in addition to her RN and BSN degrees. "I sometimes asked myself, 'What am I doing? I'm a nurse!'"
Long-term care had always been an interest of Breuker's. Before she became an RN, she had worked at a nursing home while she waited for a slot in nursing school to open up. When she sought to move her career in the direction of long-term care, "Everyone said, 'You need to look at Holland Home.'"
In 1998, Breuker joined Holland Home as an administrator at Fulton Manor, and later worked at Raybrook and Breton Woods, as well. Her work with Holland Home inspires her. "We have a great mission to serve others, and I'm excited about moving that mission forward. We have a big responsibility to those we serve. It's also serving with a commitment to excellence. Our quality outcomes are among the best in the country. It's really a new day in health care. The need for collaboration between and among providers is essential to provide the best care for the community. A healthcare organization working in a silo is no longer an option. I believe in building relationships that promote best practices and benefit the community at large."
Serving is a big part of what Breuker does, all around, in her life. She has traveled on missions to South Africa, Kenya, and South America, helping women to develop job skills. "To see women with very little means be able to provide for their families is very meaningful." She is also involved in community outreach at her church, including working with Habitat for Humanity. Breuker recalled an instance when, years after working on a Habitat Home, she was greeted by the homeowner, who proudly updated Breuker about the supervisor position she had been hired into and thanked Breuker for her encouragement. "The time we spend with people, and the encouragement we give—we don't always know the impact it will have on others."
Breuker, whose promotion became effective earlier this summer, will lead all divisions of Holland Home, including three senior-living campus, skilled nursing and rehabilitation divisions, faith hospice, home care, and other home and community-based services that serve 13 counties. "We are one of the area's best kept secrets," Breuker said. "Over 51 percent of our revenue comes from our home and community-based services. We care for people in one of our homes or theirs. We meet their need, wherever it is!"
Written by Jennifer Reynolds, West Michigan Woman Magazine staff writer.
Photo courtesy of David Chandler.