Category Archives: Ascencion Via Christi

Via Christi Adds Pediatric Echocardiogram Program


Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg has added a Pediatric Echocardiogram program, making quality diagnostic imaging services more accessible to families throughout southeast
Kansas.

“Over the last few years we have invested extensively in our imaging programs to bring new technology and innovations to our community,” says Travis Battagler, director of the Heart
Center and Imaging Operations. “We have worked to grow our diagnostic cardiology echo program, including our recent expansion of that service line to Fort Scott.”

The Pediatric Echocardiograms are being offered in Pittsburg, which is just 30 miles down the road from Fort Scott.

Being able to have an ultrasound of the heart performed in a familiar setting is less stressful for children and more convenient for their parents, which in the end may help to recognize life-threatening conditions faster.

“This is just one way we can better serve our community and the surrounding areas now and in the future,” says Tyler Matthews, lead echocardiography technologist.

For more information about Ascension Via Christi in Pittsburg go to ascension.org/pittsburgKS.
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About Ascension Via Christi
In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly 6,400
associates. Across the state, Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community benefit and care of
persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2021. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years, Ascension is a faith-based
healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to
persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the leading non-profit and Catholic health system in

Ascension Via Christi Emergency Department in Fort Scott receives Geriatric Accreditation



The Ascension Via Christi Emergency Department in Fort Scott has received a Level 3 accreditation by the American College of Emergency Physicians’ Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation program (GEDA), which along with the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine, Emergency Nurses Association and American Geriatrics Society developed and released geriatric ED guidelines.


“This accreditation is very exciting for us and has allowed us to focus on improving the quality of care for one of our largest patient populations,” says Jessica Cobb, Emergency Department director. “Becoming a geriatric emergency department allows us to integrate best practices and standardized approaches to care for the older citizens in our community.”


Fort Scott’s full-service ER is staffed by physicians 24/7 and includes CT scans, ultrasounds and a new, fully remodeled radiology department with six exam rooms and additional treatment
spaces. As part of their geriatric certification, a nurse and physician on staff completed specific geriatric training and serve as clinical champions for geriatric care in the ED.


This accreditation allows the Emergency Department to continue to provide high standards of close-to-home care to our community.
For more information about Ascension Via Christi Emergency Department in Fort Scott go to ascension.org/pittsburgKS.
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About Ascension Via Christi
In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly 6,400 associates. Across the state, Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2021. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to
persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the leading non-profit and Catholic health system in
the U.S., operating more than 2,600 sites of care – including 145 hospitals and more than 40 senior living facilities – in 19 states and the District of Columbia. Visit www.ascension.org.

Ann Ogle Promoted At Ascension Via Christi, Pittsburg

Nuclear Medicine tech now PACS administrator at
Ascension Via Christi in Pittsburg


Ann Ogle, who began her career with Ascension Via Christi in Pittsburg 18 years ago as a Nuclear Medicine tech, is the newly named administrator of its Picture Archiving and
Communication System, or PACS.


Ogle found her love for the medical field during high school. “When I was 17, I had a study done on my gallbladder and I just remember that technologist being so kind and caring to me, “ she
says. “At that time, I had never heard of Nuclear Medicine.

Afterward, I did my research and that’s what led me to this line of work!”


That line of work involves performing tests for diagnosis and medical research.

Ogle’s new additional role is to provide local support and guidance to the hospital team in using the image-archiving technology.


“Ann is dedicated to her career and puts patient care as a top priority,” says Travis Battagler, director of Heart Center and Imaging Operations. “She continues to look for ways to improve
patient satisfaction and at the same time accommodate the needs of our medical staff.”


Ogle says her new role came after taking a liking to the IT and imaging world of Radiology.

She enjoys the variety and challenges that come along with her job and says it helps to keep her sharp.


“Someone once told me, ‘Act like your patients are your family members. Each patient is someone’s dad, mom, grandpa, grandma…’ I know I would want my family members to be taken care of,” says Ogle. “So that is the way I try to approach every patient.”


If you are interested in growing your career with Ascension Via Christi in Pittsburg, browse opportunities at https://ascn.io/3wl1GJO.

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About Ascension Via Christi
In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly 6,400
associates. Across the state, Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community benefit and care of
persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2021. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years, Ascension is a faith-based
healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to
persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the leading non-profit and Catholic health system in
the U.S., operating more than 2,600 sites of care – including 145 hospitals and more than 40 senior living facilities –
in 19 states and the District of Columbia. Visit www.ascension.org

Kevin Strecker: Ascension Via Christi New Senior Vice President

StreckerKevin_45_RGB_72.jpg

Kevin Strecker to lead Ascension Via Christi; Don King to transition
to leading Ascension Florida and Gulf Coast


Scott City, Kansas, native Kevin Strecker has been named Ascension Kansas ministry market executive
and senior vice president for Ascension, bringing more than two decades of healthcare leadership
experience to his new role.


Strecker, currently hospital president and chief operating officer for Ascension Via Christi, will be
assuming the role filled by Don King, who as of July 1 will lead Ascension’s Florida and Gulf Coast
ministry market.


“Kevin’s experience, education, and commitment to our Mission and Catholic healthcare make him the
right person to lead our Kansas ministry going forward,” said Craig Cordola, MBA, MHA, FACHE, Ascension
executive vice president and chief operating officer.


Strecker joined Ascension Via Christi in 1994, serving at what today is Ascension Via Christi Rehabilitation
Hospital. In 1997, he and his wife, Karen, moved to Chicago, where he worked as a regional administrator
for Health South’s imaging division. In 2002, the Streckers moved back to Wichita and he rejoined
Ascension Via Christi as director of Radiology. He subsequently was promoted to vice president of
Imaging and Laboratory Services.


In 2009, he was named vice president of Operations for Ascension Via Christi’s Wichita hospitals and the
following year was selected to lead newly constructed Ascension Via Christi St. Teresa. In 2016, he took
on the role of senior administrator for Ascension Medical Group Via Christi. Two years later, he was
chosen to serve as interim regional hospital president and in 2019 he moved to his current role as the
operational leader for Ascension Via Christi’s Kansas hospitals.


Strecker earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Kansas State University. He later
went on to earn a Master of Business Administration degree from Webster University and a master’s
degree in Management and Leadership.

Strecker is a graduate of the Ascension Executive Ministry Leadership formation program and serves as a
board member for the Wichita Cancer Foundation, Catholic Care Center and Kansas Surgery and Recovery
Center.
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About Ascension Via Christi
In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly
6,400 associates. Across the state, Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community
benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2021. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years,
Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized
care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the
leading non-profit and Catholic health system in the U.S., operating more than 2,600 sites of care –
including 145 hospitals and more than 40 senior living facilities – in 19 states.

Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg adds OB/GYN

OB/GYN Kari Hamlin, MD, has joined Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg.

As a Kansas native, Dr. Hamlin knows the importance of close-to-home, community-based care and is excited to care for women in all stages of life.

Dr. Hamlin earned her undergraduate and Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Kansas and then did her OB/GYN residency through UKSM-W at Wesley Medical Center.
She also earned Master’s degrees in both Business Administration and Health Care Leadership from Friends University.

Prior to joining Ascension Via Christi, Dr. Hamlin spent nearly a decade caring for patients at other rural Kansas family medicine clinics and medical centers. During that period, she served as chief of Obstetrics and chief of Staff for Neosho Memorial Regional Medical Center.

“We are excited that Dr. Hamlin chose Ascension Via Christi to practice, further improving access to care for women in Southeast Kansas,” says Drew Talbott, hospital president. “Dr. Hamlin’s knowledge, courtesy, patient-first mindset and compassion makes her a great fit for our OB/GYN team.”

Patients can schedule an appointment with Dr. Hamlin by calling 620-230-0044. For more information, visit ascension.org/PittsburgKS.

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About Ascension Via Christi

 

In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly 6,400 associates. Across the state, Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2021. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the leading non-profit and Catholic health system in the U.S., operating more than 2,600 sites of care – including 145 hospitals and more than 40 senior living facilities – in 19 states and the District of Columbia. Visit www.ascension.org

Ascension Via Christi Wound Center receives Center of Distinction recognition

Acsension Via Christi. Submitted photo.

The Wound Center at Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg has been recognized as a Healogics Center of Distinction based on its outstanding clinical and operational results in 2021 despite the
extraordinary circumstances presented by the pandemic.

To earn this recognition, centers must achieve or exceed a 92 percent patient satisfaction rate and 75 percent wound adjusted comprehensive healing rate and have an outlier rate of less than 16 percent; Pittsburg’s wound center numbers were 95 percent, 80 percent and 12 percent.

“I am so proud of the work this team does,” says Charlotte Russell, director of Physician Services, noting how well they work with each other on patients’ behalf. “In addition to being clinically proficient, they are all so kind and accommodating. They truly are a blessing to our Mission.”

Rachel Stevens, MD, serves as the wound center’s medical director and Tammie Caves as its clinical
program director.
To learn more about the Wound Center, call (620) 235-7522.

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About Ascension Via Christi
In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly 6,400 associates. Across
the state, Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year
2021. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering
compassionate, personalized care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is
the leading non-profit and Catholic health system in the U.S., operating more than 2,600 sites of care – including 145 hospitals and
more than 40 senior living facilities – in 19 states and the District of Columbia. Visit www.ascension.org,

Update on Ascension Via Christi Fort Scott: Staying and Expanding

Drew Talbott. Submitted photo.
The closing of Mercy Hospital Fort Scott in 2018, left the community lacking emergency care.  The community was apprehensive about the closure because the nearest emergency care facilities are in hospitals in Pittsburg, which is 30 miles south or Iola, which is 47 miles west.
History
In 2018, leaders in Bourbon County approached Ascension Via Christi Hospital leaders in Pittsburg to provide continued access to emergency care in the former Mercy Hospital Emergency Room.
After careful deliberation,  Ascension determined they would play a role, President Drew Talbot of Ascension Via Christi Hospital said.
Mercy Hospital kept the ER open after the hospital closed on Dec. 31, 2018, until the Ascension Via Christi Fort Scott Emergency Department could get the approval to operate under the Pittsburg hospital licensure.  Then Ascension filled the hole in services and saw its first patient on Feb. 28, 2019.
Ascension Via Christi Hospital has imaging and laboratory services at 401 Woodland Hills, Fort Scott.
Services
 Since that date, the emergency department has seen more than 16,000 emergency room patients, performed more than 20,000 imaging studies, and processed more than 54,000 lab tests, according to Talbot in an interview.
And they have expanded services.
109 S.Main is the location of Ascension Via Christi’s Medical Clinic in downtown Fort Scott. The photo was taken in January 2020.
“We subsequently opened a primary care and prenatal clinic with a local provider and later added a second provider to meet the community need,” Talbot said. “When our hospital in Pittsburg successfully recruited David Robbins, MD, and Justin Ogden, MD, we further expanded the services offered at our Fort Scott clinic to include cardiology and orthopedics.”
“We utilize the same laboratory used by our Ascension Via Christi hospitals throughout Kansas,” Talbot said. “We have on-site diagnostic imaging capabilities, including CT, digital X-ray, ultrasound, and most recently-cardiac echo ultrasound. As part of Ascension Via Christi, these images are read by a Kansas group of 30 board-certified radiologists with advanced training in a variety of areas, providing our Fort Scott ER and Pittsburg hospital with diagnostic capabilities on par with those of a large metro-area hospital.”
They currently have 35 associates serving in Fort Scott, he said.
Future
“We have an agreement with Bourbon County (Commissioners)that will take us to February 2023 and we hope to continue to offer our services in Fort Scott for as long as there is an unmet need,” Talbot said.
“We are proud of the sustainable model of care that we have established,” Talbot said.
“While we understand Bourbon County leaders’ desire to explore the viability of returning to a community hospital model,  (see: Noble Health Announces Reopening a Hospital in Fort Scott) our lived experience as the community’s emergency care provider indicates that the volumes are too low to do so without federal or local taxpayer funding,” he said.
“However, as a department of our hospital in Pittsburg, we have demonstrated that we can operate an ER and supporting services in a financially sustainable manner,” he said. “We have an essentially self-supporting model of care and we are proud of our caregivers’ contribution to patients and families and to Fort Scott’s growth and development.”
Via Christi is working on securing a  facility to continue to expand its services once the Feb. 2023 agreement is completed.
“We recognize and appreciate the need for patients and families to receive close-to-home care whenever there is sufficient demand to support services,” he said. “That’s what led us to respond to the community’s needs when Mercy closed its doors. Our clinics have received tremendous community support. We are already looking to expand the availability and types of services being offered. With that in mind, we are working on securing a long-term home where we can offer these and potentially other needed services under one roof.”
Precedent
 
“We accepted the community’s invitation to serve because ensuring Kansans’ access to care is in keeping with our mission as a non-profit Catholic healthcare system,” Talbot said. “It also has historical precedent,  given that Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg was founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph nearly 120 years ago at the request of Mt. Carmel Coal Mining Co. founder Charles Devlin, who recognized miners’ need for close-to-home care.”
 
 
 
 
 
 

Ascension Via Christi Clinic in Fort Scott expands services to include echocardiograms, ultrasound

Ascension Via Christi Clinic in Fort Scott is now offering ultrasound and echocardiogram services, making it possible for patients to receive these services in the best possible place: Close to home and family.

“We continue to invest in and grow our outpatient services in both Fort Scott and Pittsburg,” says Drew Talbott,
president of Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg, under whose umbrella the Fort Scott ER and associated clinic
and diagnostic services operate. “Physicians and specialists in both geographic markets will have access to the
diagnostic imaging they need to provide seamless, well-coordinated care, which is particularly important for heart care
patients and expectant mothers.”

The newly added imaging services, which require a physician referral, are being provided every Thursday at Ascension
Via Christi’s Fort Scott clinic.

Josh Seaver, who lives in Fort Scott and has served as an sonography technologist at Ascension Via Christi Hospital in
Pittsburg for 2.5 years, says he is excited to play a role in making these services more readily accessible to his
neighbors.

“As someone who commutes to work daily, I am happy to eliminate patients’ need to drive to either Pittsburg or Joplin
whenever possible,” says Seaver. “Having the services available is a benefit to them and to me as it is one less day on
the road.”

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About Ascension Via Christi
In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly 6,400 associates. Across the state,
Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2021. Serving Kansas for
more than 135 years, Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized care to all, with
special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the leading non-profit and Catholic health system in the U.S.,
operating more than 2,600 sites of care – including 145 hospitals and more than 40 senior living facilities – in 19 states and the District of Columbia.
Visit www.ascension.org.

Ascension Via Christi Cancer Center in Pittsburg Completes Renovations

The renovation of the Ascension Via Christi Cancer Center is now complete, giving Pittsburg-area patients who are battling cancer close-to-home access to advanced technology in a patient- and family-friendly environment.

The outpatient cancer center opened 26 years ago, funded entirely by donations to the Mount Carmel Foundation’s “Legacy of Hope” campaign.

The $1 million renovation also was funded entirely by
community donations, this time to the “Legacy of Hope II” campaign led by Johnna Norton, the foundation’s executive director.

“I am so proud to live and serve in such a giving community and with a team that throughout the pandemic has continued to provide exceptional care to our patients,” said Charlotte Russell, director of
operations for the Ascension Via Christi Cancer Center and Ascension Medical Group Via Christi physician practices in Pittsburg.

Through the community’s generosity, the chemotherapy area now has seven private treatment suites and the entire cancer center was updated to create a brighter and more welcoming environment. The patient and family resource room was also refurbished, providing a comfortable space for the patient and family education, nutritional counseling and spiritual and emotional support services.

Ascension Via Christi Hospital also made a significant investment in the cancer center, spending $1.5 million to acquire a new state-of-the-art TrueBeam linear accelerator, allowing patients to receive highly precise radiation therapy in a shorter period of time.
In January, the hospital added medical oncologists James Moore, MD, and Michael Cannon, MD, to its medical staff. Drs. Moore and Cannon, both with Cancer Center of Kansas, join medical oncologist Mickey Xun, MD, with Ascension Medical Group Via Christi, and radiation oncologist Duane Myers, MD, with Radiation Oncology Associates, in providing southeast Kansas residents ready access to comprehensive cancer care.

“We now have a beautiful space, an outstanding team of physicians and the advanced technology we need to continue our legacy as the community’s cancer care partner,” said Drew Talbott, president of
Ascension Via Christi Hospital in Pittsburg. “Like Charlotte, I am tremendously grateful and proud of our community and staff.”
For more information about Ascension Via Christi in Pittsburg, visit ascension.org/PittsburgKS.

Via Christi Cancer Center Chemotherapy Bays. Submitted photo

About Ascension Via Christi
In Kansas, Ascension Via Christi operates seven hospitals and 75 other sites of care and employs nearly
6,400 associates. Across the state, Ascension Via Christi provided nearly $89 million in community
benefit and care of persons living in poverty in fiscal year 2021. Serving Kansas for more than 135 years,
Ascension is a faith-based healthcare organization committed to delivering compassionate, personalized
care to all, with special attention to persons living in poverty and those most vulnerable. Ascension is the
leading non-profit and Catholic health system in the U.S., operating more than 2,600 sites of care –
including 145 hospitals and more than 40 senior living facilities – in 19 states and the District of
Columbia. Visit www.ascension.org.
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Former Mercy Hospital Building Reopening Process Moves Forward

Robert Harrington. Submitted photo.

Noble Health Corporation announced yesterday that in the near future they will be deciding whether it is feasible to reopen a hospital at the former Mercy Hospital facility, according to Rob Harrington, Director of  Bourbon County Regional Economic Development Inc.

“There will be two more meetings with the (Bourbon County) Commission and then they will begin talking with the public about the outcome of the feasibility study,” Harrington said.

“Today was a good day for Bourbon County and we are excited to see the process continue,” he said.
“The next phases will be dedicated to renovation costs and I believe labor,” he said.
“The study has been completed, however, it contains information that at this time needs to remain confidential until after the property is transferred to Noble by the county,” Harrington said. “We are hopeful that this will happen in January and February when they begin doing their town hall meetings.”

 

Noble Health Corp. announced in June 2021 that it would explore the possibility of reopening the acute care hospital facility in Fort Scott, according to a previous press release from the corporation.

The corporation, a Kansas City company, engaged in a cooperative agreement with Bourbon County to conduct a feasibility study that could lead to the reopening of the former Mercy Hospital building, located at 401 Woodland Hills Blvd., according to the press release.

The building is located just off Hwy. 69 on Fort Scott’s south side.

Mercy Hospital Fort Scott closed in December of 2018.

Mercy Hospital before it closed in December 2018.

Since that time Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas has leased a portion of the building, and Ascension Via Christi Hospital, Pittsburg,  has leased the emergency department. Those leases end in December 2022. Fort Scott Community College has leased the western part of the building for student housing.

 

To view the prior features on Nobel Health in Fort Scott:

Center Honors Fort Scott’s Frontline Workers

The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes is located a 1 S. Main, Fort Scott.

On July 28, the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes began a new exhibit entitled”Fort Scott’s Frontline Workers”, highlighting groups of local COVID-19 workers.

Hours at the center, located on Main Street at Wall Street in downtown Fort Scott are  Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The exhibition is pictorial with text that honors first responders from four local agencies, health care workers from five local agencies, and educators in five local public and private schools.

Lowell Milken Center’s Frontline Workers Exhibit, July 2021. Submitted photo.
“Contacts were made to all the different agencies, we received input from several administrators and staff,” Cathy Werling, spokesperson for LMC said.
Cathy Werling is a children’s book author at the Lowell Milken Center For Unsung Heroes in Fort Scott, who has published several books depicting unsung heroes at a young child’s level of understanding.

This new exhibit has been made possible with funds received from a Fort Scott Area Community Foundation grant, according to an LMC press release.

“Work began on plans for the project in October of 2020 after we knew we received the Fort Scott Area Community Foundation grant,” Werling said. “Contacting and interviewing all of the various frontline worker’s staff began in January of 2021.”

“The Lowell Milken Center’s Fort Scott’s Frontline Heroes project highlights frontline professions within our community who have been directly dealing with pandemic issues in order to provide safe and direct action for our citizens,” according to the press release.

Law enforcement photo from the exhibit.

The following are recognized: firefighters, law enforcement officers, emergency medical services workers, health care workers from Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas, Ascension Via Christi Emergency Department, Southeast Kansas Multi-County Health Department, and long-term care facilities, assisted/independent living facilities, and local teachers/administrators at schools.

Educators. Photo from the exhibit.

“The LMC believes these groups of workers are truly Fort Scott’s unsung heroes, as they have given so much of themselves to our community’s citizens during the pandemic and continue to do so,” according to the press release. “We encourage all Fort Scott area citizens to support these heroes by viewing the new exhibits at the Lowell Milken Center, sharing words of gratitude and support in the LMC guest book and through the LMC’s social media pages on Facebook – www.facebook.com/LowellMilkenCenter, Twitter – https://twitter.com/LowellMilkenCtr, and Instagram – www.instagram.com/LowellMilkenCtr.”

Emergency Medical Services workers. Photo from the exhibit.

 

About the Lowell Milken Center: The Lowell Milken Center is a non-profit 501 © (3) that works with students and educators within a range of diverse academic disciplines, to develop projects focused on unsung heroes. Once their projects are finished, the student’s unsung heroes are shared in the Hall of Unsung Heroes or on the website, encouraging people all over the world to discover their individual influence and obligation to take actions that improve the lives of others. The Hall of Unsung Heroes is proudly located in Southeast Kansas and showcases some of the top projects developed in collaboration with the Center.