Registration for either the General Track or the Student Track includes access to the following main events.


Opening Welcome

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

9:00 a.m. - 9:15 a.m.

Join us as we kick-off the conference!

Charting our Course: Minnesota's Next Steps

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

9:15 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Jan Malcolm, Commissioner of Health, Minnesota Department of Health

Commissioner of Health Jan Malcolm will address the need to be adaptable to change as we tackle some of the most pressing challenges for rural health. The conference workshops reflect some of those challenges: telehealth, mental health, leadership and health equity, and healthcare workforce recruitment and retention. She will discuss what Minnesota has been through, where we are now, and share her outlook on the future and how we can move forward.

Wednesday Welcome

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

9:00 a.m. - 9:15 a.m.

Join us as we kick-off day 2 of the conference! 

MRHA Policy Forum

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

  • Mark Jones, Executive Director, Minnesota Rural Health Association 
  • Representative Angie Craig, Congresswoman, U.S. House of Representatives
  • Representative Tina Liebling, State Representative; Chair, Health Finance and Policy, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • Carrie Cochran-McClain, Vice President, Government Affairs and Policy, National Rural Health Association 
  • Mary Gilbertson, Health Care and Aging Outreach Director, Office of U.S. Senator Tina Smith
  • Mary Krinke, Vice President of Government Relations, Minnesota Hospital Association
  • Buck McAlpin, Government Affairs Lead, Minnesota Ambulance Association
  • Sue Abderholden, Executive Director, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI-Minnesota)
  • Steve Gottwalt, Executive Director, Minnesota Association of County Health Plans

The MRHA Policy Forum is designed to address current rural policy issues and their impact on Minnesota’s rural communities, provide information on organizations’ legislative priorities, and facilitate networking opportunities.


  • Provide an overview of Federal policy activities.
  • Share the importance of grassroots advocacy and communication with policymakers.
  • Provide rural health policy updates from Minnesota legislators and Administration.
  • Provide an opportunity for participants to share feedback and input on rural health policy issues.