• Our Leaders

  • Administrative Team

  • Sheri Trahern, C.P.A., M.B.A., F.A.C.H.E.
    Chief Executive Officer

    Sheri TrahernSheri leads the executive team at St. Thomas More (STM) as Chief Executive Officer (CEO), a position she has held since 2013.  She continues to spend her entire career with Centura Health, having served in various roles since her start as a junior accountant at St. Joseph Hospital in 1986.  She is a perfect example of how hard work and dedication can lead to career growth.  She has held many roles with Centura Health – STM and St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center in Pueblo, CO – including junior accountant, senior accountant, chief accountant, accounting manager, controller, director of decision support, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Administrative Officer.   

    Now as CEO, she’s responsible for providing overall operational leadership of the strategic operations and daily planning of the entire STM organization which includes the hospital, Centura Health Urgent Care Canon City, Progressive Care Center and partnership with the St. Thomas More Physician Group.  She represents STM on the Centura Health Executive Council, develops strategic initiatives and tactics for each, and is involved in the physician employment/affiliation strategy.  She believes strongly in community relations and business partnerships; therefore, she leads a Community Collaborative group in Canon City, and is our lead for STM’s Community Health Needs Assessment and Community Health Improvement Plan.

    St. Thomas More benefits from Sheri’s vision, dedication, and health care experience in both finance and administration. She is a passionate leader who is proud to be among the health care professionals within our organization who provide our communities with compassionate, quality health care and wellness services.  Her background includes leading a diverse group of departments such as clinical areas and physician practice management.  She has a proven record of consistently achieving strategic goals in all aspects of leadership, utilizing her skills in analysis, creating effective work teams, transformational coaching, rapid decision making and process improvement.

    Her education includes a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from the University of Southern Colorado (now Colorado State University-Pueblo), and a Master's degree in Business Administration, Finance and Accounting from Regis University. She holds a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license, is a member of the Healthcare Financial Management Association, and is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives. 

    Active in the community, Sheri has served many local and regional organizations as a board member or supporter. Her current commitments include serving as a board member for the Colorado Hospital Association, Canon City Chamber of Commerce, Pueblo Community College Fremont Campus Advisory Board, El Pomar Foundation – Central Peaks Council, Fremont Economic Development Corporation and Canon City High School Booster Club member.

    Kern Low, M.D., F.A.A.F.P.    
    Chief Medical Officer

    Dr. Kern Low, CMODr. Low joined St. Thomas More in January 2015 as Chief Medical Officer after serving the Centura Health Physician Group as medical director for primary care in the South State Operating Group (SSOG), which includes Penrose-St. Francis Health Services in Colorado Springs, Colo., St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center (SMC) in Pueblo, Colo., and STM.  

    He has been practicing medicine for over 25 years including clinic, inpatient and obstetric care, and brings a wealth of experience in the medical, clinical teaching and leadership realms. He was a partner at Comprehensive Family Care Center in Pueblo from 1998-2011, and held various roles at Southern Colorado Family Medicine, a clinic located at SMC, from 1998 to 2013 including faculty, medical student coordinator and clinic director. He earned the SCFM Outstanding Faculty Award and was named the 2012 Colorado Family Physician of the Year award from the Colorado Academy of Family Physicians (CAFP). 

    He has served the CAFP as both President and Board Chair. He represented the Colorado Chapter by serving on the Congress of Delegates for the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), and is currently a Fellow of the AAFP. He was the 2010 Chair of the Subcommittee on the Annual Scientific Assembly Planning in Denver, Colo.  

    Dr. Low earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychobiology with honors in 1988 at the University of Southern California and his medical degree in 1992 from the Chicago Medical School. He completed an internship and residency in Family Medicine in 1993 and 1995, respectively, from Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. 

    As CMO, Dr. Low is responsible for providing leadership, strategic direction and operational management of physician services and medical staff administration. He collaborates with our leadership team to develop strategic plans and policies, provide a multidisciplinary approach to clinical outcome management, and build effective relationships between the hospital and its medical staff to produce safe, quality care and excellent clinical outcomes. He also works closely with our SSOG CMO and Centura Health Chief Medical Executive to meet system-wide strategies, goals, objectives and standards.  

    Highlights of his military career include: Officer-In-Charge, Camp Casey Troop Medical Clinic, Korea; Meritorious Service Medal; Expert Field Medical Badge; Army Commendation Medal and Family Physician at Evans Army Community Hospital, Ft. Carson; and commissioned as a major in the U.S. Army Medical Corp. 

    Jim Woodard, B.S.N., M.B.A.
    Chief Nursing Officer

    Jim Woodard, CNOJim joined St. Thomas More (STM) as Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) in January 2016.  Jim brings a vast knowledge base of clinical and executive nursing experience spanning 15 years.   

    Jim joins us from Porter Adventist Hospital (PAH) where he served in progressive nursing leadership roles since 2005 including nurse manager, nursing director and associate CNO.  His background is in medical-surgical and behavioral health nursing with an emphasis in quality improvement, risk and change management.  He helped PAH become the first Centura Health hospital to earn the distinguished American Nurses Credentialing Center Magnet Designation Award. 

    Prior to joining Centura Health, he served in various roles at Devereux Colorado Home/Cleo Wallace Centers in Westminster, CO as director of performance development, executive director of nursing and campus administrator from 1997 to 2005.  He also served Denver Health as nursing operations manager from 1991 to 1997. 

    Jim earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology at the University of Northern Colorado, a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing at Regis University, a master’s level certificate in forensic nursing at Bethel College of Nursing, and a Master’s degree in Health Care Operations from Regis University.  He will also pursue a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree in the near future.

    Jim provides leadership over the daily operations of nursing services across our continuum of care including the emergency department, surgical services, ICU, medical/surgical inpatient unit, The Birth Center, wound care, clinical informaticist, staffing, care coordination and patient education. He’s responsible and accountable for leading these clinical operations by collaborating with nursing management and other health care team members in providing safe, quality patient care.

    He plays an active role with the St. Thomas More Community Board, Patient/Family Advisory Council, senior and hospital leadership and medical staff.  He represents STM at Centura Health Nursing Council and collaborates with south state operating group nurse executives to continue to drive the nursing profession forward.   He also provides administrative direction and oversight to respiratory care, cardiac rehab and cardiology, and is responsible for maintaining physician relations, inspiring clinical caregivers through solicitation of input/feedback, and implementing action plans to improve delivery of patient care. 

    Gwyneth Howard, M.B.A, C.H.F.P.
    Vice President of Finance

    Gwyneth-Howard2Web.pngGwyneth was named Vice President of Finance for St. Thomas More Hospital in January 2013.

    Gwyneth has over 15 years of Decision Support, Accounting and Finance experience in the health care industry. She’s been with Centura Health for 14 years and has held the titles of Controller and Senior Accountant for St. Thomas More. Most recently, she served as the Administrative Director of Accounting and Finance for both St. Thomas More and St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center in Pueblo since 2010.

    She has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration (Accounting) from the University of Southern Colorado in Pueblo (now Colorado State University – Pueblo) and is a Certified Healthcare Financial Professional through the Healthcare Financial Management Association.

    Gwyneth is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day financial operations at St. Thomas More and assists with strategic initiatives designed to increase our financial performance, quality and breadth of services. She leads St. Thomas More’s annual fiscal planning cycle, including strategic, capital and operational budget processes. Gwyneth also facilitates accurate productivity reporting and benchmarking.

    Dennis Bruens, M.P.A, F.A.C.H.E.
    Vice President of Operations

    Dennis Bruens WebDennis, a seasoned health care leader with 21 years of balanced experience in operations, strategy, planning and finance, joined St. Thomas More in December 2014. He has a proven track record of growth, fiscal responsibility, patient satisfaction, and relationship-building with key stakeholders. He has a strong passion for community involvement, having served on various boards and service organizations.

    He earned an Associate of Arts degree in Broadcasting from Southeast Community College in Nebraska in 1991, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications with an emphasis on public relations and a minor in marketing from Mesa State College in Grand Junction, Colo. in 1993, and a Master of Public Administration degree in Health Care Policy from the University of Colorado at Denver in 1995. He is also a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and Association of Community Cancer Centers, and is a Fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

    Dennis served as director of the Penrose Cancer Center and led the Penrose-St. Francis Behavioral Health Program in Colorado Springs since 2006.  Prior to that, he served in various roles at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, Colo. From 1993 to 2006 including director of the San Juan Cancer Center, director of hospitalist program, director of planning and business development, hospital planner and public relations assistant.  

    As a member of the STM administrative team, Dennis is responsible for providing strategic and operational leadership for several service lines and departments at STM to meet the changing market demands. He’ll develop practices to ensure sustained operational effectiveness and is responsible for enhancing, developing, and maintaining strong staff, physician, and community relations. He has a strong background in customer service and leadership training, and will be instrumental in leading STM to improved patient satisfaction.

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