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Cadott's Brady Spaeth hooks a pinfall victory over Prescott's Brett Nelson during their matchup at 152 pounds on Saturday in Cadott.

HSHS Sacred Heart CEO search begins

Hospital Sisters Health System (HSHS) does not have a specific timeline for when it will appoint a permanent CEO and president of HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital in Eau Claire, but an HSHS Western Wisconsin Division spokesperson said Thursday, Jan. 11 that the search process has begun.

The hospital is searching for a replacement for Julie Manas, whom the hospital announced was no longer with the organization in a Tuesday, Jan. 9 press release. The hospital plans to work quickly to permanently fill the position, the release said.

Mary Starmann-Harrison, president and CEO of the HSHS system, has been appointed to fill in as the interim CEO. Starmann-Harrison has been in her current role since March 2011.

In an email Thursday, Starmann-Harrison said the change in the hospital’s CEO and president position was mutual.

“We all agreed there was the need for a transition in leadership,” Starmann-Harrison said. “We need to change direction and work with a different strategy going forward.”

Tuesday’s press release also stated that the hospital was “moving in a new direction,” and Starmann-Harrison said HSHS Sacred Heart and HSHS St. Joseph’s will be continue to grow.

“Both HSHS Sacred Heart and St. Joseph’s are well positioned to not only continue to provide quality health care to Chippewa Valley residents but to expand services,” Starmann-Harisson said. “We see growth opportunities, and we continue to provide high-quality, patient-centered care.”

The hospital thanked Manas in its Tuesday press release for her nearly six years of service, which included a recent partnership between the L.E. Phillips Libertas treatment center and the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, which Manas announced in November 2017. Manas also oversaw HSHS Western Wisconsin Division, which includes HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Chippewa Falls.

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Chippewa Falls native wins skydiving gold in Florida

David Arneberg describes his first-ever skydive as “a solo freefall jump.”

“I absolutely loved it,” the Chippewa Falls native remembered.

Arneberg is one of three brothers – all graduates of Chippewa Falls Senior High School and all attendees of the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. – to join Wings of Blue, the Air Force skydiving team.

But Arneberg won big last week in a different category: Along with three teammates, he took home a gold medal in the four-way open formation skydiving event at the U.S. Parachute Association National Collegiate Parachuting Championships in Lake Wales, Fla.

Formation skydiving not only requires a steel backbone, but a range of aerial gymnastics. The team leaps from an aircraft over two miles above the ground, then performs “geometric formations in freefall before opening their parachutes,” a U.S. Parachute Association press release said.

“We’ve been jumping together (for) a little less than two years,” Arneberg said, in a phone interview with the Herald, of his award-winning teammates and fellow academy members Chandler Beachy, Ryan Silva and Joseph Wilde. “We’ve been training together … (using) roller carts; you lay down on your stomach and practice the different formations.” The group often travels, jumping at locations across the country, he said.

His interest began after that first solo jump. Arneberg trained for a year, “spent a summer learning how to teach the same class I was in the summer before,” and eventually joined Wings of Blue. He’s following in the footsteps of his brothers Ben Arneberg, a 2012 academy graduate and Jasper Arneberg, a 2016 graduate. David Arneberg’s father, Tom Arneberg, is also a longtime former Herald community columnist.

David Arneberg attributes his background in Chippewa Falls to his success at the academy and on the team. “All the great teachers and faculty (at the Chippewa Falls Middle School and Chi-Hi) let me build a foundation of … good leadership skills. I think that Midwest work ethic has helped me,” he said.

A systems engineering major, he expects to graduate in 2018 and enter pilot training at Laughlin Air Force Base in Del Rio, Texas.

“Thanks to everyone for the support, teammates, coaches … how much work they’ve put into this,” he said.



This is the logo of the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office, based in Chippewa Falls.

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Cornell, Lake Holcombe, New Auburn school districts would see per-pupil increases under proposed bill

Three Chippewa County school districts would receive additional sparsity aid under proposed legislation, the office of Gov. Scott Walker said in a Thursday press release.

Cornell, Lake Holcombe and New Auburn school districts would see estimated increases of $44,702, $32,078 and $30,836, respectively.

State Rep. John Nygren (R-Marinette) and state Sen. Howard Marklein (R-Spring Green) are the bill’s authors. The legislation would increase sparsity aid by $6.4 million for the upcoming 2018-2019 school year, giving districts that currently quality for sparsity aid a $100 increase per student, from $300 to $400, the press release said.

“Every child in Wisconsin should receive a great education, regardless of where they live or what their parents do for a living,” Walker said.

Lake Holcombe and New Auburn school districts each received a 15 percent cut in state aid in the 2017-2018 school year, according to figures released by the Department of Public Instruction in October 2017. Lake Holcombe received $42,000 less from the state than the previous year, and New Auburn, $45,000 less. Both districts also lost 15 percent of their state aid in 2016.

School membership, property value and school expenditures are all used to calculate the amount of state aid a district receives. State aid does not include the per-pupil funding amount.

The 2017-2019 state budget, signed earlier this year, saw a $200 per student increase for every school in the state.