Growing up in rural West Virginia, Ron and Angie Swearingen saw first-hand the importance of community, often witnessing their families and neighbors supporting each other through various challenges. Also rooted in southern West Virginia with a mission to help others are the Pallottine Sisters, who opened a school and hospital in Richwood, where Ron and Angie grew up.
Now married, Ron and Angie continue to see the importance of community that was ingrained in them as children. Angie Swearingen currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer for St. Mary’s Medical Center (SMMC), which was founded by the Pallottine Sisters in 1924. She also served as SMMC’s Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer for eleven years.
“St. Mary’s is a special place built upon a foundation of faith by the Pallottine Missionary Sisters,” Swearingen said. “As we approach the 100-year anniversary of St. Mary’s, it is exciting to be leading this organization to further the Mission of the Sisters and continue our work with Mountain Health leadership on creating a regional health care destination.”
Not only do the Swearingens support the Huntington region professionally, but also personally.
“Both Ron and I are connected throughout our communities and frequently engage with individuals who have received care or had a friend or family member in need of care,” Swearingen said. “We have a son with special needs and can understand how great the need is for various” services that may not be covered or paid for by insurance, so it’s important to us to monetarily give back for families in need of support or services.”
That desire to give back is why the Swearingens are one of the newest members of the Medallion Society.
“As an employee and a leader, I like the fact that there are other employees and leaders like myself who contribute back to our foundations. The work that we do is more than just a job or career, it is something that we believe makes a difference in people’s lives,” Swearingen said. “Our gift to the Medallion Society helps support various projects Mountain Health Network identifies as needs in our community, and that aligns with its mission and values.”
After two years of living in South Carolina, it was St. Mary’s that brought them back home to West Virginia to raise their two boys. “For that, we are grateful,” she said.
“There is a great need within our communities,” Swearigen said. “If God has blessed us with talents or the financial ability to help others, it is a calling that we believe should be made. We’ve always held the belief that even in times when an individual can’t monetarily give, that perhaps there are opportunities to give of their time or expertise to help others.”
The Swearingens hope that their gift and the gifts of others who continue to support the Foundations support the Hospitals’ current initiatives and help inspire others to become more involved and invested in the work of the health care system, as well as the health of our community.