Sister Mary Roch Rocklage

Champion of Access to Healthcare For All 

Sister Roch’s remarkable career in health care started nearly 60 years ago as a nursing student. Over the years, she has held positions of leadership including hospital president, the Mercy health system’s first president and CEO, chair of the board, and today, health ministry liaison and board member. She shepherded Mercy’s transition from individual hospitals to a system, and then to a new form of leadership designed to ensure the future of the health ministry with fewer Sisters of Mercy to serve.

When asked how she has chosen her path, Sister Roch said,

“My life has been a continuing calling forth. Our religious community recognizes individual Sisters’ abilities and encourages us. I became involved in organizations when I felt there was a fit and I could do things to help move a situation forward. Anything we have is a gift and we’re to use it to serve others.”

A woman of committed faith with a determined sense of service, Sister Roch has served on numerous boards, committees, task forces and councils – from national organizations like the AHA, CHA and U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, to regional, state and local groups such as the Archdiocese of St. Louis Commission on Human Rights, Healthcare for the Homeless, St. Louis University School of Nursing Advisory Board and Nurses for Newborns. She also has a long list of accomplishments and awards honoring her achievements including induction into Modern Healthcare magazine’s Hall of Fame, the AHA Distinguished Service Award and CHA’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

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Sister Roch Historical Photo
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