The Thoele Award is presented annually to recognize a practicing physician who demonstrates significant leadership to Mercy’s ministry in St. Louis, upholds the mission of the organization and exemplifies the Mercy values of Justice, Dignity, Service, Excellence and Stewardship.
Since 1986, Dr. Pennell has served Mercy patients, initially practicing both vascular and general surgery. In 2002, he became chief of the division of vascular surgery and director of the Mercy St. Louis Vascular Lab. He served as chief of staff from 2010-2019 and chairman of vascular surgery for Mercy Clinic across the metro area. In 2021, he was named chairman of surgery at Mercy St. Louis.
Past award recipients include Tom Applewhite, MD; David Meiners, MD; Chris Veremakis, MD; and Charles H. Rehm, Jr., MD., William Logan, MD, Paul Hintze, MD, and Joan Shaffer, MD.
The award honors Charles E. Thoele, former CEO of Mercy Hospital St. Louis, long-time member and former chair of both the Mercy and Mercy Hospital St. Louis Board of Directors, for his decades of service and vision regarding the importance of physician input into strategy and operational decisions. Thoele passed away in 2016.