Health nonprofit hires president


Dan Takens. Courtesy Exalta Health

A longtime West Michigan educator will be the new president of a nonprofit that offers health care to uninsured, underinsured and underserved families.

Dan Takens, Byron Center School District superintendent, will take the top role at Exalta Health starting Feb. 3.

Takens will spend a month working in transition with outgoing president Bill Paxton, who is retiring after nearly five years in the role.

Exalta Health provides medical, vision, dental, behavioral and “spiritual care” services to patients of any ethnicity, language, gender, disability, religion or creed, the organization says.

In 2018, Exalta Health served 1,350 medical patients, 1,050 dental patients and provided just over 8,000 total services.

About 17% of its patients have insurance and most use Medicaid.

Takens has spent three decades in public education, the last 11 years at Byron Center. He announced in August that he would retire from those duties on Dec. 31.

He holds an M.A. in education from Calvin University.

“As a board, we believe that his many gifts will be beneficial to Exalta Health and will allow the organization to build on and add to all that has been accomplished since we were founded and more recently, under Bill’s leadership,” said Jeff Stormo, board chair, Exalta Health.

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