Sarah Strunk was born and raised in Western Springs, Illinois, located approximately 25 miles southwest of Chicago. The youngest of three daughters, Sarah was active in basketball, volleyball, gymnastics, choir, piano, band, children's theater, and Girl Scouts while growing up. She also was a budding writer, inking short stories such as The Piece of Beef and The Adventures of Dora, Laura, and Cora (which only a mother could cherish) and serving as editor of her junior high school newspaper, Bulldog's Bark.
Sarah graduated from Lyons Township High School in 1984, where she served as managing editor of the national award-winning school newspaper, The Lion, and as president of the National Honor Society. Following graduation, she broke a long and proud family tradition of loyalty to The University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and headed south to North Carolina.
Sarah received her bachelor's Degree in Public Policy from Duke University in 1987. She went on to receive her Master of Healthcare Administration with dual concentrations in Finance and Marketing from the School of Public Health at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1991. She recently was appointed Director of Alumni Affairs for the School and Clinical Instructor in the Department of Health Policy and Administration at UNC-Chapel Hill. Prior to that, she was employed at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina for 2 1/2 years as a director in the Corporate Planning and Marketing departments. Previously, she held a variety of strategic and business planning roles at Duke University Medical Center and Bowman Gray/Baptist Hospital Medical Center.
Sarah has had leadership roles in a number of healthcare related professional organizations. She is a board member of the 4000-member AHA Society for Healthcare Strategy and Market Development, and led the development of an award and professional recognition program for the newly merged society. In addition, she served as Secretary/Treasurer, Vice President, President, and Past President of the Carolinas Society for Healthcare Planning and Marketing from 1993-1997. Sarah was also an active volunteer with the UNC School of Public Health prior to assuming her current position. There she served as a Governing Board member for the School's Alumni Association, as an officer for the HPAA Department Alumni Section, as the founder and volunteer director of a mentoring program, and as a guest lecturer, as well as a variety of additional roles.
In her spare time, Sarah participates in a local big sister program and is a consultant for The Global Fund for Children, an organization that teaches children to be productive, caring citizens of a global world. Through her work with The Global Fund for Children, Sarah co-authored Extraordinary Girls, her first children's book. Sarah enjoys reading, cooking, and a variety of adventure sports. Sarah currently resides in Durham, North Carolina.