Meet the 2017 healthcare thought leaders

Safia Aragon

Sofia Aragon, Executive Director of the Washington Center for Nursing

Sofia Aragon is the Executive Director of the Washington Center for Nursing (WCN), a nonprofit organization that is the nursing workforce center for the State of Washington.  Prior to her advocacy and government affairs work, she practiced acute care nursing at Providence-Seattle Hospital (now Swedish Cherry Hill) before moving to the Rainier Park Medical Clinic to practice in the community health clinic in South Seattle where she grew up.  It was there that she was inspired to become an advocate for health services for all communities and pursued a law degree aiming for a career in health policy.

Prior to joining the WCN, she was the Senior Governmental Affairs Adviser for the Washington State Nurses Association, the professional association for the state’s largest health care profession.  The WSNA also collectively bargains on behalf of over 16,000 of the state’s registered nurses. There she managed and developed the WSNA legislative and regulatory programs.

Sophia has served on several boards and commissions including the Children’s Campaign Fund, a political action committee for legislators championing children’s issues, the Asian Community Leadership Foundation, an organization that provides leadership training, the Asian Pacific Americans for Civic Engagement Political Action Committee, the only Asian Pacific Islander PAC in Washington and the Governor’s Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs, an advisory body to the Governor.  She was appointed to the CAPAA by Governor Chris Gregoire in 2009, and re-appointed by Governor Jay Inslee in 2012 and served as chair of the commission from 2012 to 2015. Sofia currently serves as President of the WA State Association of Nurse Attorneys.   

She has earned multiple academic degrees including a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Washington, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Seattle University and a law degree from Loyola University- Chicago School of Law. 

Darcy Jaffe

Darcy Jaffe, Chief Nursing Officer, Harborview Medical Center

Darcy Jaffe is the Chief Nursing Officer and Senior Associate Administrator at Harborview Medical Center, the designated Level I trauma and burn center in Washington, which also serves as the regional trauma center for Alaska, Montana and Idaho. Darcy has worked at Harborview for over twenty years in multiple leadership positions, including Administrator for Psychiatry and Behavioral Health Science. In her current role, she is responsible for nursing practice throughout Harborview and oversees several clinical departments. She is also an adjunct clinical faculty member at the University of Washington’s School of Nursing. In 2014, she was selected as a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Executive Nurse Fellow.

Darcy has provided technical and expert service on mental health outcomes and models of care for national agencies such as the National Quality Forum, Medicare Payment Advisory Commission and University Healthsystem Consortium. An active partner with Washington State and King County in planning and implementing healthcare, her current appointments include the Washington State Governor and King County Executive Community Alternatives to Boarding Task Force, Washington State Speaker of the House Mental Health Task Force, King County Mental Illness and Drug Dependency Oversight Committee, Seattle-King County Opiate and Heroin Addiction Task Force, the King County Health Integration Planning Committee, the University Healthsystem Consortium Chief Nursing Officer Steering Committee, and the Advisory Board for the University of Washington’s School of Nursing--Bothell Campus. A life-time resident of the Puget Sound area, she earned her undergraduate and master’s degree at the University of Washington School of Nursing.  Prior to Harborview, she worked an RN with Public Health Jail Health Services.

Rich Roodman

Rich Roodman, CEO Valley Medical Center System

Rich Roodman carries the distinction of being the longest tenured public hospital system CEO in the country. When Rich joined Valley Medical Center (VMC) as CEO in 1983, it was known as “death valley.”  Thirty-three years later, VMC is now regarded as an exceptional and respected health system and nationally-recognized for outstanding performance and workplace culture.

The VMC health system is the largest public hospital system in the Northwest with a service area of 600,000 people and operates as a “system within a system” as an affiliated component of UW Medicine, with its own Board of Trustees, CEO and Executive Team.  Valley’s relationship within UW Medicine is defined through a Strategic Alliance Agreement which was collaboratively conceived, engineered and implemented through Rich’s vision and tenacity.  Rich credits the Strategic Alliance to his experience and relationships with elected and appointed boards as well as executive teams, staff, organized labor, the community, elected officials and physicians who helped guide the publicly vetted process.

Over the past decade, VMC has been repeatedly recognized as a local, regional and national “Best Place to Work” by the Puget Sound Business Journal, Seattle Magazine and as a “Top 100 Best Places in Healthcare” in the nation by Modern Healthcare magazine.  The VMC has ranked at the top for joint replacement (first in Washington State for outcomes), obstetrics, stroke and other clinical programs.  Healthgrades recognized VMC in the top 5 percent nationally in 2014 for clinical excellence based on quality outcomes for common procedures and conditions.

Rich’s leadership accolades includes; “Emerging Leader Award” from the Association of Western Hospitals, who named Rich as one of three people in the country under age 40 who would reshape healthcare in the 1990s,and top 25 executives in the nation by HealthWeek magazine. He is a sought-after speaker and commentator whose opinion and counsel has been showcased in Tom Peters’ book Thriving on Chaos, Seattle Times’ Pacific Magazine, Seattle Weekly, and business journals, newspapers and professional publications across the country.

Rich holds a Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Missouri’s Business School and a Masters of Health Administration from Washington University’s School of Medicine in St. Louis.

David Sabey

Dave Sabey, President, Sabey Corporation

Dave Sabey is passionate about promoting ideas that positively change the world.  From his early developments of Boeing Electronics’ clean rooms, ADP’s first data center, to providing the world’s first Internet colocation services and Starbuck’s first external roasting plant, Dave is known for breaking new ground, tapping visionary talent and developing people who approach business and science with a fresh perspective.

Today, that commitment to innovation continues through real estate development and investment in high performance data centers, healthcare and life science research and communications. 

One of those ventures is CODONiS, a company he co-founded with Jim Harding of Amazon to develop technology platform services for the life sciences and healthcare sectors and to optimize hyper-computational applications and cloud services designed specifically for major hospitals.

 As the founder of the Seattle Science Foundation, Dave is developing new models to foster greater collaboration between medical scientists, practitioners, and engineers through the use of high bandwidth transmissions.  The Foundation is bringing together some of the world’s most creative and productive thought leaders in medical technology to tackle the world’s healthcare issues and to expand a global healthcare network with Seattle as the “central node.”

As President of the Sabey Corporation, Dave leads the 40-year old family business with a real estate portfolio of commercial properties that now comprise 5.2 million square feet including 3 million square feet of networked data center campuses across Eastern Washington and the United States. These data centers support some of the World’s most acclaimed Internet and technology enterprises, government and universities.

He is a sought-after speaker and sits on numerous boards including the Harvard Medical School, Systems Biology Advisory Council, University of Washington Medical Center Board, past member, University of Notre Dame Business Advisory Council, Seattle University, Board of Trustees, and Washington State Roundtable Board.

Dave grew up in Tukwila where the Sabey Corporation is based. He is a graduate of the University of Washington and Eastern Washington University and holds an Honorary Doctorate of Law from Gonzaga University.