UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN River Falls
A 1978 graduate of UW-River Falls, Steve Swensen entered the field of medicine and over the past 20-plus years has established a national reputation as an instructor, researcher and leader in radiology at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.
Current chair of the radiology department, Swensen manages a $400 million budget and oversees 1,200 employees, including 152 physician-radiologists. He has headed up three National Institute of Health grants, worth more than $10 million, that have led to advancements in the early detection, understanding and treatment of cancers and lung disease.
Swensen has guided a technological revolution in digital imaging that has vastly improved diagnostic capabilities. He has recently been tapped to head up a quality and safety initiative for the nationwide network of Mayo-owned institutions. The project is designed to make Mayo the world's first high-reliability health care institution, completely eliminating needless injuries and deaths caused by human error.