A.J. Bodker of Ponchatoula has retired from the North Oaks Health System
Board of Commissioners following 12 years of service from February 2004
to February 2016.
Bodker’s tenure on the Board of Commissioners and as Chairman of
its Building Committee coincides with numerous milestones for the health
system. Several additions were completed, including North Oaks Diagnostic
Center in 2004; North Oaks Drive in 2006; as well as
North Oaks-Livingston Parish Medical Complex and
North Oaks Surgery Center, both in 2011. Also in 2006, a renovation and expansion of
North Oaks Rehabilitation Hospital was completed. North Oaks Clinic Building and a
five-story hospital tower at
North Oaks Medical Center emphasizing private patient rooms and surgical services opened in 2012.
Completion of an
Emergency Department expansion followed in 2014. Services also received enhancements ranging
from a second cardiac catheterization lab and
robotic surgery to the
North Oaks Physician Groupnetwork of nearly 100 employed primary and specialty care providers and
over 30 clinics. Electronic health record technology was implemented system-wide.
Stroke care certifications were achieved at both North Oaks Rehabilitation Hospital
and North Oaks Medical Center. And, North Oaks implemented a
Shock Trauma Program.
“It has been a pleasure working with Mr. Bodker. He is both a consummate
professional and a gentleman at all times,” affirms North Oaks Health
System Board of Commissioners Chairman Blake Daniels. “His experience
and wisdom have helped guide North Oaks through some of the most tumultuous
times ever in health care. I know that I am a better board member because
of working with him for the last 6 years. He will be missed.”
James E. Cathey Jr., President and Chief Executive Officer of North Oaks
Health System, agrees. “It has been an absolute pleasure working
with Mr. Bodker these past 12 years. He is one of the most dedicated and
loyal individuals I know,” Cathey notes. “He has such a passion
for his hometown of Ponchatoula, Tangipahoa Parish and its people. His
leadership has been extremely helpful in moving North Oaks through challenging
times for our industry, state and nation.”
The Tangipahoa Parish Council appointed Bodker to the North Oaks Health
System Board of Commissioners for a 6-year term effective February 2004.
He was reappointed for a second term in 2010. He served as Vice Chairman
from 2010 to 2013, and from 2014 until his retirement, he served as Chairman.
“It has been an honor and a privilege to serve North Oaks Health
System and the people of our region,” Bodker shares. “I am
humbled, yet proud, to have played a part in North Oaks’ evolution
into one of the finest health systems in Southeast Louisiana with a national
reputation for excellence in patient experience, quality and efficiency.”
A retired educator, Bodker served as Ponchatoula High School’s principal
for 35 years. Just 4 years into his tenure, the Tangipahoa Parish School
System honored him as Principal of the Year in 1967. Prior to becoming
principal, he taught and coached at Ponchatoula High School for 11 years.
From 1988 to 2003, he supervised Southeastern Louisiana University student teachers.
Bodker also is a past member of the Board of Directors for the Tangipahoa
Parish Library and Rosenblum Mental Health Center, past elder of First
Presbyterian Church in Ponchatoula and past chairman of the Retired Teachers
of Tangipahoa Parish. He has belonged to the Ponchatoula Rotary Club since
1964 and belonged to the Ponchatoula Jaycees for 10 years. Additionally,
he is a member of the SLU Alumni Association, having served as President
of the Board of Directors and on the Membership Committee.
The Tangipahoa Parish Council appointed Ponchatoula native, Robert E. Barsley,
DDS, JD, as Bodker’s replacement in December 2015. He began a 6-year
term effective February 1, 2016.
To learn more about North Oaks and the health system’s Board of Commissioners,