Senior Vice President and Chief Innovation Officer
Laura Appel is senior vice president and chief innovation officer at the Michigan Health & Hospital Association (MHA). In her current role, she focuses on healthcare policy, hospital finance, legislation and governance, and also leads the MHA Innovation Council, which seeks to identify and operationalize new activities, processes and products with the goal of maximizing member value. At the federal level, she represents the interests of Michigan hospitals and health systems in both the legislative and regulatory arenas on key issues, including federal healthcare reform and Medicare. She is an expert in auto insurance and legislative policy and has a proven ability to influence legislation and healthcare policy through her understanding of the issues, educating influencers and policymakers, and introducing fresh ideas.
Since joining the MHA staff in 2000, Appel has focused on strategic priorities related to state and federal lobbying and healthcare policy analysis. She served as vice president of federal policy and advocacy, executive director of the MHA Health Reform Resource Center, and senior vice president of strategic initiatives prior to being named to her current position in October 2015.
Before joining the MHA, Appel started her career as a policy analyst at the Michigan Insurance Bureau (now the Department of Insurance and Financial Services [DIFS]) before moving to the Democratic policy staff of the Michigan House of Representatives, where she worked for 12 years, serving as director during her final year. She currently serves on the board and executive committee of the Citizens Research Council, the board of the Michigan Fitness Foundation, and the executive committee for the Coalition to Protect Auto No-Fault based in Lansing. She previously served on the Alliance for Advancing Nonprofit Health Care in Washington, DC.
Appel holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Additionally, she recently received an MBA certificate in design and innovation from Kendall College of Art and Design, Grand Rapids, MI, to further her interest in design as it relates to creating and improving organizational systems and healthcare delivery.