During a ceremony held at the Avalon Manor in Merrillville on Sept. 26, Sister Marlene received the title of Influential Woman in the healthcare category.

Sister Marlene grew up in Schererville and entered the Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual Adoration in 1964. She attended the St. Alexis School of Nursing in Cleveland, Ohio, and graduated in 1972. She worked in various hospitals within Franciscan until 1994, when she was asked to leave nursing and take on the responsibilities of mission leader.

“My first answer was ‘no’ – I loved nursing, I love caring for patients and hopefully making a difference in their recovery. I soon realized that if I do not believe in our mission, why should anyone else. So, needless to say, I changed my ‘no’ to a ‘yes,’” Sister Marlene said. She has been a vice president for mission integration in three Franciscan Health hospitals and will soon return to Central Indiana to continue her ministry there.

“In earning the title of Influential Woman, Sister Marlene joins the ranks of numerous other prominent alumni that have collectively helped shape and define Northwest Indiana. They come from many different types of industries and backgrounds, but they have all left an indelible mark on regional companies and communities,” said Erica Dombey, Northwest Indiana Influential Women Association executive board chair.