Paul J. Thein, ED.S.
Manager / Owner - Senior Vice President for Advancement & Partnerships
ED.S. Pittsburg State University – Major: Education Leadership; Pittsburgh, Kansas
M.S. United States Sports Academy – Major: Sport Management; Daphne, Alabama
B.A. University of Minnesota Duluth – Major: Physical Education; Duluth, Minnesota
B.S. Minnesota State University, Mankato – Major: Liberal Studies; Mankato, Minnesota
A.A. Rochester Community & Technical College-Major: Liberal Studies; Rochester, Minnesota
Paul Thein leads the Core Health Partners movement with over 30-years of successful experience in providing oversight for community education and fitness. Paul’s community wellness and education experience, includes direct facility oversight, community outreach and partnerships, and serving as a college instructor in the areas of health, wellness and physical education.
Thein views the YMCA as a platform to strengthen community. Click Here to watch Paul’s video-interview with Naples Daily News, where he exposes his personal vision for strengthening the community through the platform of the YMCA.
BIOGRAPHY OF PAUL THEIN
A native of Rochester (Minnesota), Paul Thein was a scholarship athlete and selected as team captain of the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) wrestling team before earning his BA degree in physical education.
Thein qualified In for the National wrestling tournament in both his junior and senior year and was selected to represent the United States in international wrestling competition in the former Soviet Union.
After closing his career as an athlete, Thein started his professional career in coaching at his alma mater, the University of Minnesota Duluth where he gained employment as an assistant coach in the men’s athletic department and supervisor overseeing the athletic department’s weight room. Gaining recognition for his contributions in the coaching arena, Thein was recruited for the head coach position at Rochester Community and Technical College, RCTC (Minnesota) and accepted a position in the RCTC’s Health, Physical Education and Recreation department to coach college wrestling and serve an assistant on the football staff. As the Head Coach of RCTC wrestling, his teams earned a #1 National ranking in NJCAA wrestling and his contributions to the RCTC Football staff helped earn a Minnesota State Community College football championship title.
During Thein’s tenure he completed a second bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies from Minnesota State University, Mankato and a master’s degree in Athletic Administration & Management from the United States Sports Academy (Alabama).
THEIN’S LEADERSHIP IN HIGHER EDUCATION
With credentials and experience, Thein’s career in higher education led him to pursue higher education administration in the Kansas Community College education system. Thein started his path of higher education administration as the Director of Student Life at Coffeyville Community College (Coffeyville, Kansas) then transitioned to Dean of Students at Neosho County Community College (Chanute, Kansas). As a leader in student services, Thein implemented enrollment growth strategies for these colleges that included: new services, sports and academic programing. At both Colleges in Kansas, Thein’s oversight included renovating and invigorating the college’s community wellness centers. Proving his talents in the Kansas Community College System led to his peers to elect Thein as President of the Kansas Student Services Association. While in Kansas Thein earned an Educational Specialists Degree in Leadership from Pittsburg State University (Pittsburg, Kansas). Paul eventually moved on to a Vice President position within the California public community college system (Feather River College in Quincy, Ca.). While at Feather River College (FRC), Thein’s style of collaborative leadership led to new partnerships and several new education programs funded through the United States Department of Education. His accomplishments in the area of providing opportunities and support to those underrepresented in higher education earned just over 10-million dollars of Federal Department of Education to the FRC . Under Thein’s tenure he led the effort to expand extracurricular activities and offerings, including several new inter-collegiate sport programs and the acquisition of a large community-based wellness center. The success of these initiatives led to the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) selecting Paul Thein as a National Presenter at their National Conference.
THEIN’S ACCOMPLISHMENTS IN THE YMCA MOVEMENT
With over 15-years of higher education experience, Thein transitioned his career to become a leader in the YMCA movement; first serving as CEO of the Waycross Georgia YMCA and later the Naples Florida YMCA. Through the same methods of partnership and innovation, Thein grew the YMCA membership. Providing new clinical and health education services and programs to the community through the YMCA became a common theme. While serving the YMCA of Waycross, Georgia he was responsible for bringing in the Mayo Clinic Education Center inside the walls of the YMCA and an education classroom sponsored by the Regional State Community College. Thein’s vision of expanded access to the YMCA’s fitness facility, led to opening the Y’s fitness facility 24/7 using technology. The community’s response to these unique programs and expanded access led to large growth in YMCA membership (three-fold) and revenue (two-fold).
Soon Thein was recruited to re-energize a YMCA in Naples, Florida. Under Thein’s leadership he championed as a capital campaign to rebuild the Naples YMCA from a fitness center to a Healthy Living Campus that was fully accessible to the community for fitness 24/7. Thein led a campaign that raised $12-million to rebuild and renovate the YMCA.
When complete the new amenities at the Naples YMCA included; a Diabetes Education and Resource Center, an Epilepsy Resource Center, a Culinary Teaching Kitchen, full service Pediatric Medical services (including therapy), Mixed Martial Arts/ Self Defense Studio (named after Dan Gable), as well as an artificial turfed roof top.
In result, the Naples YMCA was bestowed with the Grand Aurora Award for the Best Recreational Facility in the SE United States. Thein earned the 2016 Rotarian Citizen of the Year and a selection by Naples Illustrated Magazine as one of 7-Supermen of SW Florida.
STRENGTHENING THE COMMUNITY THROUGH CORE HEALTH PARTNERS
In order to expand on the effort and relationships, Thein resigned his position as CEO of the Naples YMCA in 2018.
He joined a group of visionary pioneers from the YMCA’s healthy living movement (Community Health Partners of Clive Iowa). Together they shared a vision to expand a partnership model of medical-integration and clinic to community partnerships that would strengthen community. A year later that vision resulted in 8 CHP facilities in the Des Moines Iowa region and first two-venues opening in Florida. The Florida facilities include the Academy of Sanchez Casal and the YMCAs of South Collier (Marco Island).
Thein loves his role as the Senior Vice President for Advancement & Partnerships for Core Health Partners. The flexibility has allowed him to strengthen past relationships and grow new ones in pursuit of community well-being. Paul Thein service to community included services on the board of directors for the Special Olympics Florida and Meals of Hope, an organization focused on feeding the hungry.
Paul is the founder of Core Health Partners and he is joined by family members who have invested in his vision to help build Core Health Partners as a mechanism tool to help the improve the community partnerships, programs, and information needed to improve the wellbeing of persons living with chronic disease.