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2024 Emergent Leader Award

Schafer, Austin

Austin M. Schafer, D.HCML (cand.), BCC, CCISM was selected to receive the National Association of Catholic Chaplains 2024 Emergent Leader Award.

We are grateful for Austin’s service and dedication as he serves as the Director of Pastoral and Spiritual Care and as a mission leader for St. Elizabeth Healthcare in northern Kentucky and southeastern Indiana. He leads a group of over 29 chaplains at 6 different hospitals, all the while pursuing a Doctorate in Healthcare Mission Leadership from Loyola University Chicago. He was particularly recognized for his service by both the Ohio House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate for his dedicated service during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Austin has a strong commitment to enhancing pastoral and spiritual care locally and nationally. He is intentional about encouraging social justice and spirituality in the workplace; skills that have benefited chaplaincy and spiritual care.
Austin has served on NACC interviewing teams for those seeking board certification. At St. Elizabeth Healthcare, he works to create a seamless experience for better coordinated care and better patient interventions and outcomes with a new spiritual care assessment in the electronic medical record. He also works to enhance the professional development of his pastoral and spiritual care team.

Congratulations Austin!