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Gundersen Moundview general surgeon retires



Stephen Paulk, MD, general surgeon retired on October 1 from Gundersen Moundview Hospital and Clinics. Dr. Paulk is pictured with Gundersen Moundview operating room staff including (left to right) Diane Roekle, RN, Cory Soukup, surgical technician, Ann Cwikla, RN, operating room manager, Terri Joy Weichert, RN, Bonnie Weingarten, surgical technician, Charles Hayes, CRNA, Dr. Paulk, Gail Glunn, LPN, Karen Meunier, RN and Janie Hiller, CNA.

For four decades, Stephen Paulk, MD, has practiced his passion: general surgery. He retired from Gundersen Moundview Hospital and Clinics on Oct. 1.

"Dr. Paulk is a skilled and professional surgeon who cares about his patients as well as the staff who work alongside him," says Ann Cwikla, RN, operating room manager at Gundersen Moundview. "His multiple interests have enabled him to relate to patients whether they are young or old, wealthy or underprivileged. Our operating room staff loves working with him.  He will be greatly missed."

Dr. Paulk has provided surgical services at Gundersen Moundview since 1995. He began as a visiting specialty physician in 1995 and was hired as chief of surgery in 2012, expanding surgical services offered at the hospital.

"Dr. Paulk is the first surgeon to provide laparoscopic surgeries at our hospital," says Bonnie Weingarten, surgical technician at Gundersen Moundview. "He is dedicated to our hospital, missing only one day due to illness in the 23 years he has been here."

Throughout his career, Dr. Paulk has been an advocate of colonoscopies, a screening tool for colorectal cancer.

"My father died of colon cancer after repeatedly refusing to be screened," says Dr. Paulk. "He was otherwise in good health. Colorectal cancer often has no symptoms.  I've always encouraged men and women over the age of 50 to talk to their health care provider about annual colorectal screenings, including a colonoscopy. An early screening could save your life."

Dr. Paulk completed his medical degree at the University of Iowa, his internship at Hennepin County Hospital in Minneapolis and his residency at the Mayo Clinic and the University of Iowa. Prior to Gundersen Moundview, he was employed at Divine Savior in Portage and owned his own medical practice. 

"I want to thank all of my patients who put their faith and trust in me for their care over the past 40 years," says Dr. Paulk. "I would also like to thank Gundersen Moundview. I couldn't have asked for a better work environment.  The staff and administrators have treated me well. I'm going to miss everyone." 

In his retirement, Dr. Paulk hopes to enjoy more of his favorite past times including golf, hunting and fishing trips. 

General surgical care will continue to be offered at Gundersen Moundview by Gundersen Health System surgical team members including Tim Minus, MD, general surgeon; Brad Maurhoff, PA; and Matthew Baker, MD, general surgeon. Beginning next year, Travis Smith, MD, general surgeon, will also be seeing patients.

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La Crosse, WI 54601

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