MBA grad helps lead Cone Health

Posted on August 28, 2019

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Joan Evans '94

Visionary. Strategic. Developer of talent.

Joan Evans ’94 MBA embodies the qualities one would expect from a high-level executive of a major health care delivery system. What may surprise you is her proclivity for provocative thinking.

“If anyone will ask the unasked question, it’s me,” says Evans, chief of staff at Cone Health.

That may just be her nature; but the other qualities? At least in part, she credits UNCG’s Bryan School of Business and Economics.

Evans held a director-level position at Cone Health when she entered the MBA program, and she knew the next step would require an advanced degree. She’d attended UNCG as an undergraduate, and she knew of the academic rigor of UNCG’s programs. 

Now, she’s adamant that it was the right choice, and it’s a choice that keeps giving.

“To those of us who hire MBA grads, it is so evident the quality of education and program that UNCG is producing,” says Evans, a Bryan School MBA advisory board member. 

She recalls her favorite class: strategic management with Dr. Jim Weeks, dean from 1990 to 2011.   

“It was the strategy and human-resources classes that really sparked my interest in thinking how I could apply them to my current role, and how I could think about shaping my future career based on what I was really interested in,” Evans says. “The Bryan School broadened my perspective on what leadership was about and the difference I could make in an organization.”

Evan’s advice to future business leaders?

• Find an advocate, find a mentor, find someone who can help connect you and develop your network.

• Get really clear about your unique gifts and strengths.

• Think about how you can make your organization better because of your gifts, talents, and strengths.

• Know the unique things you bring to the table. Know your brand. Find an organization that fits with that.

This story originally appeared in UNCG Magazine. To read more stories about UNCG alumni making an impact, visit


Story by Elizabeth L. Harrison
Photography by Martin W. Kane, University Communications


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