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Elijah Haahr named executive director of new Noble Health Foundation

Former House Speaker Elijah Haahr has been named the executive director of the new Noble Health Foundation with the goal of breaking down barriers to rural health care. 

An arm of Noble Health Corp, the foundation will support education, development, training, and implementing health care options. Haahr said he will be spending time raising money and meeting with school superintendents and college presidents to better understand the health care needs — from counseling to cardiovascular screenings to physicals — in their communities. 

“I grew up on a farm and spent eight years in the legislature trying to improve and protect rural Missouri,” Haahr said. “Having the chance to lead a foundation that is solely focused on improving rural health care is an incredible opportunity. 

“My focus is primarily going to be on how we can spend nonprofit money in real communities and figure out what specific silos they need help in,” Haahr added of the brand new role. 

Noble Health Corp started just two years ago and has already brought two hospitals to Missouri (Fulton and Mexico) along with several clinics throughout the state. 

“We are very happy to welcome Elijah to the Noble Health team,” Don Peterson, executive chair of Noble Health, said. “As an accomplished attorney and public policy professional, we believe Elijah will have a substantial and positive impact on the communities in which Noble operates.” 

Haahr, 38, served in the Missouri House from 2013 to 2021, representing HD 134 in Greene County as a Republican. He also served as the House speaker for multiple years during his tenure in the legislature — and was the youngest House speaker in the nation. 

While Haahr will not be practicing law in his new role at the foundation, he said he will maintain his licenses in Missouri and Oklahoma. He had worked for Kutak Rock in Springfield as part of the firm’s products liability division. He has tried cases in federal and state court, including having argued before the Southern District Court of Appeals. 

Noble Health Corp is headquartered in Kansas City. Haahr will remain in Springfield with his four children.