Established on 01.09.2020 by Sally (Nordick) and Dr. Jim (’79) Wagner

Jim is a native of Maddock (Benson County), ND.  He was raised there through 7th grade. He graduated from Alexander Ramsey High School in Roseville, MN.  He graduated from Concordia with majors in biology and chemistry and a minor in math (library nerd). After graduating from Mayo Medical School he completed his surgery residency at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis. He worked as a general and vascular surgeon in Fargo at Dakota Clinic and Innovis Hospital for 18 years, ten of which included kidney transplants between Dakota and Meritcare Hospitals. For the past 14 years, he’s worked at Sanford Bemidji, the last seven years primarily as a vascular surgeon after additional training in endovascular surgery at the Cleveland Clinic. Jim is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Surgery at the University of North Dakota. He is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the Society for Vascular Surgery

Sally was raised on a farm near Rothsay (Wilkin County), MN. She graduated from Rothsay High School. She finished her nurses' training in the second to last class at St. Luke’s School of Nursing in Fargo. She worked as an RN in the ICU, mostly as a night charge nurse, at Dakota, Innovis, and Essentia Hospitals in Fargo. She is certified as a Critical Care Registered Nurse. She now works prn as a house supervisor and One Call nurse at Essentia.

Sally and Jim were married in 2011 and now live on Crystal Lake outside Pelican Rapids, MN. They are members of Zion Lutheran Church on Franklin Lake. 

Sally has four boys, Christopher, Benjamin (Katie), and twins Dana (Erin) and Daniel (Paige). Their daughter-in-law Erin (’17-RN) works in the Peds ICU at Sanford in Fargo.

Jim has four children as well [Andrew, Rachel (’08), Adam, and Mathew (’13)]. Rachel is an OB/GYN physician and Matt is a radiology resident physician. Jim’s sister, Ann (’83), is an OB/GYN physician married to Dave Wasson (’80).

Jim is grateful and feels blessed to have been mentored by Concordia’s excellent academic staff. Their caring attitude and desire for the success of their students were evident every day. Jim is thankful for each and every one of them. He is especially thankful for the education he was blessed to have received from Olaf Torstveit, Howard Osborn, and Dr. Ivan Johnson in biology; Dr. Daryl Ostercamp, Robert Homan, Dr. Gustav Dinga, and Dr. Karl Dierenfeldt in chemistry; Dr. Al Bartz in psychology; and Barbara Glasrud in art history.

Having a passion to honor Jim’s mentors and support the health care professions programs at Concordia, the Wagners wanted to give back in the hope of allowing others to share in this experience. They have attempted to do this by establishing the Sally Wagner, RN, CCRN and James Wagner, MD, FACS, FSVS ’79 Scholarship for Nursing.

The scholarship is awarded by the Office of Financial Aid to sophomore, junior, or senior nursing students from Minnesota or North Dakota with preference given to students from Benson County, ND, and Wilkin County, MN. Additionally, if the opportunity arises, the scholarship will be awarded to a single parent from any state attending Concordia to study nursing, as we understand the additional hardships these families may experience.