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Enabling human understanding is more than a job to the associates of NRC Health. Meet our executive team.

Michael D. Hays


Mike Hays has served as the Chief Executive Officer and a director since he founded NRC Health (National Research Corporation) in 1981.

Prior to launching the company, Mike served as Vice President and as a Director of SRI Research Center, Inc. (now known as the Gallup Organization). His background as founder of NRC Health, and his long successful tenure as Chief Executive Officer, demonstrates consistency in providing direction and vision for the company today.

“We’re championing a way of thinking that’s less about scores and more about insight. Less after-the-fact and more in-the-moment.”

Helen Hrdy


Over the last 20 years, Helen Hrdy has had the opportunity to help hundreds of healthcare organizations better know each person they serve – their behaviors, preferences, wants, and needs enabling Human Understanding and experiences that drive loyalty within healthcare. She has developed and led multidisciplinary teams with a primary focus on partner relationships. Helen has a passion for leading and developing associates who embody service excellence and a customer-centric mindset.

“The work we do with our partners in pursuit of human understanding will improve healthcare—the way it’s designed and delivered—but more importantly, it will improve lives.”

Kevin Karas


Kevin Karas joined NRC Health in December 2010 as Senior Vice President of Finance, and became Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer, and Corporate Secretary in September 2011.

Prior to joining NRC Health, Kevin served as Vice President of Finance for Lifetouch Portrait Studios, Inc., a national retail photography company. In addition, he spent time as Chief Financial Officer for successful firms, including CARSTAR, Inc., an automobile collision repair franchise business, and Rehab Designs of America, Inc., a provider of orthotic and prosthetic services. Previous to those tenures, Kevin was regional Vice President of Finance and Vice President of Operations at Novacare, Inc., a provider of physical rehabilitation services. He began his career as a Certified Public Accountant at Ernst & Young.

“We are focused on being a valued strategic business partner, providing solutions that enable our clients to be successful in meeting their strategic objectives while driving measurable economic results.”