Leader of Planned Parenthood in upper Midwest stepping down

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The president of Planned Parenthood’s affiliate in the upper Midwest announced Friday she is stepping down from her position next year.

Sarah Stoesz oversaw the organization for nearly 20 years and grew it into one of the largest Planned Parenthood affiliates in the country as it expanded from Minnesota and South Dakota to incorporate North Dakota, Iowa and Nebraska, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported. The five-state organization provides health care to more than 100,000 patients each year.

Stoesz does not plan to step down until October while the organization searches for her replacement. Her departure comes as the Supreme Court weighs overturning Roe v. Wade — the 1973 Supreme Court ruling establishing a nationwide right to abortion.

“The non-judgmental care that Planned Parenthood provides is transformative for our patients and our communities,” Stoesz said in a statement.