Patrick received a B.S. degree in community health education from Minnesota State University-Moorhead and a M.A. degree in health education and health promotion from the University of Northern Iowa. He entered his career in public health, primarily focused around chronic disease prevention, through two years of work at the South Dakota Department of Health; two years at the American Heart Association National Center, followed by 10 years at the American Heart Association’s Minnesota office; and 11 years at the Dakota County Public Health Department. For the past six years he has worked as a Senior Health Improvement Project Manager in the Center for Prevention at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota. He is also currently in his fourth year as chair of the Minnesota Cancer Alliance policy committee.