THA Honors 26 Healthcare Leaders

Tennessee Hospital Association (THA) honored 26 hospital administrators, employees and volunteers during its 2017 Annual Meeting. The event was held at Music City Center, Nashville, Oct. 11 through 13.

Awards were presented in 18 categories, including distinguished service, president’s award, nurse of distinction and diversity champion. A listing of winners is as follows: 

Distinguished Service Award is the association’s highest honor, and recognizes leadership and service by an individual member, in addition to achievements and contributions to the healthcare industry.

Keith Goodwin, president and CEO, East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, Knoxville, received the award.
He was honored for his commitment to improving children’s healthcare throughout the region, including the implementation of a nationally acclaimed innovative program for infants born with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS).

President’s Award

Tom Gee, CEO, Henry County Medical Center, Paris, was honored for his long-time service with the THA Board of Directors and leadership efforts on behalf of small and rural hospitals.

Healthcare Hero Awards

Stacy Brewington, M.D., physician, Tennessee Heart, Cookeville, was honored for his actions during a Tennessee Tech football game, which helped save the life of a player from Wofford University, the visiting team.

Niki Rasnake, trauma program manager, and Deborah Tuggle, injury prevention/pediatric trauma coordinator, University of Tennessee Medical Center, Knoxville, were recognized for leading a multidisciplinary team and teaching advanced trauma care for nurses (ATCN) in Africa.

Meritorious Service Awards recognize leadership and service by individuals in support of their hospitals and
health systems.

Chief Executive Officer
Kevin Spiegel, president and CEO, Erlanger Health System, Chattanooga, was recognized for his efforts to financially turn around Erlanger Health System in a short period of time. A visionary, he increased Erlanger’s net revenue by 51 percent and invested $216 million of capital. Under his leadership, the system soon will include an 88-bed behavioral health hospital.

Senior Executive
Tish Towns, senior vice president of external relations, Regional One Health, Memphis, was recognized for her excellent service and leadership. Towns led the charge to improve several programs to enhance the patient and guest experience.

Department Heads
Scott Miller, imaging director, Rhea Medical Center, Dayton, was honored for his dedication and commitment to improve patients’ health.

Melahn Finley, director of marketing and public relations, Cookeville Regional Medical Center, was recognized for her strong leadership and service to the hospital during the 27-plus years she has
been employed. 

Board Members
Larry Mauldin, immediate past chair, board of directors, Covenant Health, Knoxville, was honored for his leadership, especially in helping the board maximize its effectiveness through knowledge and service.

Robert Bell, Ph.D., past chair, board of directors, Cookeville Regional Medical Center, was honored for his efforts in strategic planning and quality initiatives.

Sharon Folk, board member, Takoma Regional Hospital, Greeneville, was recognized as a key guiding force in the hospital’s continuing development and success during her 30-year board tenure.

Medical Staff
Thomas Bulle, M.D., interventional cardiologist, Wellmont CVA Heart Institute, Kingsport, was recognized
for his leadership, particularly in expanding and shaping the use of interventional cardiology in the
northeast region.

Jay Patel, student volunteer, Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center, Knoxville, was honored for his participation in the hospital’s “No One Dies Alone” program and his excellent customer service.

Charlene Walker, volunteer, West Tennessee Healthcare, Jackson, was recognized for her tireless dedication and volunteering for 25 years with more than 27,611 hours.

Marilyn Vincent, volunteer, Erlanger Health System, Chattanooga, was recognized for her service as the number-one volunteer for the health system’s “No One Dies Alone” program as well as other volunteer duties she’s performed over the past 12 years with 2,500 hours.

Diversity Champion Award recognizes leaders who have made outstanding contributions in leadership and workplace diversity and inclusion, and demonstrated commitment to a diverse workforce.

Jesse Ehrenfeld, M.D., director of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) health program, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, was honored for being a champion for LGBTI health.

Audrey Gregory, Ph.D., Memphis Market CEO, Saint Francis Healthcare & Saint Francis Hospital, Memphis, was recognized for her leadership in diversity in the community and throughout her career.

Patient Safety Leadership Award recognizes an individual who has taken extraordinary and innovative steps to make patient safety and quality a top priority in their organization.

Pamela Myers, nurse manager, East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, Knoxville, was honored for her leadership approach, which resulted in incredible results in motivating and influencing her team and other departments.

Nurse of Distinction Awards recognize outstanding contributions by registered nurses employed at a THA member hospital or health system.

Executive Nurse of Distinction Award
William Crowe, Jr., medicine service line administrator, Erlanger Health System, Chattanooga, was honored for being an exceptional example of a nurse practitioner and administrator who provides world-class care.

Clinical Nurse of Distinction Award
Nancy Hill, rehabilitation director, Livingston Regional Hospital, was recognized for her patient care priorities and dedication to nursing throughout her career.

American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) Awards

Regent’s Exceptional Service Award
Heather Rohan, division president, HCA TriStar Health, Brentwood, was honored for her strong commitment to ACHE and its values.

Senior-Level Healthcare Executive Award
Alan Watson, president and CEO, Maury Regional Healthcare System, Columbia, was honored for his leadership ability, innovative ideas and the growth of the health system.

Rural Healthcare Executive Award
Lisa Piercey, M.D., executive vice president, system services, West Tennessee Healthcare, Jackson,
was recognized for her commitment to improving healthcare in rural communities and participating in
ACHE activities.

Excellence in Diversity Award
Recognized for advancing diversity, Angel Moore, CEO, Erlanger Health Centers, Chattanooga, has actively engaged an underserved patient population to advance their health and lifestyle choices. She also recruited and engaged a diverse staff of caregivers and support personnel, and partnered with other
mission-oriented organizations.

Early Careerist Award
Elizabeth Wright, vice president of finance, HealthStar, LLC, Knoxville, was instrumental in transforming the East Tennessee Healthcare Executives Affiliation (ETHEA) from a Knoxville-based ACHE chapter to an organization that truly represents the region. Under Wright’s leadership, ETHEA received both the chapter merit and sustainability awards.

A full listing of award categories, recipients and biographical information also is available in the Awards of Excellence booklet.

About THA: The Tennessee Hospital Association was founded in 1938 and serves as an advocate for hospitals, health systems and other healthcare organizations across the state. The initiatives of THA support the efforts of Tennessee’s hospitals to ensure high quality care for the patients and communities they serve.

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