The American College of Healthcare Executives is honoring two healthcare veterans this year with its highest honor, the Gold Medal Award.
The awards are to be given this week during the ACHE's annual congress, which runs through March 29 in Chicago.
The recipients of the 2001 awards are William Head, 57, director of military health services and strategic planning at 247-bed Fort Walton Beach (Fla.) Medical Center, and James "Terry" Townsend, 66, president and chief executive officer of the Texas Hospital Association.
The Gold Medal Award recognizes healthcare leaders who have made significant contributions to the field throughout their careers.
Head, a retired U.S. Air Force colonel, is the liaison between Fort Walton Beach Medical Center and two local Air Force bases. At the medical center, he helped secure certificate-of-need approval for a new open-heart surgery program and developed courses to help employees provide better customer service.
Townsend's notable achievements include raising the profile of the Texas Hospital Association as a well-respected healthcare policy advocate at both the federal and state levels. Townsend has been the leader of the THA since 1987, during which time the association has been active in hospital payment-relief issues and healthcare fraud and abuse.
Both men are active in the ACHE and several other healthcare associations.