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Hospital Board Chair Lynn Harris, DMD, Earns National Award for Grassroots Leadership

Hospital news | Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Contact: Mardi Ford

Grande Ronde Hospital was recently notified by the American Hospital Association (AHA) that GRH Board Chair Dr. Lynn Harris has won a 2010 Grassroots Champion Award.

In partnership with state hospital associations, last week the AHA honored Dr. Harris along with 51 other individuals with its Grassroots Champion Award for exceptional leadership in support of a hospital's mission.

According to the notification letter, Dr. Harris earned this special recognition for his dedication to the hospital mission, on both the local and the national level. The award singles out one hospital leader from each state who, over the previous year, effectively delivered the hospital message to elected officials; helped broaden the base of community support for hospitals; and advocated tirelessly on behalf of patients, hospitals and the community.

“I hope the community will join me in congratulating Lynn.I am so proud that he serves as our Board Chair. He works tirelessly as an advocate for Grande Ronde Hospital, continuously striving to expand and improve health care services to our communities.Lynn effectively reaches out to our congressional delegates to help them understand how the decisions they make at the national level impact small, rural hospitals like ours. He is very deserving of this recognition,” said Jim Mattes, Hospital president and CEO.

Dr. Harris was first appointed to the Hospital Board in January 2005 and served three years in the capacity of Vice-Chair before becoming Board Chair in January 2010.

Describing his service on the hospital board as “challenging, yet very rewarding,” Dr. Harris was quick to credit the other 10 Board members who also volunteer their time to serve the community in this capacity along with the Hospital’s leadership team.

“The Board is comprised of a very diverse group of talented, local people who care deeply about the hospital and the community. Their expertise and tireless efforts inspire me to do my best. Our Hospital administrator (Jim Mattes) is one of the best in the nation and has put together an executive team that continues to earn our small, rural hospital both state and national recognition. It is a privilege to be a part of such a ground-breaking and pioneering group of leaders,” Harris said.

The AHA Grassroots Champion Award was created to recognize those hospital leaders who most effectively educate elected officials on how major issues affect the hospital's vital role in the community, who have done an exemplary job in broadening the base of community support for the hospital and who are tireless advocates for hospitals and their patients.

"We depend upon strong local voices to help tell the story of hospitals as cornerstones of the communities they serve," said Rich Umbdenstock, AHA president and CEO. "This award is a small token of our appreciation for the hard work and dedication of these individuals to improving health and health care in America. We want others to be inspired by their commitment to making the hospital voice heard in Washington."

The 2010 Grassroots Champions’ achievements will be honored at the 6th annual “Breakfast of Grassroots Champions” on Tuesday, April 12, during the AHA Annual Membership Meeting, April 10-13, 2011 in Washington, D.C.