Porter chief wins national honor

MIDDLEBURY — The American Hospital Association (AHA) has recognized Porter Medical Center President James L. Daily with its 2012 Grassroots Champion Award.
This award is given annually to one hospital leader from each state to recognize his or her efforts to “effectively deliver the hospital message to elected officials and help broaden the base of community support for community hospitals and advocate tirelessly on behalf of their patients and community,” according to Rich Umbdenstock, president of the AHA. “You have earned this special recognition through your dedication to the hospital mission, on both the local and the national level, and we are looking forward to thanking you and sharing our deep appreciation for all that you do every day,” Umbdenstock wrote in the letter announcing this award.
Daily will travel to Washington, D.C., in May as the guest of the AHA to receive this prestigious award at the organization’s annual meeting recognizing award recipients from across the United States.
Daily has been president of Porter Medical Center since 1984, and has led the organization through many significant changes, challenges and growth in both services and facilities.
“Construction of the 118-bed Helen Porter Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, complete renovation of many significant clinical areas of Porter Hospital, introduction of state-of-the-art technology, establishment of the new Surgical Care Center and Birthing Center, transition to “Critical Access Hospital” status and the establishment of a primary care network throughout Addison County are only some of the highlights of a long and significant career here in Addison County,” said PMC Board Chair Ann Hanson. “Jim has led Porter Medical Center through many turbulent times and through many successful accomplishments, always keeping our mission, our patients and our community at the center of his vision for Porter,” she added.
Daily currently serves as chairman of the Vermont Association of Hospitals and Health Systems, and recently completed his term on the Regional Policy Committee of the American Hospital Association. During his time in Vermont, he also has served on a number of statewide and local boards including as chairman of the Addison County Chamber of Commerce and member of the Addison County Economic Development Corp. and the Vermont Business Roundtable. He also serves as a member of the Middlebury Lions Club.
Daily’s award comes on the heels of another prestigious award given to PMC board member Gerry Gossens, who was named Trustee of the Year in December by the New England Healthcare Assembly.
Reflecting on his “Grassroots Champion Award,” Daily points to those who have worked alongside him to advance the mission of Porter, including members of the board and many other volunteers, the medical staff, clinical staff and other Porter employees who work hard every day to provide the outstanding care that Porter Hospital has come to exemplify.
“Strong organizations draw upon the strength of many individuals who all contribute based on their skills and experiences,” Daily said, “and Porter Medical Center has grown and become a better organization over time because of our volunteer board members, our physicians, nurses and other clinical staff — but also because of the people who work behind the scenes … the employees who keep our facilities clean and maintained, who prepare our food, who manage our financial services, and many others — all of the people who work hard every day to serve our patients and residents.
“I am proud of the work we have accomplished together in the past during my career at Porter, and proud of this recognition by the AHA,” Daily added. “But I am most proud of the work we are doing every day to ensure access to necessary and high quality health care for our neighbors, meet their immediate needs 24 hours a day every day, and improve the health status of our community.”

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