The Healthcare Administrator Award recognizes and celebrates the efforts of administrators who champion infection prevention efforts within their organizations.

Organizations experience extraordinary success in achieving their patient safety goals due to the cooperation of executive leadership and collaboration at all levels. Over the past several years collaboration between the healthcare organization’s executive team and infection preventionists and/or the infection prevention department has increased. As healthcare organizations focus their financial and human resources to eliminate healthcare associated infections, collaboration and innovation among administrators and executives become essential. APIC recognizes the pivotal role these executive leaders play in establishing an organizational culture that enables and supports infection prevention efforts in their facility.

Now accepting 2021 applications!

Submission period: 9/1/20-10/31/20

Questions? Contact us

S. Gail Thurmond, MD, MBA, CSSBB, CPHQ 
Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare 
Memphis, TN

2020 Recipient: S. Gail Thurmond

S. Gail Thurmond, MD, MBA, CSSBB, CPHQ, is the recipient of the 2020 Healthcare Administrator Award. The award recognizes the pivotal role that healthcare leaders play in establishing an organizational culture that enables and supports infection prevention and control. 

Thurmond is senior vice president, clinical effectiveness, and chief quality and patient safety officer, for Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare in Memphis. She believes that healthcare providers at all levels—including physicians, nursing, ancillary teams, vendors, and frontline associates—must make patient safety a top priority. For this reason, she advocates tirelessly for IPC-related funding, training, technology, and regulatory compliance and carefully monitors the efficacy of clinical and quality improvement projects. 

As the executive leader of the healthcare system’s efforts to be a high-reliability organization, Thurmond has supported system-wide mandatory annual influenza vaccination, resulting in 98% compliance; championed appropriate IPC staffing and the CIC® certification; initiated aggressive and innovative campaigns to reduce healthcare-associated infections, including infections from methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Clostridium difficile; and helped implement policies requiring provider ownership of central venous catheters with required daily documentation of necessity. During her tenure, the organization has substantially reduced HAI risks related to C. difficile, immediate-use steam sterilization, catheter-associated urinary tract infection, and central line-associated bloodstream infection. 

The Healthcare Administrator Award is presented at the Opening Plenary of APIC’s Annual Conference. The recipient receives a commemorative plaque, $1,000 in APIC products and services, complimentary registration and travel stipend (up to $1,000) to APIC’s Annual Conference, and a three-minute speaking opportunity at APIC’s Annual Conference.

The candidate must be a member of the healthcare organization’s executive team in a patient care setting who has demonstrated significant and sustained support of the organization’s infection prevention and control team. The results of this ongoing support include evidence documenting:

  1. Processes by which leadership made infection prevention an organizational priority, including revamping the reporting structure, helping support the elevation of the IP position or IP leader within the reporting structure;
  2. Substantial support of the infection prevention program through the provision of resources to achieve organizational goals to target zero (or eliminate) healthcare associated infections;
  3. Organization-wide reduction in one or more healthcare associated infections.
  • Online application
  • Nomination letter* describing why the nominee should be considered for this award
  • Two letters of support from persons who work with the candidate in promoting the organization’s infection prevention and control agenda
  • The nomination letter and letters of support must include a description of the leadership strategies implemented to achieve HAI reduction. Examples include: provides resources, communicates expectations, removes barriers, advocates for IP initiatives, creates environment of accountability.
    • Provide specific examples including data from the last three years reflecting the two years of continuous improvement.

*Either the nomination or reference letter must be submitted by the facility’s infection preventionist.


Year Name
2019 Brian Harte, MD, MHM
Cleveland Clinic Akron General
Akron, OH
2018 Cindy Barnard, PhD, MBA, MSJS
Northwestern Medicine
Chicago, IL
2017 Jodi Vanderpool, MBA, LNHA, CPPS, HACP
St. Luke’s Health System
Boise, ID
2016 Beth Duffy
Einstein Medical Center Montgomery
East Norriton, PA
2015 William Maples, MD
Mission Health System
Asheville, NC
2014 Mark Kehrberg, MD
Ministry Health Care
Menasha, WI
2013 John Calderone, MD
Olympia Medical Center
Los Angeles, CA
2012 Anthony Chavis, MD, MMM
Community Hospital of Monterey Peninsula
Monterey, CA