ICAHN announces 2021 service award recipients

The Illinois Critical Access Hospital recently celebrated the accomplishments of several hospital and community leaders during its Annual Conference and Award Ceremony, held November 18 at the I-Hotel and Conference Center, Champaign.

Those honored included:

  • Alisa Coleman, CEO, Ferrell Hospital, received the President’s Award for her dedicated service as leader of the Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network’s Board of Directors during 2021. “We have all been impressed with Alisa’s visionary leadership and never-ending support to advance our membership, keeping our hospitals viable and strong,” said Pat Schou, ICAHN Executive Director. “But sometimes it is a person’s heart and passion that define the ideal role model. Alisa is one of those people, and we are so thankful for her leadership.”
  • Roby D. Williams, CEO, Hardin County General Hospital, received the Rural Hospital Lifetime Achievement Award for his more than four decades of service to his hospital and local community. “Roby is a quiet leader whose actions and day-to-day support have kept his hospital open and successful through many difficult times,” said Pat Schou, ICAHN Executive Director. “Roby leads from the heart as well as being a smart financial businessman who knows where every hospital penny is earned and spent. He has also established a good patient care reputation for Hardin County and a community healthcare system that maintains access to quality healthcare services.”
  • Ada Bair, CEO, Memorial Hospital, Carthage, received the Presidential Award for Exemplary Leadership and Service. “Ada is the first person to delve into new projects or to put forth the work to apply for new grants,” said Pat Schou, ICAHN Executive Director. “She is the first person to share ideas and experiences with her fellow CEOs and any others needing her vision, and she is the first one to step forward to help her staff, hospital, and community. She embodies the true spirit of rural America, and we commend her for such extraordinary leadership during such challenging times.”
  • Sue Tillotson, RN, Wabash General Hospital, received the ICAHN Service Award. Sue has served as a nurse at Wabash General Hospital for 45 years, half of those years as Obstetrics Supervisor and then as Director of Infection Prevention and Employee Education. She has been an avid supporter of ICAHN’s Professional Education Services program, providing valuable input as a leader for several years on the Nursing Education Committee and helping shape ICAHN’s learning opportunities in general. “Sue’s stand-out quality as a helper is often mentioned by her co-workers as she gives everyone the benefit of the doubt as well as extra time to understand and feel comfortable and confident in their roles,” said Kathy Fauble, ICAHN Professional Education Services Director. “We feel she is definitely deserving of this award, and we know she will be greatly missed when she retires in December.”
  • Illinois Department of Public Health’s 1815 Grant Team received ICAHN’s Special Partner Award. Part of the mission of the 1815 Grant Team is to call attention and address public health challenges such as diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. These challenges have not gone unnoticed, and as a result, ICAHN has been a grant recipient of funding awarded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to the Illinois Department of Public Health. This funding was made available in 2018 for the grant project, “Improving the Health of Americans Through Prevention and Management of Diabetes, Heart Disease, and Stroke (1815).” During this four-year grant period, ICAHN has worked with member hospitals in the southern part of the state to provide education on diabetes and heart disease, develop a community health worker structure, engage pharmacists in providing medication management, and establish disease registries that can better track and monitor patients with heart disease. “This year starts the final year of the grant cycle, and with it an opportunity to recognize the IDPH 1815 Grant Team for its commitment to improving the health and well-being of those living in rural parts of our state,” said Liz Swanson, Assistant Director, ICAHN Professional Education Services. “They are doing wonderful work on behalf of all Illinois’ rural populations and beyond.”
  • Randy “RJ” Jacobs, President, TAG Communications, Inc., received ICAHN’s Special Business Partner Award. TAG has served as an ICAHN business partner for more than a decade, and Mr. Jacobs has personally attended several grassroots advocacy sessions in Washington, D.C. with ICAHN’s Executive Director Pat Schou and several of ICAHN’s member leaders. Most recently, he and his team worked closely with ICAHN to create Board Governance videos, highlighting all aspects of what serving in this capacity means and the goals of the volunteer position within each hospital. “RJ is tops in our book when it comes to media communications. He really is a forerunner and a true business partner in every sense of the word,” said Pat Schou, ICAHN Executive Director. “He and his company have always advanced the message about rural health, and they have assisted us in getting that message out for many years. ICAHN is grateful for their expertise and vision.”