Press Release

AHA Award of Honor to be Presented to DOuglas J. Leonard

The American Hospital Association (AHA) will present its 2017 Award of Honor to Douglas J. Leonard, president of the Indiana Hospital Association (IHA), for making outstanding contributions to improve the health status of individuals, communities and the nation. The award, presented on May 8 as part of the AHA’s Annual Meeting, is given to individuals or organizations in recognition of exemplary contributions to the health and well-being of our nation through leadership on major health policy or social initiatives.

At IHA, Leonard guided Indiana hospitals through the implementations of the Affordable Care Act and the state’s Medicaid alternative, strengthened Indiana’s Patient Safety Center and launched several patient safety campaigns. Before joining IHA in 2007, he spent 30 years in administration at Columbus Regional Hospital in Indiana, the last 10 as CEO. During his tenure as CEO, the hospital became the first Magnet Hospital for Nursing in Indiana and was awarded the AHA Quest for Quality Prize.

“Doug is a trusted and exemplary hospital statesman,” said AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack. “His work demonstrates both a desire to ensure patients receive high quality care and also a commitment to tireless advocacy on behalf of Indiana patients, communities and hospitals. I have no doubt that his leadership and core belief in making communities healthier contributed to Indiana’s successful expansion of the Medicaid program.”

In his extensive AHA and national contributions, Leonard is a strong participant and a good strategic thinker, with a patient focus. He served on Regional Policy Board 5 (both as a hospital CEO and as a state hospital association executive), Hospitals in Pursuit of Excellence National Leadership Council (2009-2010), AHAPAC Steering Committee (2011-2013), Committee on Performance Improvement (2011-2013), Health Research & Educational Trust board member (2014-2017), Committee on Research (2014-2016) and Operations Committee (2015-2017). 

A native of South Bend, Ind., Leonard earned his bachelor's degree in business administration and his master's in health administration from Indiana University. He is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives, and he serves on several local health-related boards.

Previous Award of Honor winners include organizations such as the Kaiser Family Foundation, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Ohio Hospital Association’s Energy and Sustainability Program, Reach Out and Read, Ronald McDonald House Charities®, the Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare, the Institute for Safe Medication Practices and Habitat for Humanity. Individuals such as Spencer Johnson, past president of the Michigan Health & Hospital Association in Okemos, Mich.; Rhonda Anderson, R.N., DNSc, CEO, Cardon Children’s Medical Center; George Halvorson, chairman and CEO of Kaiser Permanente; and Donald M. Berwick, M.D., former administrator of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and former president and CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement have also been honored.

About the AHA

The AHA is a not-for-profit association of health care provider organizations and individuals that are committed to the health improvement of their communities. The AHA is the national advocate for its members, which include nearly 5,000 hospitals, health care systems, networks, other providers of care and 43,000 individual members. Founded in 1898, the AHA provides education for health care leaders and is a source of information on health care issues and trends. For more information, visit the AHA website at

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