Jim Bernstein Health Leadership Dinner Honors Healthcare Heroes, Raises Vital Funds to Support Access to Quality Healthcare in Rural Communities

CARY — The Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation is pleased to announce that the 14th Annual Jim Bernstein Health Leadership Dinner raised nearly $51,000 with the support of participants, donors and sponsors. 

Each year, FHLI brings together more than 300 healthcare professionals from all across North Carolina and beyond to celebrate the legacy of Jim Bernstein and the work being done to advance healthcare access and community health in our state. All funds raised will be used to support the Jim Bernstein Fellows program, which prepares emerging health leaders to work in and improve the health of rural and underserved North Carolina communities. Funds will also be used to provide scholarships to families employed in our state’s rural health clinic through the Jim and Sue Bernstein Health Center Scholarship Program.

The dinner serves as an opportunity to recognize outstanding individuals for their extraordinary service toward the betterment of their communities. Dr. Robin Gary Cummings, Chancellor of The University of North Carolina at Pembroke, was awarded the Jim Bernstein Community Health Career Achievement Award for his lifetime efforts to improve health, education and well-being for everyone in his community. Dr. Susan Mims, MD, MPH, Vice President for Children’s Services and Clinical Genetics and Personalized Medicine at Mission Health, and Chief of Pediatrics for Mission Children’s Hospital, was the recipient of the Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation Community Achievement Award, testament to her vital role in advancing children’s health initiatives. Sarah Thach, MPH, Assistant Director of the UNC Gillings School Master of Public Health Program in Asheville, and Adjunct Faculty with the Public Health Leadership Program at UNC Gillings School of Public Health, was awarded the Jim Bernstein Health Leadership Distinguished Fellow Award for her exceptional representation as an alumnus of the ideals of the Bernstein Fellows program.

The evening began with a reception to welcome the 2019 class of Bernstein fellows, emerging leaders who will embark on their two-year term and continue the important work of improving the health of North Carolina’s underserved communities. The new fellows are:

In addition, the event celebrated the past service and leadership of outgoing Director of the Bernstein Fellows Program Tom Bacon, who has been guiding the strategic direction of the fellowship since October 2015. Tom presented the following graduating class of Jim Bernstein Health Leadership Fellows with their achievement awards:

The 15th Anniversary Jim Bernstein Health Leadership Dinner will be held at the McKimmon Center in Raleigh on October 8, 2020. Registration is not yet open, but donations can be made year-round. 

About the Jim Bernstein Fellows Program
Jim Bernstein, the Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation’s founder and first president, dedicated his life and work to improving healthcare in rural communities across North Carolina. An innovator and a motivator, he served as a role model to others in how to address some of the most difficult rural health care challenges. Throughout his career, Jim accomplished a great deal, but he knew that new challenges in rural health would continue to emerge as time went on. Knowing this, Jim made a point of preparing the next generation of rural health leaders to meet these challenges. The Jim Bernstein Community Health Leadership Fellows Program was founded in 2006 to honor Jim’s legacy of developing future leaders.

About the Jim and Sue Bernstein Health Center Scholarship Program
Awarded annually, these scholarships help to relieve some of the financial burden on 20 eligible centers and their employees by helping to pay for both the clinical education of rural clinic staff members and the college education of their dependent in any area of interest. Since its inception in 2006, more than $75,000 has been awarded to more than 50 scholars representing nine health centers.


Event pictures available at https://foundationhli.org/2019-bernstein-dinner/

For more information, contact:
Marni Schribman, Director of Communications & Public Relations, Foundation for Health Leadership & Innovation