Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare CEO honored with Baldrige Foundation’s Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award

Photo of Michael Ugwueke holding the Harry Hertz Leadership Award

Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare CEO honored with Baldrige Foundation’s Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare President and CEO Dr. Michael Ugwueke is the recipient of the Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award from the Baldrige Foundation, the organization announced this week.

The Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award recognizes role-model leaders from across the U.S. who challenge, encourage and empower others to achieve performance excellence. Leaders from all business sectors are considered. The Baldrige Foundation supports organizational performance excellence in the United States and throughout the world.

“Michael is a role-model leader who has consistently over the years applied the principles of the Baldrige Framework to his leadership approach,” said Al Faber, President and CEO of the Foundation for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, Inc. “He has served the Baldrige Community as a Baldrige Examiner and ambassador for the Baldrige Framework.”

The Baldrige Foundation, in collaboration with The Synergy Organization, the Award’s Founding Sponsor, created the Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award in 2013.  This prestigious annual award was created in honor of Harry S. Hertz, PhD, the first recipient.  Dr. Hertz personified the Baldrige Core Values and Leadership Behaviors: visionary leadership, customer-focused excellence, valuing people, organizational learning, and agility, managing for innovation, management by fact, societal responsibility, ethics, and transparency, delivering value and results, and a systems perspective.

Dr. Harry Hertz is not a household name, but in C-Suites throughout the country, and at the executive level of manufacturers, school systems and healthcare systems, his name is legendary.  Until retiring in June of 2013, Dr. Hertz was the Director of the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program and is the person largely credited for keeping the Criteria for Performance Excellence relevant in a rapidly changing world.

Including the award’s namesake, Dr. Ugwueke is only the ninth individual to receive this prestigious annual award.  “On behalf of the Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare board of directors and our 13,000 employees, I am truly honored to receive this recognition. Dr. Hertz is a giant in the field of performance excellence and it is humbling to receive an award that bears his name,” said Ugwueke. “At Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare, we consider performance excellence to be a top priority as we strive to consistently provide safe, high quality care to those we are privileged to serve.”

The Baldrige Foundation considers nominees from across the nation for this prestigious award. The nominees’ leadership and achievements are carefully considered, including how they lead their organizations and inspire their teams to achieve high performance, and their accomplishments as promoters for excellence throughout the Baldrige community.

Traditionally, the Baldrige Foundation’s Leadership Awards are presented during the Foundation Awards Program held as part of the annual Quest for Excellence conference. Because the conference was postponed last year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the 2021 conference being virtual, the foundation will be conducting a virtual awards presentation event on April 14, 2021.

About The Foundation for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award

The Baldrige Foundation is the private-sector partner of the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program (BPEP) in the National Institute of Standards and Technology within the US Department of Commerce.  Its mission is to ensure the long-term financial viability of BPEP and to support organizational performance excellence.

 About Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare

Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare (MLH) has been caring for patients and families regardless of ability to pay for more than 100 years.  Guided by roots in the United Methodist Church and founded in 1918 to help meet the growing need for quality healthcare in the greater Memphis area, MLH has grown from one hospital into a comprehensive healthcare system with 13,000 Associates supporting six hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, outpatient facilities, hospice residence and physician practices serving communities across the Mid-South.  From transplants and advanced heart procedures to expert neurology services and compassionate cancer care, MLH offers clinical expertise with a focus on improving every life we touch.

About The Synergy Organization

Recognized as the first Evidence-Based Executive Search®, Executive Assessment and Consulting firm on the Baldrige Journey, The Synergy Organization is proud to serve as the Creator and Founding Sponsor of the Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award (in close collaboration with the Baldrige Foundation).  This prestigious award seeks to ensure the long-term success of the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program by identifying World-Class leaders who personify the Baldrige Core Values and Leadership Behaviors.  The award also represents The Synergy Organization’s longstanding commitment to “giving back” to this country.

The Synergy Organization has been described by its client partners as the “eHarmony of healthcare executive search and assessment firms” because of its blended application of validated psychological testing, formal research studies of Leadership Best Practices Research, and proprietary Synergy Screening System®.  These strengths enable the firm to apply proven science and most accurately recruit and select world class leaders who are systematically matched to their client partners’ unique needs.  The firm is proud to be celebrating 32 years of providing service with its loyal client partners around the country.

Please click here to learn more about other recipients of this prestigious award: