Last month Rich Umbdenstock, former President and Chief Executive Officer of the American Hospital Association (AHA) joined the Communities of Excellence 2026 Board. Mr. Umbdenstock’s career includes experience in hospital administration; health system governance, management and integration; association governance and management; HMO governance; and health care governance consulting. He has written books and articles for the health care board audience and has authored national survey reports for AHA, HRET and ACHE. The AHA leads, represents and serves more than 5,000 member hospitals, health systems and other health care organizations, and 43,000 individual members.
COE 2026 Board Chair Lowell Kruse writes, “During his long and distinguished career in healthcare administration and most recently in his role as President of the AHA, Rich has had a very strong focus on the importance of continuous quality improvement in healthcare and the vital nature of community engagement. Adding his unique perspective to our Communities of Excellence 2026 initiative will be extremely beneficial to our organization and the communities we serve. We welcome Rich as the newest member of our Board of Directors.”
Rick Norling, COE 2026 Vice-Chair and Co-Founder said, “Rich has been a major healthcare leader and supporter of the Baldrige criteria.”
Mr. Umbdenstock has been very supportive of COE 2026’s efforts in the past and we are very pleased that he is now a part of our Board.