Announcing the 2022 McWherter Leadership Award

Doran Johnson, retired Senior Vice President of NHC South Central Region, to be honored at the 29th Annual Excellence in Tennessee Awards Celebration

The Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence (TNCPE) is proud to announce that Doran Johnson, recently retired from NHC South Central Region as Senior Vice President, is the recipient of the 2022 Ned R. McWherter Leadership Award.

The Ned R. McWherter Leadership Award annually recognizes an individual who exemplifies outstanding leadership in the pursuit of performance excellence and has worked to further performance improvement beyond the boundaries of his or her organization. Over his 49-year career at National HealthCare Corporation (NHC), Doran remained committed to TNCPE’s core values of customer focus, leadership, and continuous improvement, as evidenced by the exemplary results he and his team produced.

“Doran Johnson has been an incredible leader with NHC for almost 50 years,” says Steve Flatt, CEO of NHC. “Doran has always believed in continuous quality improvement, and he was an early proponent of, and participant in TNCPE. He is deeply committed to the core values of TNCPE and the Baldrige Excellence Framework, and he is a most deserving recipient of the Ned R. McWherter Leadership Award.”

Heather Schoch, President and CEO of TNCPE says “Doran has a passion for customer service and performance improvement. He is a true servant leader and exudes a commitment to excellence that is contagious to those who work with him. Under his direction, NHC South Central Region won TNCPE’s prestigious Excellence Award in 2020.”

Johnson further served the community as member of the Board of Southern Tennessee Regional Health System, Pulaski and the Board of Martin Methodist College from 1999 until the successful merger that created the University of Tennessee Southern in 2021. He was an influential leader on TNCPE’s Board of Directors.

Johnson will accept the award at the 2022 Excellence in Tennessee Awards Celebration on Wednesday, March 23 at the Franklin Marriott Cool Springs in Franklin, TN.

The McWherter Award is named after the 46th governor of Tennessee, who was instrumental in TNCPE’s founding in 1993. Ned McWherter’s support for the program acknowledged the value of the Baldrige Excellence Framework as an integral tool that can help Tennessee businesses and organizations thrive. Previous honorees include Dr. Bob Bell (President, Tennessee Tech University), Dr. Andy Czuchry (AFG Chair of Excellence, ETSU), Jan McNally (Director, Leadership Development Covenant Health), Robert Otwell (CEO, Maury Regional Medical Center), Ed Scott (Treasurer, Caterpillar, Inc.), Dr. Susan Williams (Professor of Management, Belmont University), Dr. R. Michael Browder (CEO, Bristol Tennessee Essential Services), David McClaskey (President, Pal’s Business Excellence Institute), Dennis Vonderfecht (CEO, Mountain States Health Alliance), Dr. Joe Alexander (Associate Dean, Jack C. Massey Graduate School of Business at Belmont University), Lewis Lavine (President, Center for Nonprofit Management), Thom Crosby (President and CEO, Pal’s), Jim Duensing (Executive Vice President/CFO, Caterpillar Financial Services), Donn Fisher (Executive Director/CEO, MSQPC – the Quality Center), Chuck Shoopman (Assistant Vice President, UT Institute for Public Service), Dr. John Dreyzehner (Commissioner, TN Department of Health), David M. Jones (President, The Excellence Advisory), and Rebecca Hunter (Commissioner, TN Department of Human Resources).