Congratulations to 2024 McWherter Leadership Award Recipient Tami Anderson

The Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence (TNCPE) is proud to announce that Tami Anderson, former Vice President of Quality and Patient Safety at University of Tennessee Medical Center (UTMC), is the recipient of the 2024 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.

“Tami Anderson is a selfless, tireless advocate for patient safety and improving the quality of care for Tennesseans,” says Kimberly Mason, UTMC Vice President of Pharmacy and Research. “As VP for Quality & Patient Safety, Tami guided UTMC in developing and improving our Culture of Safety through the implementation of Just Culture and TeamSTEPPS. She showed tremendous commitment to the Baldrige framework for our organization, striving to improve workforce capacity and capability while aligning and integrating processes to improve patient safety and experience.  Additionally, Tami became an ambassador for Baldrige principles through her service on the TNCPE Board of Directors.”

Anderson actively engaged in best practice sharing, representing UTMC for many years on the Tennessee Hospital Association’s Patient Safety Advisory Council, as well as serving as liaison with the UTK College of Business, providing site visits for graduate students around the country to observe how UTMC implemented Lean principals to improve patient flow and team member satisfaction. Tami also served as the Planning Section Chief in the hospital’s incident command structure through the first two years of the pandemic, leading the development of the medical center’s vaccine clinic, thereby providing this important service to thousands of employees and community members.

Heather Schoch, President and CEO of TNCPE agrees that “Tami’s passion for quality has improved the patient experience not just at UTMC but throughout the region. Her leadership was a contributing factor in the Medical Center’s ability to win TNCPE’s prestigious Excellence Award. Tami’s work on TNCPE’s Board of Directors has been influential in driving many other organizations toward improvement.”

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), Rebecca Hunter (Commissioner, TN Department of Human Resources), Doran Johnson (NHC South Central Region), and Patrick Lawton (City Administrator, City of Germantown, TN).

Anderson will accept the award at the 2024 Excellence in Tennessee Awards Celebration on Thursday, February 29th at the Franklin Cool Springs Hilton in Franklin, TN.