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Monday August 19, 2019
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February 2009 - Volume 5 - Issue 8

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SFHEF Presents Highlights of 2008, Priorities for 2009 at Annual Installation Dinner

The South Florida Healthcare Executive Forum, Inc. (SFHEF) held its annual installation dinner at the Miami Beach Resort & Spa on January 22 from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Close to 175 guests attended the event.

Noel Christian Pace, outgoing president, opened the program with a recap of the highlights of 2008. During the year, membership rose to nearly 500, thanks to the addition of 70 new members. The organization hosted 14 education and networking activities, which drew over 1,000 attendees, and modernized the website, making it more informative and more visual. SFHEF was also named one of the top ten chapters in the United States, garnering, for the second year in a row, a "Chapter of Distinction" award.

The evening included the presentation of ACHE awards, as well as SFHEF’s community service recognition. The Honorable Steven Leifman, Miami-Dade County judge, won the latter honor for his extraordinary efforts "to move the mentally ill away from incarceration and into appropriate care." Leifman is special advisor on criminal justice and mental health for the Supreme Court of Florida, and chair of the court’s mental health subcommittee.


Seated (l-r): Ruth Hernandez, Eleace Sawyers, Barbara Perez-Deppman, Coralia Jennings, Michelle Marsh, Nancy Borkowski
Standing (l-r): Sandra Vazquez, Marco Carrasco, Jeff Herschler, Michael J. Casanova, Noel Christian Pace, J. Larry Tyler, Charles Felix, Stuart Podolnick, Kevin Fine, Jeff Kramer, Paul Venette
Photo courtesy of Elite Photography.

Keynote speaker for the evening was J. Larry Tyler, founder of Tyler & Company, one of the largest executive search firms in the country, and one of the top ten companies serving the healthcare industry (Modern Healthcare magazine).

Tyler addressed the topic, "Leadership for Tomorrow." In defining leadership, Tyler quoted Peter Drucker: "Leadership is evidenced by the presence of willing followers." Tyler touched on eight styles of leadership, from "autocratic" and "cascading," to "narcissistic" and "situational. He then took a look at seven traits outstanding leaders share in common: they are results-oriented, adaptable, good communicators, fiscally astute, adept at top-line growth, quality driven, and honest and trustworthy. All told, the #1 criterion for leadership competency, Tyler concluded, is "excellent communication skills."

Following the installation of SFHEF’s new board of directors, Charles Felix, incoming president, commented on the year ahead. "2009 will bring great challenges to all of us," he said, "but it will also give us opportunities to make returns on our investment in membership."

The 2009 SFHEF, Inc. Board of Directors

President: Charles Felix, CPA
President-Elect: Nancy Borkowski, CPA, DBA, FACHE
Immediate Past President: Noel Christian Pace, FACHE
Treasurer: Eleace Sawyers
Treasurer Elect: Michael J. Casanova
Membership Chair: M. Alexandra Johnson, FACHE
Membership Chair-Elect: Maria Corzo, FACHE
Education Program Chair: Paul Venette
Education Program Chair-Elect: Sandra Vazquez
Networking Chair: Jeff Herschler
Networking Chair-Elect: Barbara Perez-Deppman, FACHE
Communications Chair: Jeff Kramer, CPA
Communications Chair-Elect: Coralia Jennings
Member at Large: Stuart Podolnick, FACHE
Member at Large: Michelle Marsh
Member at Large: Ruth Hernandez
Member at Large: Kevin Fine
Member at Large: Marco Carrasco
Ex-Officio Eastern Florida ACHE Regent: Kevin DiLallo, FACHE

Felix, who is often referred to as the "poster boy" for networking, asserted that maintaining relationships is essential for success, especially today. "When pennies are pinched," he noted, "we give financial capital to someone we know rather than a voice on the telephone."

Establishing an outplacement committee to help "members in employment distress" will be a priority in the coming year, said Felix. The committee will be charged with getting the word out about employees looking for jobs, and also let members know of positions that are available.

Other priorities will be to make educational events more meaningful—"members must be able to use what they’ve learned right away," said Felix—and more active student participation in the organization. He asked members to not only mentor students, but to learn from them as well.

Felix closed his remarks with the acknowledgement that "difficult times call for practical measures. Speaking to his new board, committees, and SFHEF members-at-large, he observed, "What we can expect in 2009 is a lot of hard work."

For more information about SFHEF, visit www.sfhef.com.
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