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America’s Essential Hospitals Honors Capitol Hill Staff

April 3, 2014

WASHINGTON—America’s Essential Hospitals this week presented awards to six House and Senate staff members for their outstanding work to improve health care for vulnerable patients.

“These awardees have shown a truly outstanding level of commitment and passion for enhancing care for our patients,” said America’s Essential Hospitals President and CEO Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH, in presenting the association’s inaugural Christine Capito Burch Award for congressional staff leadership.

“While being a congressional staff member is rewarding work, it too often goes unrecognized,” Siegel said. “That’s why we created this award: to acknowledge and celebrate the contributions of the many dedicated women and men behind the important work of creating our nation’s laws.”

The award is named in honor of the association’s first executive director, who served in that position for two decades after a successful career on Capitol Hill as a congressional staff member herself. Burch joined Siegel in presenting the awards during a Capitol Hill luncheon Wednesday.

“I worked on Capitol Hill a long time ago, but the demands on staff—the long hours and challenges of complex issues—haven’t changed,” Burch said. “These honorees have done an incredible job as experts on issues important to vulnerable patients and have helped make us a better, kinder country.”

The association presented the Christine Capito Burch Award to these staff members:

  • Sasha G. Albohm, legislative assistant to Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL)
  • Ahaviah Glaser, senior health counsel to Sen. John D. Rockefeller (D-WV)
  • Kate Leone, senior health counsel to Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV)
  • J.P. Paluskiewicz, deputy chief of staff to Rep. Michael Burgess, MD (R-TX)
  • Monica Popp, deputy chief of staff to Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX)
  • Kelly Whitener, professional staff, Senate Committee on Finance

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About America’s Essential Hospitals
America’s Essential Hospitals, formerly the National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems, is the leading association and champion for hospitals and health systems dedicated to high-quality care for all, including the most vulnerable. Since 1981, America’s Essential Hospitals has initiated, advanced, and preserved programs and policies that help these hospitals ensure access to care. It supports members with advocacy, policy development, research, and education.

Our more than 200 members are vital to their communities, providing primary care through trauma care, disaster response, health professionals training, research, public health programs, and other services. They innovate and adapt to lead the broader health care community toward more effective and efficient care. Visit to learn more.

Carl Graziano


About the Author

Graziano is senior director of communications for America's Essential Hospitals.

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