PROFESSIONAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARD:  An award to recognize individuals who advance the HIM profession.

The Professional Achievement Award honors a MaHIMA member for numerous and long-term contributions to the HIM profession.

Congratulations to this year's recipient:  Maria Palumbo, RHIA, Chief Compliance & Privacy Officer, Lawrence General Hospital

Past Award Winners of the Professional Achievement Award

  • 1992 Annalee Collins, MEd, RHIA and Dorothy Wagg, JD, RHIA
  • 1993 Robert Seger, RHIA, CCS
  • 1994 Richard Logan, RHIA
  • 1995 Linda Hyde, RHIA
  • 1996 Cathie Wilde, RHIA
  • 1997 Mary Kay Coyle, RHIA
  • 1998 Clare E. Carvel, RHIA
  • 1999 Patricia B. Murphy, RHIA
  • 2000 Holly A.M. Ballam, RHIA
  • 2001 Barry Libman, RHIA, CCS, CCS-P
  • 2002 Deborah A. Adair, MPH, MS, RHIA
  • 2003 Luisa DiIeso, RHIA, CCS
  • 2004 Nancy Stanton, RHIA
  • 2005 Gerry Abrahamian, RHIT
  • 2007 Deborah A. Adair, MPH, MS, RHIA & Karen Griffin
  • 2008 Joan Usher, RHIA
  • 2009 Christopher Richards, RHIA
  • 2010 Nancy Entwistle, MPA, RHIT, CCS, ACE
  • 2011 Mark Haas
  • 2012 Not awarded
  • 2013 Margaret Donais, RHIT
  • 2014 Joy Rose, RHIA, CCS
  • 2015  Karen Gallagher Grant, RHIA, CHP
  • 2016 Elise Belanger, RHIA & Lisa Fernandes Mello, RHIT, CCS
  • 2017 Scott Eischen, RHIA, CCS
  • 2018 Cheryl Rau, RHIT and Danielle Roy, RHIT,CCS,CPC
  • 2019 Ellen Butler Vaitkunas, RHIA
  • 2020 Not Awarded
  • 2021 Denise Bourgeois, CCS, RHIT
  • 2024 Maria Palumbo, RHIA


  • Positioning the HIM profession as a leadership force in the healthcare industry
  • Advancing professional practice through development of new theory;  active dissemination of knowledge about cutting-edge practice innovations; or leadership in a specialty
  • Significant original research or authorship, editing, or service on editorial board for journals, books, monographs, and other publications related to HIM
  • Regular presenter at HIM conferences and other educational events
  • Respected instructor in academic HIM programs or developer of groundbreaking teaching strategies
  • Promotion of quality information through quality data
  • Introduction of creative practice innovations through advances in technology, development of more effective quality management measures, or new methods of promoting employee motivation and job satisfaction
  • Employing HIM practice in alternate careers not limited to the healthcare industry

Eligible Candidates

  • MaHIMA member


  • Describe in detail the role and involvement of the individual. Please include an outline of the specific examples, challenges and outcomes.
  • Recognition:  The Professional Achievement Award will be presented at the MaHIMA Annual Conference and the winner showcased in MaHIMA Connect. Winner receives complimentary attendance to the reception and a certificate of achievement.