Did you know that your TN HIMSS Board or Directors is comprised of 35 diverse members from across the state? In fact, your TN HIMSS board is one of the largest and most engaged boards out of all HIMSS chapters—and one of the most decorated. The chapter was named Large Chapter of the Year last year, and Past President Tommy Lewis was named Chapter Leader of the Year as well. And that’s just the most recent accolades.

Awards aside, TN HIMSS works to improve healthcare – and health – by providing leadership for professional growth, workforce development and advocacy related to health information technology. The chapter aligns expertise and resources to grow our region’s HIT talent pool and knowledge base. Chapter members include HIT professionals, clinicians, researchers and business leaders.

Passion about improving healthcare and health-related endeavors is what drives our board in serving the chapter’s 2,000 members. And it’s not just the board, but there are many other members involved through 10 committees where the “real work” is accomplished in a “roll-up-your-sleeve approach”.

Being a TN HIMSS Board of Director is more than just a notable position. Many of our board members lead committees, sometimes spending many hours per week managing and working within these committees and conducting other board-level responsibilities. TN HIMSS Board of Directors are truly part of a “working board” with many accepting this responsibility as a second job and equally committed to serving TN HIMSS members with meaningful experiences and educational opportunities.

To ensure TN HIMSS has a high-performing board and one that is engaged, the Collaboration Committee was tasked with establishing a process for measuring and setting expectations for board-level engagement. This started three years ago, and the process includes one-on-one interviews with each board member to determine:

  • why they are on the board and what attracted them to this leadership position of the chapter
  • what kind of activity with committees, projects and programs they have had with since joining the board
  • how they want to participate in the future
  • and even asking the question of board members where the TN HIMSS Board is still a good fit

Out of this process grew an even more defined process which includes:

  • setting board member goals and expectations
  • establishing board member qualifications
  • identifying ways that the chapter can better support board members 
  • conducting annual board member year-end-reviews
  • determining continued participation
  • assisting with members transitioning off the board

TN HIMSS leaders embraced this new process as it hones the engagement level of each member and establishes a baseline expectation and results-oriented approach that is measurable annually. An active and engaged board fosters creativity, ideas and meaningful activity.

For instance, one of the more noteworthy activities of the board over the last few years is the HIT Workforce Accelerator that has concluded 10 “classes” – or cohorts – and graduated over 100 students. This workforce development effort started out of an identified need to grow the HIT talent pool across Tennessee to fill the burgeoning shortage of skilled, knowledgeable Health IT workers. Many of the participants of the HIT workforce accelerator have seen their careers skyrocket and been able to provide more value to their employers because of the deep healthcare knowledge they gained from the rich curriculum.

Another impactful example from TN HIMSS board leadership is the chapter’s Ambassador Program. Ambassadors are emerging leaders in healthcare who have a passion for healthcare IT, advocacy, workforce development, personal growth and continuous education and learning. This important group supports the chapter’s strategic initiatives — healthcare IT advocacy, workforce development and education – in many ways. They offer new perspectives to programs, provide resources for committees and expertise to a number of activities.

There are many more examples of how an engaged board and committee structure is creating value for the chapter’s members — from world-class programs to networking opportunities and educational activities and more.

Because so much is accomplished by volunteers is a testament to the commitment by our chapter’s leadership team and committee heads. With over 2,000 members statewide, there is ample opportunity for all members to participate on a committee, which could lead to a board position. Start today – get involved!