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“I have contacted the Department of Veterans Affairs Undersecretary of Health to inform him of your wife’s problems with health providers in Puerto Rico.

“We hope this information is beneficial to secure the needed care for your wife.”

Shaft notes

Congratulations to Fernando O. Rivera for the receipt of two prestigious honors that were recently presented to him at the American College of Health Care Executives’ (ACHE) annual meeting.

The first was the Federal Excellence in Healthcare Leadership Award (FEHLA), secured for his dynamic and innovative management skills in the federal health-care arena. For his engaging mentoring skills with residents and fellows participating in the VHA Graduate Healthcare Administration Training Program (GHATP), Mr. Rivera garnered the Veterans Health Administration’s Preceptor of the Year Award.

Mr. Rivera leads a health-care delivery system of four medical centers and a team of more than 7,000 professionals in the mid-Atlantic region for the Department of Veterans Affairs. The highly coveted FEHLA award recognizes just one of the 1,800 federally employed ACHE members who makes significant and impactful contributions above and beyond the daily norm to the college, and who demonstrate a deep commitment to tutoring, lifelong learning and professional development. USAF Brig. Gen. (retired) Donald B. Wagner commissioned the award to honor federal employees.

“I’m deeply grateful to Brig. Gen. Wagner and the college for recognizing me. Personally, I have benefited from ACHE, and in turn, this motivates
me to develop future health-care leaders,” Mr. Rivera says. “Many people throughout my career invested in me, and in turn, I want to pay it forward to help future leaders navigate their professional development with VA.”

The prestigious Preceptor of the Year Award is well deserved. Mr. Rivera has increased the number of certified mentors throughout his area from 53 to 114.

Send letters to Sgt. Shaft, c/o John Fales, P.O. Box 65900, Washington, D.C. 20035-5900; fax 301/622-3330, call 202/257-5446 or email