Now considered vital parts of the facilities management, infection control and clinical care teams, environmental services professionals have come a long way, as evidenced by the impressive number of important service awards now available to them.

As the leading organization in the field, the Association for the Healthcare Environment (AHE) has played a key role in making this recognition possible. To help maintain this high professional profile, environmental services leaders or their colleagues should seriously consider taking part in these AHE competitions:

Phoenix Award. Started in 1987, this is the highest honor bestowed upon an AHE member. The Phoenix Award recognizes a nominee who has made an unselfish, lasting impact as well as outstanding contributions to the growth and professionalism of AHE, the membership and to environmental services. It is open to AHE members only.

Heart of Healthcare Award. Developed by AHE and Kimberly- Clark Professional, this award honors outstanding front-line environmental services technicians who have made a contribution to safety initiatives and preventing health care-associated infections.

AHE Innovation Award. This award has been developed and designed to recognize and increase awareness of products, processes and technology advancements that empower individuals to improve measured outcomes in caring for the health care environment.

Environmental Services Department of the Year Award. This award recognizes and celebrates best practices in cleaning and caring for the environment. It was designed to highlight the outstanding achievements of a leading-edge environmental services team. Health Facilities Management is the media sponsor for this award.

J. Owen Flynn Memorial Award. This is presented annually to an individual who, without personal gain, performed service to the benefit of his or her hospital, community, state or country.

James Wolfbrandt Award. This award is presented to an individual who best exemplifies consistent commitment to mentorship.

The deadline for all awards is June 26, so don’t delay. Go to to help maintain the high profile of the environmental services profession.