At last fall's Annual Conference & Healthcare Marketplace in Reno, Nev., ASHES conducted 10 focus groups from among the convention's attendees. Sixty participants represented membership at all stages and phases, from one to 30 years in the profession, eight months to 25 years in the society, and 32 to 61 years of age.

Additionally, ASHES conducted a detailed member opinion survey in December to gather feedback about our organization, benefits, products, services, value, reputation, market penetration, recognition and everything the ASHES brand represented to our members and other stakeholders.

The compelling feedback was such that the ASHES board of directors spent the past seven months analyzing and discussing the data with a professional branding and public relations firm. The data and information was cross-checked against member data from 2007 and 2008 as well as with external trend information and environmental scans. The board then directed executive staff to work closely with the firm to lay out a path for a major re-branding campaign.

All of what we collected, reviewed, analyzed and discussed told the board it was time for a major overhaul that would broaden our organizational focus and deliver a wider array of products and services to meet the expanding responsibilities of the profession.

There was an imperative to intensify efforts toward improving the visibility of the expertise of the profession. Overwhelmingly, we were told that the value of the ASHES brand rested on what and who we represent, the delivery of education, networking and the competitive edge we provided. We also heard how much members value being a part of the American Hospital Association.

As ASHES celebrates 25 years as the leading organization for health care environmental services, the board decided to launch the new brand at our next annual conference on Sept. 26-30 in the Washington, D.C., area.

Heartfelt thanks to every professional who took the time to provide the compelling feedback. We have heard your needs, demands, advice, praise and encouragement. As we move into the next 25 years, you can be sure this organization will remain relevant, committed to the membership and the profession, and grateful for the rich ASHES history handed down from previous leadership.

Fiona Nemetz, CHESP
Director of Environmental Services, Transport, Safety and Parking
Saint Joseph’s Hospital of Atlanta

Sidebar - ASHES insight

Annual conferencemoved to DC area

As reported last month, the ASHES Annual Conference & Healthcare Marketplace has been relocated to the Gaylord National Harbor in Maryland (Washington, D.C., metro area) due to the tragic flooding at the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tenn., where the event was originally scheduled.

For more information on the event, which will be held Sept. 26-30, go to ASHES' website at

ASHES offers online CHESP study group

ASHES is offering an online Certified Healthcare Environmental Services Professional (CHESP) Study Group, which will start on Nov. 8 and last six weeks. CHESP candidates or potential candidates will collaborate, interact, review material and help each other prepare for the exam. For more information, visit

Environmental services week products and gifts

Environmental services managers and their staffs can celebrate Environmental Services and Housekeeping Week on Sept. 12-18 with ASHES' exclusive collection of products and gifts. The items are available for purchase at