Employer of Excellence logo

Employer of Excellence Award Winners

AAPA is proud to highlight the programs our winners have created to involve and empower PAs in the administration of patient care and the facilitation of effective collaboration among all providers.

Click on the button below to view the video of the award winners.

Award Winners

Apollo MD logo


At ApolloMD, PAs are a part of the Advanced Practice Clinicians (APC) team. APCs fill several leadership positions, including the Chief of Clinical Operations. The APC program is structured into five tiers, ensuring that providers are engaged and have opportunities for advancement. Each practice has a Lead APC, who ensures that all providers have a voice in decisions that impact practice culture and workflow. Additionally, senior-level APCs who are interested in advancing beyond their clinical roles have an opportunity to complete leadership training.

Atrium Health logo

Atrium Health

Atrium Health created its Center for Advanced Practice (CAP) in 2013, to better engage their PAs and NPs. CAP serves as the communication vehicle to all PAs in the system, through email, an internal social media platform, town hall meetings, and more. In 2015, an Advanced Practice Provider (APP) Committee was created to work with CAP, to formulate strategic and operational decisions related to the advanced practice workforce. CAP and the APP Committee have worked to ensure optimization of PAs in practice and to develop an advanced practice strategy.

Brigham and Women's Hospital logo

Brigham Health – Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Brigham and Women’s Hospital’s PA Services department is embedded within its leadership infrastructure which enables PA contributions in clinical practice, research, and education. Its director of PA services was selected to participate in an executive leadership program allowing for direct input and representation on initiatives to increase patient access, enhance patient throughput, and design new clinical processes. A series of courses helps PAs engage in conversation and practice related to conflict management, providing critical feedback, and managing difficult conversations. Brigham and Women’s Hospital was also selected as a 2018-2019 Employer of Excellence.

Cleveland Clinic logo

Cleveland Clinic

The Cleveland Clinic has an executive director of PA services, strong recruitment tactics, and leadership opportunities for its PAs. Each new hire gets assigned into a Transition to Practice onboarding program. This allows new hires to have a full year of onboarding in order to assess their evolving skills and competency levels and has led to increased retention of each new hire. In addition, the director of APRN/PA sits at the C-suite level at regional hospitals. Cleveland Clinic was also selected as a 2018-2019 Employer of Excellence.

Dana Farber Cancer Institute logo

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

At Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, PAs complete a three-month orientation, which is customized to each PA and job. All PAs report to Chief PAs, who support hiring, orientation, policy, and improvement initiatives, and work with PA medical directors. There is a promotion structure for PAs, and PAs are encouraged to be involved on committees and take on leadership opportunities. Additionally, a pre-PA student program coordinates shadowing for those interested in pursuing a PA career.

Intermountain Healthcare logo

Intermountain Healthcare

Intermountain Healthcare offers advancement opportunities for PAs to become local leads of departments and units, as well as APP Directors of Specialties. PAs report to the APP Directors, many of whom are PAs. The APP Directors report directly to the Senior Medical Directors, while also matrixed with nursing and operations leaders as part of their specialty-specific leadership teams, and help to set strategy for their areas.

Medical College of Wisconsin logo

Medical College of Wisconsin

The Medical College of Wisconsin has several leadership training opportunities for PAs, including a formal onboarding “transition to practice” program. The MCW Leadership Academy – for which participants are nominated by local leaders and selected by executive leadership – has graduated several PAs in the last five years. PAs also have an opportunity to participate in a Leadership Development Series, which includes half-day educational sessions.

Northwell Health logo

Northwell Health

PAs hold many leadership roles at Northwell Health – including Chief Human Resource Officer, Regional Executive Director, VP of Community and Population Health, Corporate Assistant VP of ACPs, and numerous other Senior Administrative Directors. Additionally, the contributions of individual PAs are recognized through an annual incentivized compensation bonus, designed to reward and show the value of the work PAs provide.

Northwestern Medicine logo

Northwestern Medicine, Central Region

Northwestern Medicine pairs each new PA with a member of the APRN/PA committee, to serve as a mentor throughout their first year. Depending on the needs of the new PA, this mentorship can include emails or face-to-face meetings. New APPs are also invited to a monthly meeting to discuss challenges and successes they’re experiencing and learn about available resources. After their first year, PAs have an opportunity to participate in several APRN/PA subcommittees.

NYU Langone Health logo

NYU Langone Health

NYU Langone Health pairs new PAs with resident staff, senior PAs, or an attending physician, and comprehensive assessments take place during mentoring. The development of their Health Leadership Councils puts them at the forefront of progressive employers. These Councils encompass PAs across the system who meet bi-monthly to address quality, safety, and patient experience metrics which inform new initiatives in patient care. They hold an annual think tank for innovative ideas that PAs participate in for patient safety. NYU Langone Health was also selected as a 2018-2019 Employer of Excellence.

Penn State Health

The Penn State Health Office of Advanced Practice (OAP) represents all APPs, including PAs. The OAP has developed and built a leadership structure to provide APPs with a leadership pathway, increasing the number of APP leaders from four to 26 over the last four years. Additionally, APPs are included in the med-exec with representation voting rights, and all 500+ APPs have the ability to vote with their physician colleagues.

University of Iowa Health Care logo

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics

The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics hold an Executive Leadership Academy, for which PAs can apply with departmental support. This comprehensive program addresses characteristics and skills needed to be an effective leader in an academic healthcare setting. Additionally, any PA can attend the APP Leadership Symposium, which was created and planned by APP leaders to help APPs develop their leadership skills.

University of Rochester Medical Center logo

University of Rochester Medical Center

The University of Rochester Medical Center has an integrated APP administrative structure, which includes PAs in leadership positions. URMC has eight postgraduate fellowship programs for PAs and NPs. URMC’s PA Executive Committee (PAEC) is an advisory group to the CMO and medical staff on matters related to PA practice, and has credentialing responsibilities for every PA within the system. The PAEC created and employs a PA Clinical Advancement pathway to promote PAs to Senior PA.

UPMC Life Changing Medicine logo


The UPMC Office of Advanced Practice Providers (OAPP) handles support programing for the APP workforce, including PAs, and is led by a PA Chief Advanced Practice Officer, who is also a PA. The OAPP oversees an APP Jump Start Program to support onboarding and orientation of new APPs and hosts two continuing education conferences each year, and monthly virtual continuing education grand rounds for all 3,000 APPs. The OAPP also publishes a quarterly newsletter for managers of APPs, facilitates the development of APP Advisory Committees, and has launched 20 APP Postgraduate Fellowships that aid in the transition to high-level practice.

UT Southwestern Medical Center logo

UT Southwestern Medical Center

UT Southwestern Medical Center selects a PA of the Year annually during national PA Week. PAs interested in leadership roles can participate in a 12-month development program called the Aspiring Leaders Program, which includes one-on-one mentoring. Director, Assistant Director, Program Manager, and APP Lead roles are all leadership opportunities for PAs, which allow them to advocate for the APP workforce.

Wake Forest Baptist Health

Wake Forest Baptist Health

At Wake Forest Baptist Health, PAs are formally represented by a director of advanced practice-PAs who reports directly to the chief medical officer. This position provides administrative oversight and ensures that PAs have a voice at the leadership table. Formal APP bylaws include scope of practice rules and professional protection for PA rights. A PA has also been elected to the Wake Forest Baptist Health Network Board of Managers, which makes operational decisions and provides guidance to key leaders. Wake Forest Baptist Health was also selected as a 2018-2019 Employer of Excellence.