SUNY Potsdam Honors St. Lawrence Health President David Acker with Leadership Through Service Award
David Acker, President of St. Lawrence Health, Honored with 2022 Leadership Through Service Award
Potsdam, NY (06/02/2022) — SUNY Potsdam presented David B. Acker, President of St. Lawrence Health, with the 2022 Leadership Through Service Award in a surprise presentation at Canton-Potsdam Hospital.
The Leadership Through Service Award is one of the College's highest honors. The award was established to honor those outstanding individuals and organizations that have demonstrated a commitment of service to the Potsdam community. Each year, recipients are identified and acknowledged for their unwavering support toward the betterment of the North Country through their dedicated service.
"SUNY Potsdam is grateful to St. Lawrence Health and Canton-Potsdam Hospital for the outstanding care that they help provide for our students, our employees and our region. It's a privilege to be here to present the Leadership Through Service Award to David Acker, in recognition of his substantial contributions to the North Country," said Officer-in-Charge Dr. Philip T. Neisser '79.
Campus officials joined senior leaders from St. Lawrence Health for the award presentation at Acker's final board meeting at the helm before his retirement, after 15 years serving the community.
"David, your vision and leadership has moved our local healthcare system forward, ensuring that when we enter these facilities, that we are not only comfortable because we are able to receive care in our own community, but that we are confident we are receiving the very best care. For all of this and more, we are grateful. And so, in honor of your retirement and in recognition of all that you have provided to our region, SUNY Potsdam is proud to honor you today with the 2022 Leadership Through Service Award," said College Council Chair June O'Neill (Hon. '99).
"Thank you so much for this very, very thoughtful gift. As you know, this is really about the board members who are always focused on improvement, willing to take calculated risk, while making sure we stay on course. This is about the management team who does so much superb work that is unrecognized. This is about the medical staff who constantly lead the way. This is about the larger two thousand employees who are St. Lawrence Health, and most of all, it's about the community and all of the support that you continuously provide. It's really been an amazing 15 years," Acker said.
Since joining Canton-Potsdam Hospital as president and CEO in 2007, David B. Acker has overseen a major expansion and integration of services. Under his leadership, CPH developed a new comprehensive strategic plan, prioritized physician and provider recruitment, and expanded medical services across the county. In 2013, Gouverneur Hospital formally opened under the newly established St. Lawrence Health, followed in 2019 by the attrition of Massena Hospital. Acker oversaw the construction and dedication of numerous new and renovated facilities, including CPH's Center for Cancer Care, an expansion of the E.J. Noble Building in Canton, the new Helen Snell Cheel Medical Campus in Potsdam, the St. Lawrence Health Medical Campus in Canton, the Leroy Outpatient Center in Potsdam, and a state-of-the-art renovation of the CPH Critical Care Unit. In 2018, the CPH Emergency Department received Level III Adult Trauma designation. In 2021, St. Lawrence Health officially affiliated with Rochester Regional Health, affording our communities with additional access to advanced specialty services and a world-renowned integrated electronic medical record system. A proposed expansion of CPH to provide a single occupancy bed tower, an expanded emergency department and other major improvements are planned, benefiting Potsdam and the wider region.
About St. Lawrence Health:
St. Lawrence Health (SLH) was established in December 2013 with the mission to improve health and to expand access through coordination and integration of services. SLH is comprised of Canton-Potsdam, Gouverneur and Massena hospitals, and a number of outreach primary and specialty care practices throughout St. Lawrence County. Each practice is affiliated with one of the hospitals. SLH became an affiliate of Rochester Regional Health in January 2021. For more information, visit www.stlawrencehealthsystem.org.
About SUNY Potsdam:
Founded in 1816, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America's first 50 colleges -- and the oldest institution within SUNY. Now in its third century, SUNY Potsdam is distinguished by a legacy of pioneering programs and educational excellence. The College currently enrolls approximately 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its challenging liberal arts and sciences core, distinction in teacher training and culture of creativity. To learn more, visit www.potsdam.edu.