2023 Annual Luncheon

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The 2023 Annual Luncheon held on September 8th at the Marriott Albany was a resounding success, bringing together attendees from healthcare, education, legislative, and workforce development backgrounds. 

This was a day of inspiration, networking, and celebration. 

Event Summary

Our CEO, Richard Merchant, commenced the event by highlighting the value and importance of our community-driven workforce development efforts, emphasizing AHEC and HWNY’s clear alignment with SUNY’s Four Pillars. The event featured a number of exceptional speakers, including a Keynote Address from SUNY Chancellor John B. King Jr., who shared his vision and commitment to advancing healthcare workforce development across NYS, including a new Healthcare Workforce Development Task Force lead by SUNY Vice Chancellor, Valery Grey. Leishia Smallwood, Director of the NYS AHEC System also spoke, delivering an exceptional speech regarding the vital impact of AHEC programming. Ms. Smallwood focused on the importance and value of collaborative partnerships, highlighting the incredible achievements of BQLI-AHEC, NAHEC, and CNYAHEC working together with HWNY. Chancellor King and Ms. Smallwood’s powerful messages left attendees inspired and motivated. The Luncheon provided time and a comfortable environment for initiating meaningful connections and collaborations, allowing attendees the opportunity to network with fellow professionals . The event provided a venue for presenting three individuals with prestigious Annual Scholarship awards. 

Scholarship Awards

The annual competitive scholarships are awarded to students who have completed at least one AHEC program, and who will be entering a medical or health professions program. This years three recipients delivered powerful acceptance speeches that spoke of the value of the AHEC programs, and support of the Boards of Directors.

L.Thomas Wolff, M.D.

Brianna Torres

Physician Assistant student in the Ithaca College PA Program

The Hazel Sanderson, Ed.D., R.N. Health Career Scholarship

Malaika Dewes

Master’s in Public Health student with a specialization in Health Policy and Management at the SUNY Downstate School of Public Health

Bruce C. Potter Memorial Scholarship

Rachel Roth

Occupational Therapy Student at Clarkson University

Learn more about our scholarships and awardees in the Event Program >

Photo Gallary

View some snapshots to get a glimpse of the memorable moments, engaging conversations, and smiles from the Annual Luncheon.

A special Thank You from our team and Boards of Directors to everyone who attended and helped make the day a huge success.

We look forward to seeing you all next year!

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