For Immediate Release

April 18, 2024


John Lyon
Strategic Communications Manager


Annual Award Recognizes Outstanding Impacts on Health of Arkansans

LITTLE ROCK ― The Arkansas Center for Health Improvement is accepting nominations for the 2024 Dr. Tom Bruce Arkansas Health Impact Award.

The annual award honors an individual or individuals who embody Dr. Tom Bruce’s lifetime of service by demonstrating courageous leadership and having sustained records as catalysts for improving the health of all Arkansans, and who exemplify the core values of ACHI: trust, commitment, innovation, and initiative.

To submit a nomination, visit The deadline for submissions is May 3. All nominations will be reviewed by the ACHI Health Policy Board, which will select the recipient or recipients to be honored later this year.

Previous recipients of the award include Dr. Joseph H. Bates, Dr. Joycelyn Elders, Ben E. Owens Sr., Dr. Kent Westbrook, Amy L. Rossi, Kathy Grisham, Dr. James Zini, Dr. David L. Williams, Dr. Betty Lowe and Jon Swanson. Video profiles of past recipients and Bruce are available at

Bruce was dean of the College of Medicine at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences for a decade and a pioneer in the field of community health. He is remembered for improving and expanding the College of Medicine and addressing a shortage of physicians in the state’s rural areas through the formation of Area Health Education Centers, which bring physician trainees to less-populated areas of Arkansas. He and his wife, Dolores, also helped establish ACHI with a $100,000 seed donation.

ACHI is a nonpartisan, independent health policy center that serves as a catalyst for improving the health of all Arkansans through evidence-based research, public issue advocacy, and collaborative program development. The ACHI Health Policy Board, consisting of 21 voting members and two ex-officio members, is an independent, self-perpetuating board that guides ACHI’s involvement in and positions on specific policy matters.