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AHEC’s advisory board chairman wins national award

October 03, 2022

The Northeast Kentucky Area Health Education Center (AHEC)’s longtime advisory board chairman recently received the National AHEC Organization’s inaugural Board Member Distinguished Service Award.

Bill Shely, who has served as advisory board chairman for the past 25 years, was selected from advisory board and board of director members for more than 300 regional AHECs and AHEC program offices across the nation.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working with the Northeast Kentucky AHEC and supporting its efforts to facilitate the education of current and future health care professionals,” said Shely, who has worked as a registered pharmacist in Morehead for more than 40 years. “It’s quite an honor to be selected for this award and I’m sincerely appreciative of the recognition.”

Primary considerations for the Board Member Distinguished Service Award included “leadership and significant contribution of time, resources, ideas, general guidance … and evidence that the nominee’s contributions have led to specific positive outcomes for the AHEC.”

The Northeast Kentucky AHEC has a mission of enhancing access to quality health care within its 17-county service region. The AHEC’s advisory board includes health care professionals, administrators, educators, and health professions students from across northeastern Kentucky.

In addition to rarely missing one of the Northeast Kentucky AHEC’s quarterly advisory board meetings, Shely has been a longstanding member of the AHEC’s Continuing Pharmacy Education Advisory Committee, helping to develop the annual “Pharmacy Law Update” (held in Ashland, Maysville, and Morehead) and “Fall Pharmacy Forum” events. He also served for many years as a community preceptor for students on rotation from the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy, and recently placed a Medisafe drug take-back unit at the Cave Run Pharmacy in Morehead as part of the AHEC’s opioid response program grant.

“From serving for a quarter century as our advisory board chair to being actively involved in educational, clinical training, and community health initiatives, Bill Shely has had a profound impact on our AHEC and this region,” said Northeast Kentucky AHEC Director David A. Gross. “We’re thrilled the National AHEC Organization selected Bill for this award – he richly deserves it!”

The award will be formally presented to Shely during the AHEC’s Preceptor Recognition Celebration on Nov. 11.