Leadership Excellence Networks

About LENS

LENS is a collaborative of US hospitals and health systems dedicated to strengthening leadership and organizational excellence through communities of practices focused on the advancement of diversity, equity, & inclusion; leadership development; well-being; and talent metrics, analytics, and planning. Senior leaders from LENS member organizations participate in a variety of shared learning activities and joint initiatives through a council structure.


Learn about leadership and organizational development issues in a collaborative environment alongside leading healthcare institutions. Stay on the cutting edge of evidence-based practice by joining our Leadership Excellence Networks (LENS), one of three premier programs led by the National Center for Healthcare Leadership (NCHL).

LENS Prospective Member Webinar

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LENS Members

Senior leaders from LENS member organizations participate in a variety of shared learning activities and joint initiatives through a council structure.

  • Boston Children’s Hospital *
  • Carilion Clinic *
  • CommonSpirit Health ‡
  • Cone Health *
  • Dartmouth Health §
  • Henry Ford Health *
  • Intermountain Healthcare *
  • Johns Hopkins Medicine *
  • Mass General Brigham *
  • Memorial Health *
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center *
  • Mount Sinai Health System *
  • Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) †
  • Northwell Health *
  • Norton Healthcare † § ~
  • NYU Langone Health † ~ ‡
  • OhioHealth *
  • Prisma Health †
  • Rush University Medical Center *
  •  Sodexo ‡
  • Stanford Children’s Health *
  • Stanford Health Care †
  • UAB Medicine §
  • UC Davis Health ~ ‡ † § 
  • UK HealthCare †
  • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) † ‡
  • Vanderbilt University Medical Center †

* Full, Premium LENS Member

Leadership Development Council

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Council

§ Well-being Council

~ Talent Metrics, Analytics, and Planning Council

LENS Value & Impact

The Leadership Excellence Networks brings tremendous value and impact to the industry. 

  • Leadership Commitment –Unlike open membership organizations, NCHL welcomes healthcare organizations to participate based on their demonstrated commitment and forward-thinking approaches to healthcare leadership.
  • High-Impact Outcomes – LENS councils prioritize their work based on what they believe will provide them with the highest impact outcomes in the short-term with an eye on long-term outcomes for the field.
  • Leveraged Resources – LENS council members seek opportunities to share resources and develop inter-organizational programs with other members.
  • Evidence-Based Data Sharing – The systematic collection of models, metrics, and tools provides a snapshot of current healthcare environments and stimulates discussions on trends and unique areas to develop.
  • Research Support – Members have access to analytic support and current research related to the development of their leaders. 

Cornerstone elements of the program include:  

LENS Steering Committee and Councils

This committee oversees the work of LENS and the various councils.

  • Chair: Patti Adelman, Northwell Health
  • Judith Zola, Boston Children’s Hospital
  • Tara Wiedeman, Carilion Clinic
  • Carlene Caldwell, Cone Health
  • TBD, Henry Ford Health System
  • Marguerite Samms, Intermountain Healthcare
  • Maura Walden, Johns Hopkins Medicine
  • Willette Burnham-Williams, Medical University of South Carolina
  • Erin Flanigan, Mass General Brigham
  • Alice Leefers, Memorial Health
  • Wes Siegal, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Diane Adams, Mount Sinai Health System
  • Ken Broadhurst, NYU Langone Health
  • Alice Wheeler, OhioHealth
  • Manish Shah, Rush University Medical Center
  • Marcia Kent, Stanford Children’s Health

Hospitals and health systems have a responsibility to ensure a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for their employees and patient communities. Nevertheless, health disparities and inequities persist amongst historically marginalized and vulnerable populations. Under-representation of minorities within health systems, equitable care, and building a sense of community throughout the neighborhoods that the health system serves are some of the challenges that need to be met to eradicate these disparities.
The Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Council works to identify best practices to continue erasing these disparities and racial inequities in healthcare by:

  • Working to ensure the health of the community that the organization serves, through health equity programs, community partnerships, and employment opportunities
  • Supporting staff and raising consciousness around racial and social injustice movements
  • Supporting the development of strategic, data-informed DEI and Health Equity priorities, initiatives, and programs that meet the needs of all patients, community members and employees within the hospital and healthcare system
  • Providing members with opportunities to ask specific questions related to their own organizational challenges and solicit strategic advice from leaders who are tackling similar issues within their own hospitals and health systems. Peer-sharing and learning opportunities are an integral component of our program

Today’s healthcare organizations realize they must support the evolving needs of their current leaders and develop the next generation of leaders in increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous environments. Leadership Development Council will focus efforts on:

  • Peer-sharing of health system approaches to leadership development and coaching
  • Education on leadership development best practices
  • Opportunities to engage in research to advance the pragmatic practice of healthcare leadership

With people-related expenses often exceeding 60 percent of total health system operating costs, measuring, predicting, and managing all things “people” is essential to the successful pursuit of high-value care delivery. The Talent Metrics, Analytics, & Planning Council focuses on:

  • Sharing the experiences of our talent metric and analytics journey, identifying challenges, and continuously improving our processes
  • Strengthening capabilities for assessing future workforce needs
  • Discussions on the latest literature surrounding people analytics and workforce planning

Leaders increasingly recognize how important staff well-being is to organizational success. However, there are few clear practice guidelines to inform organization-level efforts, and tremendous variation of practice across organizations. As the industry experiences a historic shift in the workforce, identifying effective and evidence-based strategies to recruit and retain an engaged and healthy workforce is paramount. Launched in 2021, the primary goal of the Well-being council is to help organization leaders make more informed decisions about how to invest their limited resources for maximum well-being impact across their organization. The Council-driven agenda will focus on gaining clarity in areas including:

  • Focus/philosophy: how health systems define well-being, and their approaches to it for different groups (e.g., physicians, clinicians, staff)
  • Organizational structures / staffing: how health systems are organizing their well-being activity
  • Outcomes: developing greater consensus on what/how to measure impact
  • Education/implementation: accelerating dissemination of new learnings regarding items (1) – (3), and supporting adoption of emerging best-practice guidelines broadly across the field

LENS Executive Briefings

The LENS Executive Briefings is a monthly communication that provides highlights of current leadership development-related articles and publications. The briefs focus on topics such as succession planning, talent management, coaching, clinical leadership development, leadership competencies, behavioral change, cultural competency, performance improvement, and measuring learning effectiveness. The briefings are created as a member benefit for NCHL’s Leadership Excellence Networks™ (LENS) and Council senior leaders. An example of a recent Executive Briefing is provided below.

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Coach Certification

For the sixth year in a row, the National Center for Healthcare Leadership (NCHL), is offering our virtual and accredited International Coach Federation (ICF) coach training program. The course also meets HR Certification Institute ® (HRCI) credit hours with the same standard as ICF.

Access to NCHL Events

Throughout the year NCHL hosts a variety of events. Some events are limited to members-only, while others are open to anyone with an interest in the content. In addition to online virtual events, NCHL also hosts in-person events. Visit the pages linked below to learn more. LENS member benefits include access to these events and are based on membership level. To learn more about these events, visit the NCHL events page. 

Become a LENS Member

For additional information and to learn how to become a LENS member, please contact LENS Senior Manager, Ren Lovegood at lens@nchl.org.