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AHIMA Presents 2022 Triumph Awards

Honors members with outstanding accomplishments in health information

CHICAGO – October 5, 2022 – The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) will recognize recipients of the 2022 AHIMA Triumph Awards during the General Session of its annual conference in Columbus, Ohio, on October 12. AHIMA presents this honor to members who have demonstrated excellence in their dedication and service to the health information (HI) profession.  

“Congratulations to all the 2022 Triumph Award winners,” said Mary Beth Haugen, MS, RHIA, 2022 AHIMA Triumph Awards Committee chair. “We are honored to recognize their outstanding accomplishments, exemplary service, and dedication to the health information field.”  

Distinguished Member Award 

Diann Smith, MS, RHIA, CHP, FAHIMA, received the Distinguished Member Award, the Association’s highest honor. Smith is known for undertaking large-scale challenges and developing effective strategies and action plans that achieve results. She is a resolute servant leader who formerly served as president and chair of the AHIMA Board of Directors, chair of the AHIMA Foundation Board, and on various AHIMA committees. At the state level, she is a prior recipient of the Legacy and Distinguished Member Awards. Smith is the vice president of health information management services and clinical documentation integrity for Texas Health Resources.  

Educator Award 

Amanda Walden, PhD, RHIA, CHDA, is an associate lecturer in the School of Global Health Management and Informatics at the University of Central Florida (UCF). Since joining UCF, Dr. Walden has demonstrated excellence in innovative teaching, research, and advocacy. Her experience in acute care, behavioral health, and physician practices bring real-world knowledge into the classroom. Dr. Walden mentors future HI professionals with leadership and networking opportunities. She has initiated countless affordability measures to cut down costs for her students including first-day access affordability programs, open educational resources, and library-sourced materials. 

Student Award 

Diana Morales graduated with a master’s in health information management from the University of Puerto Rico, Medical Sciences Campus. In 2026, Morales plans to earn a doctorate in pharmacy to apply her health information management knowledge to clinical practice in the pharmacy field. As a student, she represented her classmates as a liaison between faculty and students and as class president. Viewed by her peers as a knowledgeable resource, she is skilled in various HI areas with an emphasis on research. 

Influencer Award  

Chris Apgar, CISSP, CCISO, posthumously received the Influencer Award for his commitment and contributions to the health information profession. As a life-long advocate, Apgar educated healthcare organizations, professionals, and various agencies on the proper use and disclosure of health information. He shared his expertise with others, presenting at national, state, and local conferences and authoring many articles for the Journal of AHIMA, among other publications. In his home state of Oregon, he was a sought-after expert who developed educational materials used by members of the Oregon Medical Association. Apgar inspired others to get involved with AHIMA both in Oregon and nationally.  

The AHIMA Triumph Award program is sponsored by 3M Healthcare.  


About AHIMA 

AHIMA is a global nonprofit association of health information (HI) professionals with more than 71,000 members and more than 100,000 credentials in the field. The AHIMA mission of empowering people to impact health® drives our members and credentialed HI professionals to ensure that health information is accurate, complete, and available to patients and providers. Our leaders work at the intersection of healthcare, technology, and business and are found in data integrity and information privacy job functions worldwide. 

Erin Wendel-Ritter 


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