CHATHAM, Mass. – The American Hospital Association (AHA), in partnership with the Massachusetts Hospital Association has awarded David Storto, President of Partners Continuing Care and Spaulding Rehabilitation Network, with the American Hospital Association Grassroots Champions Award.  As a 2015 Grassroots Champion Storto is being recognized for his exceptional leadership in generating grassroots and community activity in support of a hospital’s mission.

The American Hospital Association Grassroots Champions Award was created to recognize those hospital leaders who most effectively educate elected officials on how major issues affect the hospital’s vital role in the community, who have done an exemplary job in broadening the base of community support for the hospital, and is a tireless advocate for the hospital and its patients. In addition to his role at Partners Continuing Care and Spaulding, Storto is currently a Delegate to the AHA’s Regional Policy Board 1 and in that capacity participates in shaping and carrying out AHA policy.

“We depend upon strong voices like yours to help tell the story of hospitals as cornerstones of the communities they serve,” said Rich Umbdenstock, AHA president and CEO.  “This award is a small token of our appreciation for your hard work and dedication to improving health and health care in America.”

“David is a well-established and well known member of the Massachusetts post-acute care community, advocating on behalf of the individuals with disabilities that Spaulding serves for better community access and inclusion," said Lynn Nicholas, President & CEO of the Massachusetts Hospital Association. “He is in regular contact with members of our state and federal delegations, has testified in support of vital strategic priorities before elected officials in Massachusetts and Washington, D.C. and provides consistent updates to the Partners Continuing Care and Spaulding Rehabilitation Network’s supporters on legislative imperatives.”

“His dedication comes through in many aspects of his life. After the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013, David, a dedicated runner who had planned to make that his final Boston Marathon, was instead stopped before finishing the race and ended up assisting with the transfer of some patients to Spaulding. Thirty-two of the most critically injured survivors were treated over many months throughout Spaulding and Partners HealthCare at Home, including the new Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital that opened just days after the Marathon bombing and serves as a national model. David then ran the 2014 Boston Marathon to finish what he’d started a year earlier,” Nicholas added.

The Grassroots Champion award is presented annually to one individual from each state with winners being chosen by the state association. Storto is one of 50 individuals honored this year.