FARMINGTON — Franklin Community Health Network announced Thursday evening that Dr. Michele McCormick is this year’s recipient of the Leadership Award.

McCormick was not at the annual meeting to accept the award, but L. Clinton Boothby, chairman of the board of directors, read the proclamation.

McCormick is a board-certified pediatrician who has served the community and organization for over 20 years, Boothby said.

McCormick was also recognized for “leading the way in the development of the three-year implementation strategy for the FCHN Community Health Needs Assessment addressing issues in poverty, access to health care and obesity,” Boothby said.

She is also a compassionate, inspirational and innovative person, he said.

Despite the financial challenges of the past couple of years, this was a good year, Boothby said before the announcement.

“There is a good vibe here now,” he said.

Highlights include the hospital achieving an “outstanding report” from the Joint Commission’s review, he said. The commission is responsible for reviewing and rating 20,000 hospitals.

Another highlight is The Leapfrog Group, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit that tracks health care safety, quality and value. It gave Franklin Memorial an “A” for safety last month.

The board has worked over the year to consider joining other MaineHealth hospitals in a systemwide unification proposal, he said.

“This proposal will create a single financial structure across the MaineHealth system aimed at preserving community hospitals and making sure each community gets the services it needs,” according to Boothby’s report. “Unification of the system will benefit Franklin Community Health Network, both in terms of our care delivery options and the relentless financial pressures we have faced, essentially alone.”

It has been a long process but the board is expected to vote next month, he said.

If one management group is accepted, each individual hospital would continue to have its own board of trustees consisting of community members and staff, he said.

“It is critical to have the voice and input from the community,” Timothy Churchill, interim president and chief executive officer, said after the meeting.

The board’s duties would be different, but it would still be responsible for ongoing operations, Boothby said.

This past year has had some financial challenges, but it was better than previous years, Boothby said, after the meeting. He said he expects the coming year to be even better.

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