Representative Gottheimer established the Fifth District “Hometown Heroes” Awards in 2017 to honor ordinary citizens who are doing extraordinary things to improve the lives of others in the 5th Congressional District. After one of the worst healthcare crises in recent history, this year’s awards took on new meaning as Rep. Gottheimer honored local first responders, veterans, students, life-saving bystanders, volunteers, Scouts, community leaders, and residents during a ceremony held at the Hackensack Performing Arts Center.
Fifth District Hometown Heroes Awards were presented to more than sixty Fifth District residents, like Dr. Tank, to recognize their dedication to helping improve the lives of their neighbors, families, and communities.
“During the best of times, I consider our doctors, nurses, and support teams to be healthcare heroes. But in the midst of COVID-19, they were asked to step up in new and unprecedented ways. Lisa Tank, M.D., chief medical officer at Hackensack University Medical Center, calmly led us through this pandemic, with experience and intelligence, compassion, reassurance, science and the utmost professionalism,” said Mark Sparta, FACHE, president and chief hospital executive, Hackensack University Medical Center and executive vice president of Population Health, Hackensack Meridian Health. “She is our heroes’ hero and she dedicated herself to keeping our teams focused and healthy so that they could, in turn, do the same for our communities during the most challenging time in healthcare history.”
“We are lucky to have so many unsung heroes in our communities, whose quiet power of service goes on every day without the recognition they truly deserve. They just do it because they care. Today is their day,” said Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5). “It goes without saying that the past nearly year and a half has been an incredibly challenging time for our country — with a pandemic looming over us, sick loved ones and neighbors, and a drumbeat of economic uncertainty. If you pick up the paper, turn on cable news or flip through social media, there is far more attention being placed on what’s going wrong with America, and far too little attention on what’s going right. We should focus more on what unites us, as opposed to what divides us — and spend more time focusing on those who give back to our country and communities.”
Gottheimer continued, “Today’s Hometown Heroes were all nominated by leaders from our community — including our elected officials, nonprofit and faith leaders, friends, family members, first responders, and neighbors who believe that they truly deserve the title. These individuals come from all walks of life, but they all share an idea that is particularly special: they embody our Jersey Values and make our community such a special place to live, work, and raise a family. They help us build the more perfect union we should all be fighting for. We should all work to live up to their example.”
“I am honored to receive this award from Congressman Josh Gottheimer and be in the company of such esteemed members of our community,” said Dr. Tank. “The past year and a half have been challenging, to say the least, and I’m so grateful to be working with an incredible, dedicated and inspiring team of healthcare professionals with whom I share this award.”
Congratulations to Dr. Tank and all the recipients on their well-deserved recognition as Hometown Heroes.