CHS’s Karla Perez Honored with CHS Distinguished Alumna Award

CHS alumna, Karla J. Perez, and CHS Dean Chukuka S. Enwemeka
CHS alumna, Karla J. Perez, and CHS Dean Chukuka S. Enwemeka

Karla J. Perez, a CHS alumna, who graduated from the College’s Health Care Administration program, and now is group vice president and vice president for Acute Care Services, Universal Health Services (UHS)-Western Region, Las Vegas, was honored with the CHS Distinguished Alumna Award. Perez’s professional accomplishments, strong commitment to duty and outstanding service to the community all make her a distinguished alumna of the College.

She has had an exceptional career and her accomplishments are many. Perez graduated with a B.S. in Medical Records Administration from CHS in 1983, and rose through the medical records administrative ranks to become director of information services before joining the leadership of Valley Hospital Medical Center, Las Vegas, as assistant administrator.

In 1995 she became the chief operating officer of the 280-bed Summerlin Medical Center. From there, she was promoted to managing director and CEO of Desert Springs Hospital Medical Center and then CEO and managing director of Spring Valley Hospital Medical Center in 2002.

She then became group vice president in charge of five hospitals of the Valley Health System, and today as group vice president, manages a conglomerate of eight hospitals in Nevada and California with a multi-billion dollar budget.

Perez has lived and worked in the same Las Vegas community for the past 27 years, and her civic involvement there and beyond is impressive. She has served as president of the Board of Directors for the Nevada Hospital Association; president of the Southern Nevada Healthcare Executive Forum; president of the Nevada Health Information Management Association; chairperson, Board of Directors of WestCare. She serves on the boards of the American Heart Association (earning the Crystal Heart Award), American Red Cross, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (earning “Outstanding Team Player of the Year” award) and American Diabetes Association.

Her hard work and commitment have been recognized by many. Among the other awards she has received are: “Woman of Distinction” Award from the National Association of Women Business Owners in the Medical, Professional Services Category; “Women of Valor” Award; “Southern Nevada’s Most Influential Business Women Award”; and the UWM Graduate of the Decade GOLD Award, 1992.

CHS Dean Chukuka Enwemeka, who presented the award, said, “We all are strongly energized by your successes and accomplishments. You are a living testimony that a little seed planted in our classroom by our faculty and staff can yield a tree mightier than a giant oak”.

Perez acknowledged the award with these words, “I am extremely humbled to be honored with this award. If my achievements can influence and motivate students in the program, then I will feel as though I have been successful.”

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