Become an ACE



What is an Advocacy Center of Excellence?

An Advocacy Center of Excellence, or ACE, is a Health Center that has achieved certain measures of advocacy success and demonstrated ongoing commitment to advocacy by making it an organizational priority. In addition to creating a true culture of advocacy at the Health Center, including operationalizing advocacy practices and creating supporting infrastructure, ACEs are actively engaged and involved with NACHC and federal policy issues, as well as their state Primary Care Association and key state-level policy issues impacting Health Centers and their patients. There are three levels of ACE status- Bronze, Silver, and Gold- each designation is valid for two years. There is a checklist of items a Health Center must complete in order to become an ACE.

Download more information on the ACE Program here.

Why should my Health Center become an ACE?

In today's environment, Health Centers are ill advised to count on others to deliver the Health Center message and rally critical support to ensure adequate resources  and to stave away challenges. By becoming an ACE you ensure that your Health Center, the patients you serve, and the community at large has a voice in the process and critical decisions being made by the nations policymakers. Much the way Health Centers strive to achieve operational excellence to signal quality and effectiveness, engaging in and operationalizing advocacy should receive the same attention and priority.

By becoming an ACE, you can be confident, knowing that your Health Center's commitment to advocacy furthers the mission of our 50-year movement. ACEs will be listed on the CFAHC website, highlighted on social media and in the weekly Washington Update, provided a web badge for the Health Center's website, and sent a sticker to affix to the Health Center's front door or elsewhere.

Health Centers achieving silver and gold level status will receive unique recognition on our website and social media, and will also be eligible for additional rewards.

The NACHC ACE Checklist

Download a copy of the checklist to review the various action steps a Health Center must complete in order to become an ACE (either Bronze, Silver, or Gold). We've provided some templates and samples below for guidance.

How does my Health Center become an ACE?

1)      Complete the online form OR download a hard copy. Use the suppporting resources below (template advocacy plan, sample board resolution, etc.) to help you complete the checklist, then return to Elizabeth Kwasnik at

2)      NACHC will review checklist and supporting documentation; checklists missing items will not be approved.

3)      NACHC will contact submitter with any questions or to confirm approval as an ACE.

Supporting Resources

Check out the Hispanic Advocacy Center of Excellence, the HACE Program, designed to engage patients and community members in your advocacy efforts, here.  

Click here to check out the list of ACE Health Centers!

Miss the webinar in December 2016? Click here for a recording and a copy of the slides.

For any questions about the ACE program, or for more information, please contact Elizabeth Kwasnik at

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