CHICAGO — The American Medical Association (AMA) presented Mark Andrejeski, the recently retired executive vice president of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), with the Medical Executive Lifetime Achievement Award. The award honors a medical association executive who has contributed substantially to the goals and ideals of the medical profession.

“When Mark Andrejeski started at ACR, it was a fledgling society recently separated from the Arthritis Foundation. Under his tireless leadership, ACR membership has grown to more than 9,500 rheumatology professionals worldwide. Organized medicine depends on exceptional leaders like him to ensure our profession is represented at the state and federal levels. It is an honor to present him with this award for a lifetime of service,” said AMA Board Chair Russ Kridel, M.D.

Andrejeski joined ACR in 1987 after 14 years with the American Heart Association. In 1989, he guided the organization through its renaming to the American College of Rheumatology after being known as the American Rheumatism Association since 1937. In the late 90’s, Andrejeski introduced advocacy efforts to ensure fair payer reimbursements for rheumatologists when the FDA approved biologic therapies. He established a robust government affairs program at ACR that continues to focus on federal, state and regulatory policies affecting rheumatology professionals today.

In 2002, Andrejeski played a pivotal role in helping the Rheumatology Research fund its first rheumatology fellowship grants to train new rheumatology professionals. Under his leadership, the ACR has donated more than $22.5 million to support the foundation’s mission.

The AMA presented the award to Andrejeski during the November 2020 Special Meeting of the AMA House of Delegates.

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