Press Releases

Josie Abboud Honored With 2020 ICAN Leadership Award

Published: Aug. 20, 2020

The Institute for Career Advancement Needs (ICAN), in partnership with Kiewit, is proud to announce the fifth recipient of the ICAN Leadership Award.

Josie Abboud, president and CEO of Methodist Hospital and Methodist Women’s Hospital, received the award at the 27th annual ICAN Women’s Leadership Conference held virtually on Aug. 19.

The ICAN Leadership Award was designed to honor an individual at any leadership level who has taken the necessary steps to redefine leadership in their organization through collaboration, compassion, confidence and creativity – the four C's. A panel of community leaders chose Abboud from a pool of nominated candidates for her success as a leader and for demonstrating those four C's. 

This year’s ICAN Women’s Leadership Conference theme, Ensemble: Elevating Team Performance, describes Abboud perfectly. She continually focuses on teamwork, collaboration, diversity, networking and connectivity.

Josie Abboud, FACHE, at a virtual incident command
meeting with William Lydiatt, MD,  vice president of
medical affairs and chief medical officer for Methodist
Hospital and Methodist Women's Hospital.

This year in particular, her ability to lead a team of over 3,400 was never more apparent than when COVID-19 first surfaced in Omaha – with the first patient being diagnosed at Methodist Hospital. Many staff members logged long hours, and Abboud was right there along with them, working hand in hand with doctors, nurses and staff navigating the pandemic. Through the constantly changing situation, she remained accessible, strong and a cheerleader for everyone. Methodist is stronger, better and well-prepared for what lies ahead in the coming months because of her leadership, knowledge, compassion, confidence, collaboration and creativity during this unprecedented time.

Abboud began her career at Methodist in 1996 as a critical care staff nurse, and she’s held a variety of leadership roles including service executive, vice president, executive vice president and chief operating officer. 

She is an active community leader and has served on the board of trustees of the Nebraska Hospital Association, Hospice House, Creighton Prep, Marian High School Board of Directors, Creighton University’s College of Nursing Advisory Board, American Cancer Society, Christ the King’s Education Steering Board, Archbishop’s Committee for Development, Visiting Nurse Association, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, 6-state High Plains Division board of the American Cancer Society, United Way’s 2013 Campaign, Community Health Charities and Child Saving Institute.

“I am very blessed, fortunate and honored to work at an organization, Methodist, that has allowed me the opportunity to grow, develop and hone my ability to collaborate, show my compassion, build my confidence and exhibit my creativity,” Abboud said. “Methodist, and all those I’m so privileged to work with each day, make this possible, and I’m grateful to all of them.” 

Abboud at the Hope Lodge ribbon cutting in 2018.

“Josie is a proven leader who successfully elevated her team’s performance during some of the toughest and most uncertain times in Omaha’s history,” said ICAN President and CEO Susan Henricks. “She represents everything that the ICAN Leadership Award stands for, and we are lucky to have her leadership and vision in our community. We were honored to present this well-deserved award to Josie.”

ICAN and Kiewit were pleased with the number of nominations received displaying strong corporate, nonprofit and organizational leadership across our community at all levels. The award – presented for the first time in 2016 to SAC Federal Credit Union’s Gail DeBoer, to Tim Burke of OPPD in 2017, Patricia Kearns of QLI in 2018 and Nancy Pridal of Lamp Rynearson in 2019 – was created after careful research and ICAN’s nearly 40 years of working with leaders from across the globe. ICAN believes that current leaders, and those of the future, need to possess the skills of the four C's in order to successfully lead their organizations and communities in an ever-changing and complex global economy. 

Kiewit Corporation, headquartered in Omaha and one of North America’s largest construction and engineering organizations, helped develop the criteria for the ICAN Leadership Award and sponsors the ICAN Leadership Award each year. Kiewit’s Vice President, Corporate Safety Director Alicia Edsen, presented Josie Abboud the award during the virtual conference.

“We are proud to partner with ICAN to present Josie Abboud with the 2020 ICAN Leadership Award,” Edsen said. “Josie fully represents the qualities ICAN and Kiewit look to recognize with this award. She and all the other health professionals should be commended for their dedicated work during the pandemic and every day.”

For additional information on the award, visit 

Nominations for the 2021 ICAN Leadership Award will open in January 2021.