Health Center Advocacy, Health Center News, Uncategorized

Our ACE Health Centers: Advocacy Centers of Excellence

Sarah Franḉois is the Deputy Director of NACHC’s National Grassroots Advocacy department.

NACHC believes that advocacy is critical to sustaining the Community Health Center movement. Our Grassroots Advocacy department leads multiple initiatives to support health centers in engaging in advocacy to educate elected officials and other policymakers about the incredible impact health centers make in their communities. One of these initiatives is our Advocacy Center of Excellence program.

An Advocacy Center of Excellence (ACE) is recognized for creating a culture of advocacy within their organization to ensure policymakers at all levels of government commit to supporting the affordable, equitable, and innovative care that health centers provide. There are three ACE designations—Bronze, Silver, and Gold—that distinguish tiered levels of consistent engagement and demonstrate an ongoing commitment to making advocacy an organizational priority.

Visit the most current list of ACEs.

Requirements to receive an ACE designation

ACEs must meet specific requirements and actively partner with NACHC on federal policy issues and partner with their state Primary Care Association (PCA) on regional policy issues that impact America’s 30 million health center patients.

ACE applications accepted on a rolling basis

Other things to note about ACEs:

  • ACE applications are accepted on a rolling basis (no set deadline)
  • Each ACE designation is valid for two years but health centers may apply to upgrade their status at any time (e.g., they don’t have to wait two years to upgrade from bronze to silver)
  • PCAs are encouraged to join the ACE program as well, but because they have a unique structure, do not follow the same application requirements as health centers. PCAs should contact our team directly to discuss details related to ACE participation.

We celebrate the many health centers that have taken impressive actions to obtain exclusive ACE status! Learn more about how your health center can participate in the ACE program and sign up for the weekly Washington Update to get the latest information about health center advocacy priorities.

Questions? Contact Sarah Francois at

View additional details on NACHC’s Grassroots Advocacy website.