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24 SEPT 2018

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[ The Earl G. Reubel Award ]

About Earl G. Reubel


Earl’s great journey through life started in Harlem, where he became the first black salesman allowed to sell in the homes of white New Yorkers. It was at Kirby that he learned the skills of the trade that he further developed to make himself and his family a success. Earl spent 10 years in the United States Army flying helicopters, including his time of service during the Vietnam War. He used his piloting and entrepreneurial skills to create a search and rescue business in Washington State. And, in 1984, Earl and his nephew, Joe Reubel, created Verdan Healthcare which became the platform for Kerma Medical Products, Inc., founded by Earl and his wife, Joyce Kershaw Reubel, in 1991. Through the years, Kerma has established itself in the healthcare industry as a company that manufactures, assembles, and packages medical products and is now one of the largest diversity manufacturer/supplier companies in the healthcare private sector.

Owens & Minor has established this award to honor the late  Earl G. Reubel, whose vision of building a legacy for his family through Kerma Medical Products, Inc., showed the true spirit of his entrepreneurial nature.

Over the years, Kerma Medical has become our most strategic and longest tenured Diversity Supplier and is a key part of our diversity supplier offering to our hospital customers.  The close association between our two companies is one that Owens & Minor values greatly.

Earl G. Reubel was a once in a lifetime, analytical, insightful, caring, intuitive, and natural born businessman.  His business instincts were unprecedented.  Earl will truly be missed by the healthcare industry, and all who knew him.

The Earl G. Reubel Award will honor a woman or minority entrepreneur in healthcare who embodies the qualities that made Earl G. Reubel so special and such a force in the healthcare industry.

Owens & Minor established this award to honor the late Founder and CEO Earl G. Reubel, whose vision of building a legacy for his family through Kerma Medical Products, Inc. is characteristically representative of everything required for being a successful entrepreneur with great civic leadership, a keen business acumen and a strong sense of loyalty.  The illustrious Earl G. Reubel Award recipients reflect the essence of effective advocacy of supplier diversity in healthcare. It is in this spirit that we seek nominations for this prestigious industry recognition as winners are announced during The Annual Healthcare Supplier Diversity Symposium Awards Gala.
The Earl G. Reubel Award will be presented annually in three diversity advocacy impact categories:

  • Outstanding Civic Leader within the healthcare industry
  • Outstanding Diversity Enterprise supplier to the healthcare industry
  • Outstanding Corporate Leadership by a hospital, IDN or GPO

 A few key characteristics to bear in mind when making nominations are the demonstrated impact that nominees have made by

  • Individual: advocating a diverse healthcare supply chain through community outreach and/or education,
  • Diverse Enterprise: delivering differentiated value as an MWVBE medical-surgical supplier or
  • Corporation: fostering a purpose driven culture leveraging diverse suppliers as measured by actual and percentage of annual spend.

General Eligibility

For all three award categories, consideration will be given to women and minorities who are entrepreneurs, executives, professional services providers, or civic leaders who are actively engaged in serving the healthcare industry and who have positively impacted healthcare delivery and/or community wellness.  Nominees must be US citizens.

The Process for making Nomination

Upon selecting an award category, you will be prompted to create an account from which you will nominate a candidate. Through your login access, you may review and edit your nomination anytime until it is submitted for judging. If the nominee is

  • an Individual, please select “CIVIC LEADER”;
  • an MWVBE supplier, please select “DIVERSE ENTERPRISE”;
  • a Hospital (System) or Group Purchasing Organization within healthcare, please select “CORPORATE LEADERSHIP”.

Important Dates

  • Nominations must be submitted by 6:00 PM on August 21, 2018.
  • Two Finalists will be selected in each award category.  Finalists will be notified the week of August 31, 2018.
  • Honorees will be announced at the Annual Healthcare Supplier Diversity Symposium’s  Awards Gala on the evening of September 24, 2018.

Note: Please be advised that Finalists are expected to be present at the Awards Gala

Beyond the presentation of the engraved award?

Honorees may be asked to share a diversity success story or response by video, in writing, and/or in-person at a future event. A press release will be issued nationally by Owens & Minor profiling the Honorees with additional coverage to be featured on the following websites:

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