Priority Health’s Joan Budden receives Women of Achievement and Courage Award

(Grand Rapids, Mich. – June 16, 2020) Joan Budden, President and CEO at Priority Health, was selected as a recipient of the 2020 Women of Achievement and Courage Award by Michigan Women Forward (MWF), an organization dedicated to mentoring and investing in women entrepreneurs across Michigan. Budden is one of three women leaders being recognized state-wide at the WomanUp & Celebrate virtual awards ceremony on June 25. Budden will receive the award alongside Meg Miller Willit, Kim Trent and the Sister Survivors of MSU, USAG and USOC.

“I am extremely honored to receive this award and be recognized as a leader by Michigan Women Forward, an organization that has done tremendous work to empower women and help them succeed,” said Budden. “Mentoring young women and helping them earn a seat at the table continues to be one of my greatest passions, and it has been very rewarding to carry out that mission alongside MWF.” 

Budden was selected by MWF for the Women of Achievement and Courage Award because of her longtime support of the organization, where she previously served as a board member and chair. In addition, MWF recognizes Budden’s role in advancing women’s leadership in West Michigan and the Detroit area. Budden met several qualifications to earn the award, including:

  • A commitment to community service and/or philanthropy
  • Leadership of the highest caliber, which illustrates strength of character, commitment to fostering economic empowerment for Michigan’s women and girls, creativity and strategic thinking
  • Proven track record as a mentor and role model for others
  • Notable achievements in her professional field or community that demonstrates her ability to empower and inspire others
  • Based in Michigan, where she is visible and recognized within her profession and/or community

“With humble beginnings, hard work, a kind and generous spirit and the courage to always do what is right, Joan has excelled at every level of leadership in the workplace,” said Carolyn Cassin, President and CEO of MWF. “Michigan and MWF are better because Joan Budden contributes to what she believes in, does whatever she can to make women’s lives better, and provides a leadership example that all young women can follow.”

In addition to supporting the WomanUp & Celebrate event, Priority Health recently announced a $10,000 donation to MWF’s Michigan Entrepreneur Resilience Fund. This fund provides recovery grants and loans to diverse entrepreneurs and small businesses from underrepresented groups in Michigan who have been negatively impacted by COVID-19. 

Find out more information about the Michigan Women Forward WomanUp & Celebrate event.

About Priority Health:

With over 30 years in business, Priority Health is the second largest health plan in Michigan, offering an extensive portfolio of health benefits options for employer groups and individuals, including Medicare and Medicaid plans. Serving more than 1.3 million members each year and offering a broad network of primary care physicians in Michigan, Priority Health continues to be recognized as a leader for quality, customer service, transparency and product innovation. Learn more about affordable, quality health coverage options from Priority Health

About Michigan Women Forward:

Michigan Women Forward (MWF), a 501(c)(3) organization, has been devoted to achieving social and economic equality for women and girls in Michigan for more than 34 years.  MWF is supported financially and programmatically by many of the state’s top female executives and community volunteers through events like its annual Women of Achievement and Courage Awards and Power of 100 Women donor group.  Through philanthropy and high impact initiatives, MWF’s goal is to ensure a brighter future for women throughout the state.  For more information, visit