NHA honors Nebraska healthcare heroes with ‘The Caring Kind’ award

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LINCOLN, Neb. (KMTV) – A press release from the Nebraska Hospital Association announced that 83 Nebraska hospital employees will be recognized for their service by presenting them with The Caring Kind award.

See the press release below:

The Nebraska Hospital Association (NHA) recognized 83 Nebraska hospital employees for their exemplary service in health care by presenting them with the organization’s prestigious The Caring Kind award.

For 43 years, The Caring Kind award has recognized Nebraska’s most caring and compassionate healthcare heroes. This award honors outstanding healthcare employees who have demonstrated compassion for patients, cooperation with colleagues, and dedication to excellence in their job responsibilities.

“This award demonstrates the kindness, care, dedication and commitment of these individuals to their hospitals,” commented Jeremy Nordquist, President, NHA. “The Caring Kind Award is a celebration of our Nebraska healthcare heroes and the extraordinary work they do every day to provide top-notch patient care in our hospitals.”

Hospitals across the state select a recipient of The Caring Kind award within their respective institutions for recognition. The winners were recognized at a special luncheon at the NHA’s annual convention on Friday, October 21 at the Embassy Suites conference center in La Vista.

More than 2,700 caring, skilled and dedicated healthcare professionals have received this award since its inception in 1979.

The NHA congratulates the winners of The Caring Kind award for 2022:

Chellie Autrey, RT
Kimball Health Services, Kimball

Bonnie Baum, Health Information Management
Boone County Health Center, Albion

Hanne Beldin, Stroke Program Coordinator
CHI Health St. Elizabeth, Lincoln

Justin Beller, Coffee Station Cook, Nutrition Services
Methodist Hospital, Omaha

Sherri Billinger, Admissions Specialist
Webster County Community Hospital, Red Cloud

Katie Blackwell, RT(R)(N)(ARRT), Nuclear Medicine Technologist
Mary Lanning Healthcare, Hastings

Michelle Blair, Senior Patient Access Associate
Nebraska Medicine, Omaha

Kim Brennfoerder, RN, Rural Health Clinic Supervisor
Thayer County Health Services, Hebron

Katie Bruenig, RDCS, AE, Radiographer Limited
Saunders Medical Center, Wahoo

Deborah Burmester, RN
Franciscan Health Clinic, West Point

Holly Caballero, MA, Medical Assistant
OrthoNebraska, Omaha

April Campbell, COVID-19 screening officer
Memorial Community Health, Aurora

Jared Carter, Dietary Services Assistant Cook
Box Butte General Hospital, Alliance

Marcie Chinn, CEST, Environmental Services Specialist
Providence Medical Center, Wayne

Thea Cole, Bereavement and Volunteer Coordinator/Activity Director
Cozad Community Health System, Cozad

Danielle Cooper, MA, long-term care aide
York General Hearthstone, York

Kelley Creek, phlebotomist
CHI Health St. Mary’s, Nebraska City

Angela Cunningham, RPN, central organizer
Tri Valley Health System, Cambridge

Deborah Dahlke, chaplain
CHI Health Nebraska Heart, Lincoln

Brooke Darby, RN, Progressive Care Unit
Kearney Regional Medical Center, Kearney

Larissa Diekmann, respiratory therapy supervisor
CHI Health Immanuel Medical Center, Omaha

Jessica Douglas, Environmental Services Team Leader
West Holt Medical Services, Atkinson

Gloria Ferreira, Environmental Services Housekeeping Assistant
Children’s Hospital and Medical Center, Omaha

Diane Fort, RT(R), radiology technologist
Fillmore Departmental Hospital, Geneva

Casey Fowler, MPA-C, Physician Assistant, Orthopedics
Great Plains Health, North Platte

Wayne Franzen, CNA/MA, Activities Coordinator
Jefferson Community Health & Life Gardenside, Fairbury

Deb Frederick, Administrative Assistant
Avera St. Anthony’s Hospital, O’Neill

Betty Froehlich, RN, BSN, MS, Regulatory Compliance Coordinator
Faith Regional Health Services, Norfolk

Dejohn (DJ) Garrison, Respiratory Technician
CHI Health Lakeside, Omaha

Ryan Geiler, director of clinical applications, population health, data analytics and acting chief information officer
Community Medical Center, Inc., Falls City

Jessie Gipfert, RT, CT Radiology Technician
Sidney Regional Medical Center, Sidney

Marisol Hackman, Coordinator, Clinical Operations
Boys Town National Research Hospital, Boys Town

Angela Hartley, Environmental Technician
Health Bryan, Lincoln

Jessica Hartman, RN, Quality Analyst
Chadron Community Hospital and Health Services, Chadron

Carmen Heller, RN, Oncology Navigator
Methodist Fremont Health, Fremont

Kevin Henning, Materials Management Assistant
Crete Region Medical Center, Crete

Eddie Hernandez, Patient Services
Howard County Medical Center, St. Paul

Hannah Hild, RN, BSN Director of Ambulatory Services
Lexington Regional Health Center, Lexington

Jody Hoffart, Department Support Assistant
CHI Health Schuyler, Schuyler

Laura Huber, RN, Care Nurse
Henderson Health Care Services, Henderson

Sandy Jacobson, CDM, CMFPP, Director of Nutrition Services
Gothenburg Health, Gothenburg

Claudia Javier, RN, BSN, nurse
Madonna Rehabilitation Hospitals, Omaha

Cassie Johnson, RN, Case Manager/Discharge Planner
Gordon Memorial Hospital District, Gordon

Mark Klabunde, PharmD, Director of Pharmacy
Kearney County Health Services, Minden

Josephine “Josie” Kopal, RN, Charge Nurse – ICU
CHI Health Creighton University Medical Center – Bergan Mercy, Omaha

Julie Krotzinger, RN, BSN, Specialty Clinic Director
Brodstone Healthcare, Superior

Kayla Kusek, RN, House Supervisor
Jennie M. Melham Memorial Medical Center, Broken Bow

Candy Lussetto, RN, Specialized Clinic Director
Morrill County Community Hospital, Bridgeport

Charlotte Marks, RN, BSN, Care Transition Nurse and Patient Educator
Community Hospital, McCook

Miranda Marlin, MSN, RN, Director of Quality Programs
Dundy County Hospital, Benkelman

Sally Marshall, Patient Access Representative
Memorial Community Hospital and Health System, Blair

Pam Meyer, RN, Medical Floor and Emergency Room
Avera Creighton Hospital, Creighton

Louis (Lou) Neujahr, Maintenance Mechanic
Annie Jeffrey Memorial County Health Center, Osceola

Tatum Pitkin, Physiotherapy Assistant
Pender Community Hospital, Pender

Stacy Polski, RPN, Clinical Nurse Specialist
Howard County Medical Center, St. Paul

Marvi Pruden, RN, Director of Infection Control, Nursing Supervisor and Room Nurse
Antelope Memorial Hospital, Neligh

Beau Rapien, RN, charge nurse
CHI Health St. Francis, Grand Island

Kristin Rasmussen, Registered Nurse
Columbus Community Hospital, Columbus

Kathryn Renning, RN, Director of Nursing
Cherry County Hospital and Clinic, Valentine’s Day

Sandra Rippe, Director of Community Outreach and Patient Relations
Syracuse Area Health, Syracuse

Israel Rodriguez, phlebotomist III
Methodist Women’s Hospital, Omaha

Vickie Runyon, RN, Security Officer
Harlan County Health System, Alma

Melissa Rupp, Chief Occupational Health Nurse
Western Regional Health Services, Scottsbluff

RaeAnn Schlenker, ARDMS (AB BR OB/GYN), RVT (VT), Multi-Modality Tech II
Ogallala Community Hospital, Ogallala

Carol Schnell, Human Resources Assistant/Payroll Specialist
Memorial Health Care Systems, Seward

Léa Schultz, cook
Osmond General Hospital, Osmond

Sharon Schuster, Chaplain
Beatrice Community Hospital and Health Center, Beatrice

KarNel Schwartz, CMA, Clinical Coordinator
West Garden Regional County, Oshkosh

Becky Shafer, RN, Associate Director of Nursing
Friend, Friend Community Health System

Lorrie Shaul, housekeeper
Rock County Hospital, Bassett

Theresa Shelton, Executive Administrative Assistant
Nemaha County Hospital, Auburn

Diane Sowden, hostess
Phelps Memorial Health Centre, Holdrege

Judy Spath, RN, Night Nurse
Twelve Clans Unity Hospital, Winnebago

Nathan Suehl, Senior Lab Technologist
Butler County Health Care Center, David City

Elizabeth (Betty) Sutton, Nuclear Medical Technician
CHI Health Midlands Hospital, Papillion

Sasha Taylor, RN, Care Nurse
Brown County Hospital, Ainsworth

Megan Trout, MLT (ASCP), Medical Laboratory Technician
Johnson County Hospital, Tecumseh

Sonja Ventura, Patient Care Technician
Grand Island Regional Medical Center, Grand Island

Cindy Walters, dietary manager
Pawnee County Memorial Hospital, Town of Pawnee

Julie Wells, RPN, Nurse Practitioner
CHI Health Plainview, Plainview

Erika White, DPT, physiotherapist
Valley County Health System, Ord

Kassie Young, CNA, Certified Practical Nurse
Merrick Medical Center, Downtown

Paul Zapata, maintenance mechanic
CHI Health Good Samaritan, Kearney

The mission of the Nebraska Hospital Association is to serve its members by being the trusted leader in improving the health, well-being, and quality of life for all Nebraskans. Its vision is to be the state’s most influential, trusted, and respected voice in health care policy and advocacy, a valuable resource of information and knowledge, and a leader in leader in patient safety.

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