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New Mexico Center for Nursing Excellence honors 25 nurses

Monday December 17, 2012
Award winners include, front row, from left, Kay Sanchez, RN; Loretta Diehl, RN; and Stephanie Lew, RN. Middle row, from left, are Martha Snow, RN; Diane Meitzler, RN; Margaret Grady, RN; Patricia Heinzman, RN-BC; Sheila McLeod, RN; Kristina Benavidez, RN: and Lourdes Mendez-Rodriguez, RNC. Back row, from left, are Liz Gober, RN; Valda Baca, RN; Deena Baer, RN; Lauri Lineweaver, RN; Adam Aranda, respiratory therapist and nurse technician; Terri Gibson, RN; Linda Conwell, RN; Denton Holmes; Yvonne Phay, RN; Melicia Chavez, RN; and Cheryl Cothern, RN.
Award winners include, front row, from left, Kay Sanchez, RN; Loretta Diehl, RN; and Stephanie Lew, RN. Middle row, from left, are Martha Snow, RN; Diane Meitzler, RN; Margaret Grady, RN; Patricia Heinzman, RN-BC; Sheila McLeod, RN; Kristina Benavidez, RN: and Lourdes Mendez-Rodriguez, RNC. Back row, from left, are Liz Gober, RN; Valda Baca, RN; Deena Baer, RN; Lauri Lineweaver, RN; Adam Aranda, respiratory therapist and nurse technician; Terri Gibson, RN; Linda Conwell, RN; Denton Holmes; Yvonne Phay, RN; Melicia Chavez, RN; and Cheryl Cothern, RN.
(Photo courtesy of the NM Center for Excellence)
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Twenty-five nurses and one individual were honored Oct. 20 at the 2012 New Mexico Nursing Excellence Awards at the Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort & Spa in Santa Ana Pueblo, N.M. Marie A. Sauve, RN, MSN, FNP, nurse practitioner at the New Mexico VA Health Care System, in Albuquerque, received the top honor as New Mexico Distinguished Nurse of the Year.

As president of the New Mexico Nurse Practitioner Council, Sauve reached out to the state’s rural NPs to actively engage them and urban NPs to change nursing across the state by gaining "access to the governor to discuss healthcare issues that are uniquely affecting New Mexico’s population and nursing professionals," Stacey Schneider, RN, who works with Sauve and nominated her for the honor, said in a news release.

Sauve is credited with assembling an interdisciplinary team to reduce veterans’ wait times from diagnosis of colon cancer to treatment from 44 days to 28 days. She also helped increase education for veterans living with an ostomy and helped develop and promote an ostomy support group for veteran patients.

Sauve mentors new NP students and serves as the "glue that holds together a team of students, medical residents, surgeons and nurses," Schneider said in the release. "Her priorities are aligned with her patients’ needs, and she encourages them to communicate their own and their families’ needs. She acts as an advocate for the nurses who care for the surgical patients and helps model effective and candid communication for the physicians, students and nurses to help them coalesce into an interdisciplinary team."

Denton Holmes of Las Cruces received the Friend of Nursing Award. Loretta Diehl, RN, MSN, OCRN; Eloyda Gomez, BSN; Toni Hall, RN, MSN, BSN, CNP; Stephanie Lew, RN, BSN, MAEd, MSH, CRNA; and Kay L. Sanchez, RN, BSN, were acknowledged as "Legends of Nursing."

Lovelace Health System was the presenting sponsor, and the New Mexico Center for Nursing Excellence hosted the awards competition and gala. Other sponsors included Presbyterian Healthcare Services and University of New Mexico Hospital.

2012 NEW MEXICO NURSING EXCELLENCE AWARD RECIPIENTS

• New Mexico Distinguished Nurse of the Year — Marie A. Sauve, RN, MSN, FNP, nurse practitioner, New Mexico VA Health Care System, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Advanced Practice — Diane J. Meitzler, RN, MSN, Hospice and Palliative Care Program coordinator, New Mexico VA Health Care System, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Ambulatory Care — Lourdes Mendez-Rodriguez, RN,C, oncology nurse, Memorial Medical Center, Las Cruces

• Excellence in Behavioral Health — Deena Baer, RN, director of senior care unit, Artesia General Hospital, Artesia

• Excellence in Case/Quality Management/Managed Care/Informatics — Patricia Heinzman, RN-BC, CCM, nurse case manager, Presbyterian Medical Group/Presbyterian Healthcare Services, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Community Service — Terri Gibson, RN, MSN, BSN, staff nurse, University of New Mexico Hospital, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Critical Care Nursing — Stephanie Sanderson, RN, MSN, CCRN, CSN, clinical nurse specialist, MICU, University of New Mexico Hospital, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Education/Research/Academia — Lauri Lineweaver, RN, MSN, CCRN-CSC, clinical education specialist, Presbyterian Healthcare Services, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Emergency Care — Tracy Cheshire, RN, BCEN, CVRN, TNCC, ASTNA, staff nurse, San Juan Regional Medical Center, Farmington

• Excellence in Home Health/Hospice Nursing — Lizabeth Gober, RN, BSN, BC-CHPN, CNNP, nurse supervisor, University of New Mexico Pediatric Hospital, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Long-Term Care/Rehabilitation — Yvonne Phay, RN, prospective payment system coordinator, Lovelace Rehabilitation Hospital, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Maternal-Child/Women’s Health — Cheryl Cothern, RN, staff nurse, Childbirth Center, San Juan Regional Medical Center, Farmington

• Excellence in Medical/Surgical — Linda Conwell, RN, BSN, charge nurse, Presbyterian Healthcare Services, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Nurse Management/Emerging Leadership — Martha M. Snow, RN, MSN, PMHNP-BC, AP, CARN, interim director of the Substance Use Disorder Treatment Program, New Mexico VA Health Care System, Albuquerque

• Nightingale Award — Valda Baca, RN, staff nurse, Pueblo of Isleta Health Center

• Excellence in Nurse Executive Leadership — Eric Peterson, RN,C, MSN, director of inpatient psychiatry, University of New Mexico Psychiatric Center, Albuquerque

• Outstanding Nursing Student — Adam Aranda, respiratory therapist, Presbyterian Healthcare Systems, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Perioperative Nursing — Sheila McLeod, RN, relief charge nurse/OR circulator, Lovelace Westside Hospital, Albuquerque

• Excellence in Rural Practice — Melecia C. Chavez, RN, staff nurse, New Mexico VA Health Care System, Gallup

• Excellence in School/Community/Public Health — • Margaret E. Grady, RN, MSN, BSN, school nurse, Albuquerque Public Schools

• Touch a Life Award — Kristina Benavidez, RN, OCN, team leader, Memorial Medical Center, Las Cruces

For information, visit www.NMNursingExcellence.org or call 505-889-4518.