Each year during Nurses Week, the UPMC Center for Nursing Excellence recognizes nurses system-wide with awards based on their dedication to patient care, innovation and impact on colleagues and the nursing profession as a whole.
“Our nurses’ commitment, perseverance and compassion are the driving force guiding our communities during this very unique time. I am proud of our nurses’ response and thankful for the opportunity to recognize their impact during Nurses Week,” said Holly Lorenz, R.N., M.S.N., UPMC Chief Nurse Executive.
2020 Award Winners:
Rising Star in Clinical Practice — Sarah Foley, B.S.N, R.N., professional staff nurse, UPMC St. Margaret
The Rising Star Award is presented to a nurse within two years of entry into the profession who demonstrates high performance and the greatest potential to make significant contributions to nursing practice.
Foley was nominated by colleagues because she “exemplifies the role of a positive team member engaged and ready for a career in nursing,” and demonstrates “how to interact with patients, building trust in the nursing profession and trust in her fellow staff members along the way.”
Champion of Nursing — Jeannine Joseph, health unit coordinator, UPMC Jameson
The Champion of Nursing Award is presented to an individual who has a distinguished track record of promoting and advancing the profession of nursing within UPMC. The Champion of Nursing is a leader, role model and advocate for nursing.
Joseph’s nomination described her as “a role model and an advocate for nursing,” and explained how she, “provides the nursing staff with much more than messages or answering the call lights.”
Legacy of Nursing — Lauren Saul, D.N.P., R.N., A.C.N.S., B.C., advanced clinical education specialist, UPMC Shadyside
The Legacy of Nursing Award is presented to a nurse who has been a catalyst within professional nursing. This nurse has advanced the profession through practice, research, education, writing, leadership or clinical practice throughout their career.
Saul’s nomination explained the ways she “leads change through role modeling, evidence-based practice changes, knowledge sharing and innovation.”
Spirit of Inclusion — Tyler Traister, D.N.P., R.N.-B.C., C.H.P.N., C.N.E., O.C.N., C.T.N.-A., unit director, UPMC Shadyside
The Spirit of Inclusion Award is presented to a nurse who lives the spirit of inclusion in their day-to-day interactions with patients, families and associates. In addition, this person is the voice of dignity and respect through active involvement in community and nursing organizations.
Traister’s nomination reflects his “areas of expertise in LGBTQ health – cultural competency, population health, sex trafficking diversity and inclusion.” Most recently he has presented “Best Practices in Caring for LGBTQ Patients and Significant Others” to nurses locally, regionally and nationally.
Additionally, Traister is working on a book for publication in nursing education curriculum programs to educate nursing students on how to treat patients, families and significant others on caring for those with LGBTQ identities with dignity and respect throughout their course of treatment.
Leading with Wisdom — Emily Stutzman-Shaulis, M.S.N., R.N., advanced clinical education specialist, UPMC Somerset
The Leading with Wisdom Award is presented to a nursing leader who has led significant change within UPMC as a patient advocate and leader, or as a nurse leader who has advanced the quality of work life for nursing within a business unit or across the system.
According to her nomination, “Emily used innovation and creativity to develop house-wide educational modules and training to further advance the clinical competencies of patient care staff, as well as the education of all staff at the business unit. She single-handedly has coordinated training essential for the clinical staff by hosting numerous skills labs that are well attended and make a difference for everyone.”
Outstanding Preceptor — Nancy Stynchula, B.S.N., R.N., senior professional staff nurse II, UPMC Mercy
The Outstanding Preceptor Award is presented to a nurse who has demonstrated excellence in precepting new staff and/or students. They demonstrate enthusiasm for teaching, promote learning and a healthy work environment.
Stynchula has 36 years of nursing experience that “shows in her bedside manner and teaching capability,” according to her nomination. “Patients praise her at discharge and leave the hospital knowing they received the best possible care.”
Outstanding Patient Advocate — Carlene DeBee, B.S.N., R.N., outpatient nurse coordinator, General Academic Pediatrics at Whole Child Wellness Clinic
The Patient Advocate Award is presented to a nurse who goes above and beyond in helping their patients understand their diagnosis and make the best decisions about their health. This nurse promotes, advocates for and strives to protect the health, safety and rights of the patient.
DeBee’s nomination describes the way she “advocates for families and children who live in less than stable circumstances. She helps families find balance in unpredictable circumstances and truly provides them with support.”
For further information on careers in nursing at UPMC, visit the UPMC Center for Nursing Excellence.