Tenet Heroes Hall of FameThe Tenet Heroes program celebrates those individuals who go above and beyond their daily job responsibilities to make a meaningful impact within their respective communities. Tenet Heroes positively impact patients and those around them, and they embrace the importance of hope and resilience even in the face of adversity.
In 2020, more than 90 individuals and/or teams were named Tenet Heroes, 26 of whom were inducted into The Tenet Heroes’ Hall of Fame, the Company’s highest honor for employees.
Ruth Antony, RN, BSNSaint Francis Hospital - Memphis
Ruth is a Registered Nurse in the Medical Surgical Unit at Saint Francis Hospital - Memphis. As someone who is known for her expansive knowledge and sweet spirit, she has been a compassionate caregiver for her patients and their families for more than 17 years. Her warm and caring spirit led her to receive The University of Tennessee Health Science Center’s College of Nursing Bedside Nurse Hero Award and a Daisy Award for Extraordinary Nurses. One recent patient penned, “Ruth came into my room and prayed for me. She made an impact on my life that will last through eternity.” Ruth serves as a preceptor and mentor to new nurses. She is deeply rooted in her faith. Outside of work, Ruth is very involved in the community. She works with her children’s school and church. She conducts Bible study at her home and disciples other.
Caroline BellThe Outpatient Center of Delray
Delray Beach, FL
As a nurse, Caroline goes out of her way to ensure her patients and their family members are comfortable and is frequently recognized by her patients. She provides reassurance to all around her, as seen by one patient who witnessed her assisting another
nurse with an IV, comforting the patient in the process. Another patient commented that, despite her long shift, Caroline cared for each patient at the end of the day as if it was her first and only.
A true patient advocate, Caroline’s experience and passion inspire her to be a champion for patient safety and experience. She has designed many solutions to improve patient paperwork and flow, and specifically has taken point on providing a consistently positive experience for repeat pain management patients.
Stefani BohmfalkBaptist Medical Center
San Antonio, TX
As Clinical Manager, Stefani was instrumental in developing the first COVID-19 unit at Baptist Medical Center (BMC) in anticipation of the arrival of quarantined passengers from the Diamond Princess Cruise Ship and Wuhan evacuees. She established COVID isolation zones, triage and PPE processes, as well as scheduling and infection control practices. Early on, Stefani volunteered in New York City and used her experience there to develop best practices and processes at BMC. She is a Sepsis Champion and developed a Code Sepsis algorithm, improving code calling compliance by over 15%. Stefani is active in the hospital’s Celebration Committee, Resuscitation Committee, ED Admit Process Task Force, Stroke Committee, and Chest Pain Committee, and attends regional ED Council and STRAC meetings. Above and beyond these clinical achievements, is Stefani’s dedication to her patients. She gets to know patients personally and keeps in touch with many after their discharge; she still communicates with the hospital’s first suspected COVID patient through cards and letters.
Melissa BowmanMetroWest Medical Center
Following the initial COVID-19 surge, Melissa worked to ensure that her team would be well prepared for the future by reviewing gaps and opportunities. As a leader of her department, Melissa was able to redeploy her team of PAs from an essentially closed surgical service to provide clinical support to the areas of greatest need. Facing a severe shortage of critical care providers, Melissa supported and encouraged her team by giving them the emotional and clinical support they needed to fill gaps in provider coverage. Melissa's selfless attitude provided a boost to the ICU staff. She is always focused on doing the right thing and how we can make things better for our patients and her fellow colleagues.
Doug BozemanCarondelet St. Joseph’s Hospital
As a physical therapist, chronic pain specialist, and a remote adjunct professor helping educate future health professionals, Doug is contributing to the wellness of his community daily. As a lifelong learner, he continues his self-improvement journey taking additional certification courses, even studying during his meal breaks. During the pandemic, he showed his commitment to his community and profession by stepping up into newly needed positions to support patient care. Inspired by seeing patients on dialysis, Doug became a kidney donor, saying, "I wanted to do something positive and bring something good into the world this year," and has since donated his left kidney. His coworkers describe Doug as selfless, compassionate, and “one of the most versatile and helpful employees.”
Karin BrownCenter for Advanced Surgery
Karin currently serves as the facility’s clinical director. She brings valuable military experience, starting at age 18 as a combat medic, to the Center for Advanced Surgery. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Karin was deployed to support continued surgical procedures for the Marine Corps in Camp Pendleton.
At the facility, Karin is known for improving communication between departments by helping to incorporate daily huddles into the center’s routine. She values teamwork and can be found providing patient care, taking the garbage out, unpacking boxes, mentoring and coaching others, providing empathy and comfort for patients and helping with service recovery. Karin recognizes the hard work of her team and was integral in implementing the “Kudos Board” for staff notes of appreciation.
Karin’s team was particularly impressed with her efforts to highlight the importance of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October. She hosted a pumpkin decorating contest, helping to raise over $1,700 for a local charity called Impact One Breast Cancer Foundation that provides “Hope Boxes” for women who have been newly diagnosed with breast cancer.
Minda CacholaDesert Regional Medical Center
Palm Springs, CA
A Certified Nursing Assistant with 28 years of experience at Desert Regional Medical Center, it is more than Minda’s clinical skills that make her so exceptional. Minda works on a designated COVID-Care Unit. She recognized how isolated her patients felt and took extra steps to make them feel better: hanging up photos of loved ones on the walls of hospital rooms, making sure that video visits happened, and spending hours talking with patients, calming their fears, and praying with those who asked.
As one patient wrote, “Minda was truly an angel on earth and I will forever be grateful for her care, compassion, and tireless work. Putting yourself and loved ones at risk to help others is the most noble act of selfless love. So many days I was afraid, and I was comforted by her during the most terrifying experience of my life.” Her efforts were so outstanding that local businesses and the NBC news station recognized her as a “Healthcare Hero.” Minda is a shining example of the people that make Desert Regional “a community built on care.”
Santiago D. Chambers, CHSP CHEPFountain Valley Regional Hospital
Fountain Valley, CA
Out of the four hospitals and thousands of staff comprising the OCLA Tenet Health Market, we are proud to recognize Santiago Chambers as the winner of the 2020 Tenet Heroes Hall of Fame award. He serves as Fountain Valley Regional’s Manager of Environment of Care and Hospital Safety Officer. Always professional and humble, Santiago goes above and beyond his duties regularly, but never seeks attention for his thoughtfulness and attention to delivering top-notch work and a caring touch. He is known as the rock the hospital can depend on; throughout 2020, he demonstrated his values in extraordinary ways. Santiago helped lead the Fountain Valley COVID-19 response in addition to his regular workload. From hospital incident command, to developing special protocols for care of the deceased, he regularly came in during off-hours to assist. His contributions make a big difference to the hospital, the community, and to the company. As a part-time minister, Santiago serves a higher power, and because of this, he delivers professionalism to our hospital, service to our patients, and compassion to his fellow man. He has made Fountain Valley Regional Hospital a better place and we are forever grateful to have him on our team.
Chrystal ClementMountain Empire Surgery Center
Johnson City, TN
Hired as a new nurse after completing her clinical rotation at the facility, Chrystal has developed into a remarkable team member, growing into a role that oversees the otolaryngology service line for the facility, including ordering supplies and instrumentation
for new physicians and procedures. As a member of the Be KIND Committee, Chrystal makes it a priority to celebrate at every opportunity, such as creating a bulletin board to highlight the generous acts of her peers as recognized by patients, regularly
providing holiday-themed treats for her teammates, and even keeping a locker full of surprise gifts for when someone’s spirits need lifting.
Additionally, Chrystal designed a program where pediatric patients receive themed treat boxes if they require surgery on a holiday. The children are so excited, they forget their fear, and parents are reassured and comforted by the gesture.
Kaitie Coleman, BSNSan Antonio Endoscopy Center
San Antonio, TX
As a Circulation and Recovery Nurse at San Antonio Endoscopy Center, Kaitie is someone who steps up to challenges. Kaitie has felt an even greater need to care for patients during the pandemic. Her compassionate, warm, and innovative spirit earned her the title of Patient Experience Champion for the facility. From reassuring a patient that he/she is safe upon waking up from surgery, to implementing “Care Cards” to foster a positive experience and hosting daily huddles to celebrate patient comments and discuss opportunities, Kaitie upholds the pillars of USPI’s Mission and Be KIND culture. The Administrator at her facility noted, “[Our patients] leave the facility feeling renewed simply by being in her presence and having the honor of being exposed to her awesome attitude!”
Art Dominguez Jr., RN
Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center
San Luis Obispo, CA
Carlye GilbertCoastal Carolina Hospital
Carlye is the Market Infection Preventionist for Hilton Head Regional Healthcare. As someone who is known for her can-do attitude and tireless work ethic, Carlye has become a trusted resource for her colleagues and community. Carlye’s tenacity and zeal for knowledge serve her well in the Infection Preventionist role. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Carlye has committed herself to avid research and continued education. She has been a driving force in the development of COVID-19 screening, testing and tracing protocols. Coastal Carolina Hospital has been a multi-time recipient of numerous Zero Harm Awards from the South Carolina Hospital Association, thanks in large part to Carlye’s attention to detail when developing, leading and executing processes to prevent hospital-acquired infections.
Wendi Henning, MSW, LMSW, OSW-CDMC Children’s Hospital of Michigan
As a Clinical Social Worker, Wendi is a shining example of a true hero, providing hope and optimism for pediatric cancer patients even during the COVID-19 pandemic. Described as “remarkably cheerful and upbeat“, Wendi has organized and executed the Annual Celebration of Life for more than ten years, a premier hospital-based social event uniting 2,000 childhood cancer survivors, current cancer patients, and their families for a daylong extravaganza. She spends hundreds of hours of her own time planning. For 2020, she not only reimagined the Annual Celebration of Life event to be a virtual experience, she also reimagined the bell ringing ceremonies for pediatric cancer survivors. Wendi ensured children who have spent years fighting cancer were able to ring the bell safely, surrounded by family and their care team
Turlock Imaging Services
Relatively new in her leadership role, Andi knows what it means to be a patient advocate as demonstrated by a recent experience. During a routine patient ultrasound, Andi recognized what appeared to be an abdominal aortic aneurysm. Following the visit, the patient’s physician called and advised an immediate trip to the emergency room where the patient underwent emergency surgery to have a stent placed and fix a massive 6.7 cm aneurysm. The patient recovered well, and both he and his family are grateful for the thorough work performed by Andi and the quick action by the team.
Andi’s dedication to her role, compassion towards the patient and family, and quick response to provide life-saving care contribute to her designation as a Tenet Hero.
Kate Kiel, RNEast Cooper Medical Center
Mount Pleasant, SC
Kate is a Registered Nurse in the Infusion Department at East Cooper Medical Center. As someone who is known for her gentle and compassionate demeanor, she has been a beacon of light for her patients and their families for more than 35 years. Her warm and caring spirit led her to receive a Daisy Award for Extraordinary Nurses. One recent patient’s daughter penned, “When I would make appointments for my dad’s transfusion, he would tell me he wanted ‘his Kate’. He trusted her so much. Kate treated him with so much respect. They chatted and developed a friendship that meant so much to him. There are very few Kate Kiels in this world and my Dad was lucky to have her in his life during his last living months. Kate will be in my heart and my Dad’s forever!”
Julie Kinsch, RNSan Ramon Regional Medical Center
San Ramon, CA
Julie is the Director of Infection Prevention and Control at San Ramon Regional Medical Center. She helped coordinate the hospitalization of one of the first possible COVID-19 patients in the state and continues to collaborate with public health and other agencies to ensure the hospital is always following the latest guidelines. Julie has a level of stamina and resilience that is commendable as she works continuous days, nights, evenings and weekends to ensure patients and staff are safe. She has shown nothing but passion, dedication and care for her patients and colleagues. One administrator at her hospital noted, “Never once has Julie complained and she greets every challenge with a smile and can-do attitude.”
Jesus “Ramiro” LopezThe Hospitals of Providence East Campus
El Paso, TX
Ramiro is an incredible nurse who makes a lasting and positive impression with every patient he encounters. Each day he shows an unwavering commitment to care for every patient as though it was his own family member. Even during the challenges of COVID, his dedication has been extraordinary despite the life and death moments he has encountered. Through his compassion he has left a lasting impact on his patients earning him the DAISY Award for excellence in nursing. One family member who lost a loved one to COVID wrote, ”The kindness Ramiro showed to our family cannot be measured. No matter how busy he may have been, it seemed as if we were the only family with a loved one in his unit and in his care – Thank you.”
Paul Luna, BCCValley Baptist Medical Center - Brownsville
As Pastoral Services Supervisor, Paul has provided affirmation, inspiration and companionship to our patients, their families and our employees throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. When a staff nurse became ill, he provided support for the nurse as well as the colleagues caring for him. The patient/nurse eventually passed away. Through it all, Paul provided care to the team, the patient, and his family, even organizing and leading a memorial service for the nurse. He has also held a virtual memorial service for patients who experienced pregnancy loss during this year and has facilitated a "tea for the soul" pastoral services cart. With his compassion and heart for people, Paul touches many lives in his work at the hospital, supporting and serving our employees and those who have lost loved ones.
Crystal MooreAbrazo Central Campus
As an Emergency Department Tech at Abrazo Central Campus, a full-time student, and single parent, Crystal still finds time to pitch-in and work extra shifts. She developed video training and trained other ED techs and nurses on proper technique for drawing blood cultures, and has cross-trained in HUC duties handling more than 300 calls per shift. Crystal’s energetic personality keeps staff spirits and morale high leading community drives and morale boosting activities. Examples include organizing hot chocolate bars, specialty meals for night shift and a bowling night for ED staff. Each quarter she helps organize charity donations such as programs for children experiencing grief, a women and children’s shelter, a back-to-school supplies drive and Christmas angels. Caring for patients and families as well, she developed sympathy cards to send to families who lost a loved one in the hospital ED.
Delia Morrissette and Andreana MartinezMetro Surgery Center
Delia, Front Desk Clerk, and Andreana, Insurance Verifier, were nominated together because “that is how they function, as a team.” When team members at their facility were furloughed as a result of the pandemic, these two took on additional
roles and trained quickly on new functions without skipping a beat to ensure each patient was treated with compassion and felt completely informed on the facility’s new safety processes. Delia and Andreana conducted the proper insurance verifications,
then reached out to patients to work through financial plans for covering their service. Additionally, they coordinated with their local leadership team to implement a robust COVID testing plan.
In one of the hardest healthcare environments, these two were repeatedly recognized by patients, including one receiving nine comments in a single month. As noted by one patient, these two colleagues are “VERY busy and dedicated front office staff, and incredibly professional. Handling COVID precautions very well. They deserve special recognition for all that has been asked of them, and new shoes, as they are constantly on the go!”
Wendy Ochs, RNShelby Baptist Medical Center
Cardiac rehab manager, Wendy Ochs, has always accepted additional responsibilities for improving patient outcomes, so it came as no surprise when the pandemic began that she took on the role of “PPE Czar,” as she was lovingly called by her coworkers. For months, Wendy’s days started before sunrise and lasted well into the evening, rounding and distributing PPE while also coaching, consoling, mentoring, listening and correcting staff – all with a smile under her mask! From helping to onboard the new materials director and materials manager – both of whom joined Shelby in the midst of the pandemic – to spending countless hours helping count, sort and store supplies, as well as searching for supplies from non-traditional suppliers and even leading teams to help create innovative PPE allocation initiatives, Wendy was steadfast. Her dedication and work in PPE management was key to keeping staff safe, especially during times when the supply chain was significantly challenged, and as a result of her efforts, the Shelby team was able to better serve its patients and community.
Danay Rodriguez-ArritolaHialeah Hospital
Danay is the Director of Emergency Services at Hialeah Hospital. As someone who never hesitates to step up to a challenge, she has been a critical member of the team during the pandemic. The Covid-19 surge in the Hialeah Community stressed the entire community. With the first indications of the virus moving in the area Danay led the emergency management team to prepare for its unknown impact. Danay has great relationships and she collaborated with local EMS on best practices to ensure patients were taken care of properly. Everyone that knows Danay knows she is a great leader, good friend and most of all that nursing is her passion.
Wanda ReynoldsSaint Vincent Hospital
Wanda has been a therapist at SVH since 1992. Throughout COVID, her commitment to the Respiratory profession, department and to her patients has been extraordinary. As the first healthcare worker to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at SVH, she said, “I feel fantastic, proud, excited.” Wanda is an exceptional therapist and resource within the ICU and patient care areas and has been during her 29 years of service. She is known for bringing an energy of caring and support, and she is joined by so many wonderfully gifted and talented Respiratory Therapists on staff at the hospital.
Kisha TaylorBaylor Scott & White Medical Center - Sunnyvale
A true servant leader, Kisha is not one to stand around and watch. Kisha leaned into new responsibilities and challenges during the pandemic. She was quick to understand the complexities of caring for COVID-19 patients, designing a drive-up ED tent for
the hospital to allow patients to stay in their cars and avoid the potential spread of the virus. Kisha trained staff members on the proper ways to don and doff personal protective equipment and didn’t hesitate to step in as a triage nurse herself
Kisha’s commitment to excellence in care extends beyond the facility’s walls and into the community as she designed an Emergency Services Nurse Graduate Program to facilitate developing new team members onsite, contributing to a “grow our own” culture. A compassionate leader, Kisha also organized a food drive to benefit families without jobs because of COVID-19.
Rebecca Washam, RNGood Samaritan Medical Center
West Palm Beach, FL
Besides bringing in items of clothing for homeless patients and arranging for their personal needs outside the facility, Rebecca chaired the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Light the Night event for 2020. Even though raising money for this year’s fundraiser could only be held virtually, Rebecca worked tirelessly to host occasions, spread the word, and create snack carts that fed our working peers over several weeks. She even enlisted the help of family and friends to make masks that were sold to raise additional money. Rebecca took on this challenge and dedicated her time, talents and personal commitment to this cause, even when the possibility of raising funds looked bleak during a pandemic. She is a true hero and a role model to Tenet Health, Good Samaritan Medical Center, and our entire community.
Susan Ybarra, RNDoctors Medical Center
Susan is a shift manager on the Neuro Critical Care Unit (NCCU) at Doctors Medical Center and has worked on the unit for more than 20 years. Susan is described by her colleagues as very compassionate, and someone who has a positive outlook, very high standards and morals, and always wants to give back to her patients. Susan partnered with Donor Network West to bring organ recipients on site to help educate the NCCU and Emergency Department teams. She also introduced Honor Walks at Doctors Medical Center to honor organ donors and provide closure for their loved ones and their care teams. Susan works tirelessly to provide support and education for families regarding organ donation. When discussing organ donation, Susan says, “It’s a gift. These people are heroes.”