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Recipient of 2009 President’s Award a strong leader who inspires others through hard work, dedication to nursing

Posted Mar 10th, 2010

NIAGARA, Ontario:  She is a strong leader whose approach and style foster strong and successful relationships and whose hard work and dedication to nursing are an inspiration to others.

The recipient of the 2009 Niagara Health System (NHS) President’s Award is Donna Rothwell. The St. Catharines resident is the Chief Nursing and Professional Practice Officer at Niagara Health and Health Program Director responsible for the regional Maternal Child Program and the Welland Site.

Donna’s overall contributions to the NHS were officially recognized Tuesday at a special awards of excellence celebration organized by Niagara Health for staff, physicians and volunteers.

“Donna’s accomplishments speak for themselves. She is an inspiring leader with a special talent for building strong and vibrant relationships within the hospital and with external partners,” says President and CEO Debbie Sevenpifer. “She is down to earth and approachable, and she shows care, compassion and respect to all, which is evident when she interacts with patients, her colleagues and the public. The vision of nursing at the hospital has been developed and nurtured under Donna’s guidance and leadership, and it reflects her tireless commitment to nursing and quality patient care. She is well deserving of the 2009 President’s Award.”

Donna spent the majority of her hand’s-on nursing career in the area of maternal child care. She was a popular prenatal nurse instructor for many years, teaching soon-to-be parents about changing diapers and feeding their babies, among other important parenting skills. Donna has evolved her nursing skills to become a thoughtful and caring leader. She is sought after across the province to share her knowledge in the fields of nursing and interprofessional practice, in which healthcare professionals of all disciplines learn and work together. 

In addition to her work at Niagara Health, Donna is completing her Master’s degree in Nursing. She also teaches nursing students at Niagara College.

Six additional awards were presented to NHS employees who were nominated by their peers for demonstrating exceptional behaviours related to the NHS’s Success Factors or Core Values.

Recipients are:

  • Focus on those we serve: Linda Kisch, Ward Clerk, Emergency Department, Welland Site.   
  • Bring out the best in each other:  Betty Boutilier, Site Coordinator, Materials Management at Niagara Falls, Welland, Port Colborne and Douglas Memorial sites.
  • Build strong and successful relationships: Carol Henderson, Ward Clerk, Emergency Department, Welland Site.
  • Create a better way: Andy Naundorf, Business Systems Analyst, Information and Communications Technology, all sites.
  • Use our resources wisely: Team award: Sue Gerbes (Community Care Access Centre) and from NHS Jane Karner, Case Manager; Sharron Steward, Ward Clerk, Medical Unit; Jillian Tweedy, Occupational Therapist; and Christena Watterson, Charge Nurse, all St. Catharines General Site.
  • Compassion, Professionalism and Respect: Rev. Bob Bond, Coordinator, Spiritual Care, Welland Site.

A more detailed description of the contributions by the award winners is attached, along with a listing of the previous winners of the President’s Award.

The Awards of Excellence program was introduced in 2005 as part of a comprehensive new award and recognition program that allows the NHS to recognize the many contributions of staff, volunteers and physicians. These awards are presented annually to individuals or teams whose actions resulted in a significant contribution to the organization.

“The nominations are a great source of pride for the NHS,” said Rachel Bayley, Consultant, Organizational Development. “It is significant for nominees to have their actions recognized and acknowledged. The nominations are a terrific reflection of the outstanding contributions made by those working in our hospital system to ensure patients receive the best possible care.”

For more information, contact:
Caroline Bourque Wiley
Public Affairs Consultant
905-378-4647, ext. 43113

Niagara Health System