SILVER SPRING, MD—The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) today announced the recipients of the 2023 Pathway Nurse of the Year Award™. The winners were presented at the 2023 co-located ANCC National Magnet Conference® and the ANCC Pathway to Excellence Conference® in Chicago.
The awards recognize the outstanding contributions of one nurse leader and one direct care nurse from all Pathway to Excellence®-designated organizations around the world. Winners have made a positive impact on their practice environment by role modeling exceptional professionalism and leadership in working collaboratively with team members and integrating clinical expertise with compassionate patient interactions. They successfully found creative ways to foster engagement, nursing excellence, and shared decision making. ANCC is sincerely grateful to Nucleus Healthcare for sponsoring the Pathway Nurse of the Year Awards.
Pathway Nurse of the Year, Nurse Leader: Rebekah Mitchell, BSN, RN, Clinical Nurse Manager at CarolinaEast Medical Center
Rebekah is an outstanding nurse leader with consistently high performing units ensuring the best care delivery to the patients she and her nurses serve. She diligently worked her way through the ranks of CarolinaEast Medical Center serving as a staff nurse, clinical coordinator, associate manager and now a clinical nurse manager. Rebekah earned her position as a trusted nurse manager who can think quickly on her feet and still make the best decisions for both patients, her colleagues, and the organization.
For this reason, Rebekah was selected to help lead the first COVID-19 unit during the pandemic and went on to open and operate multiple COVID units using her own nursing staff. Colleagues have referred to her leadership during this time as “exemplary” and “a true Pathway leader.” Rebekah made sure all nurse staff were adequately trained and supported from the uncertainty and unknowns of the early days of the pandemic to present. Rebekah also led the organization’s first end of-life care unit, ensuring staff have all the resources necessary to provide a peaceful and dignified end-of-life transition for the patients. Staff have praised her for always being ready to lend a helping hand regardless of the task at hand.
Rebekah was nominated by Rebecca Skinner, MSN, RN, PCCN-K, Pathway Program Director at CarolinaEast Medical Center, and endorsed by Jim Davis, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, Vice President of Nursing/Chief Nursing Officer at CarolinaEast Medical Center.
“She leads by example and empowers her staff,” said Davis. “Becky has taken on multiple responsibilities and projects and has continued to prove herself as a strong leader and an advocate for the profession of Nursing.”
Pathway Nurse of the Year, Direct Care Nurse: Holly Weaver, BSN, RNC-OB, Maternal Infant Navigator, Healthy Beginnings Program, and Pathway Program Director at Indiana University (IU) Health Jay Hospital, Portland, IN
Holly is a talented clinical nurse who serves as an inspirational role model to her fellow colleagues and trusted advocate for her patients. As the Maternal-Infant Navigator for IU Health, Holly provides quality prenatal care to local mothers in a community that has a high infant mortality rate. Her specialized team-based care, guided by her knowledge of social determinants of health and unique insights she has gained from individual relationships with her patients, provides for optimal treatment and improved outcomes.
Holly’s first-hand knowledge of her patients and the value she places on their care, led her to discover a dire need among her patients – food insecurity. This led her to utilize her connections within the local community to create a pilot program within IU Health designed to assess food insecurities and provide nutrition via a food pantry which she encourages her patients in need to access.
Holly’s leadership skills and aptitude for collaborating with her peers on this program led to the selection of Holly as the Pathway Program Director for IU Health. Colleagues have referred to her as “well-respected” and the perfect person to lead the hospital on its Pathway to Excellence journey. In this position Holly shined and took charge, establishing the creation of a Pathway Standard Leader Group, overseeing the creation of the official Pathway document, and encouraging her peers to participate in the Pathway nurse survey.
Holly was nominated by Julie Teeter, MSN, RN, Maternal Infant Outreach Manager Regional at IU Health Jay, and endorsed by Christina Schemenaur, MSN, RN, Vice President, Chief Operating Officer/Chief Nursing Officer at IU Health Jay.
“Holly is an amazing nurse, and she energizes her peers to be better, do better, and advance the practice of nursing at IU Health Jay,” said Schemenaur. “In my mind, there is no one more deserving of the Pathway to Excellence Nurse of the Year Award than Holly Weaver.”
About the American Nurses Credentialing Center
The mission of the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association, is to promote excellence in nursing and health care globally through credentialing programs. ANCC's internationally renowned credentialing programs certify and recognize individual nurses in specialty practice areas. ANCC recognizes health care organizations that promote nursing excellence and quality patient outcomes while providing safe, positive work environments. In addition, ANCC accredits health care organizations that provide and approve continuing nursing education and accredits transition-to-practice programs that prepare nurses for new practice roles. For more information about ANCC, visit us at nursingworld.org/ANCC and follow us on Twitter. ANCC is the only nurse credentialing organization to successfully achieve ISO 9001: 2015 certification.
About the Pathway to Excellence® Program
The Pathway to Excellence® Program recognizes health care and long-term care organizations for positive practice environments where nurses excel. To qualify, organizations meet Pathway Standards essential to an ideal nursing practice environment. Nurses trust that Pathway-designated organizations respect their contributions, support professional development, and nurture optimal work settings.