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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 13, 2017

CONTACT
Leah Bucco-White, Communications and Legislative Services, 402-471-9356
leah.bucco-white@nebraska.gov

Nurses Making a Difference Awards Announced

Note: Photos of the nurses receiving their awards are available here:    http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/NursesMakingADifferenceAwards.aspx

Lincoln – The Nebraska Center for Nursing honored five Nebraska nurses for making a difference through contributions to health care and their communities. The honorees were selected based on criteria that includes active involvement in activities that advance the nursing profession, like volunteer work, as well as activities that enhance the health and well-being of the community.

Meet this year’s honorees:

Susan Friedrichsen RN, Palmer - Susan works as a staff nurse at Howard County Medical Center in Central City. In her 23 years of employment, Susan has worked in all areas of the hospital, including receiving specialized training in obstetrics and wound care to support those unique services offered in this critical access hospital. She has advanced nursing in this critical access hospital through the skill and compassion she demonstrates in her daily work and in her community.  She serves as a mentor to co-workers and also is an active member of Palmer Fire and Rescue.  She regularly volunteers at the Palmer Senior Center.
 
Nancy Haberstich RN, Lincoln - Nancy has been a registered nurse for 46 years and has been working in infection prevention/control for over 35 years. Nancy also served as a clinical specialist for a medical products company for four years, consulting with hospitals in 14 states to reduce catheter-acquired urinary tract infections.  Nancy has volunteered as a nurse in Liberia, West Africa, consulted with the Canadian Ministry of Health on the SARS epidemic, and created and coordinated a 78-hour training course in Japan for nurses in infection prevention.  Nancy has also operated her own business, Nanobugs, to teach practical microbiology and infection prevention to people of all ages.
 
Heather Hardesty RN, Lincoln - Heather is an emergency nurse at Nebraska Medicine in Bellevue and a flight nurse for Midwest Med Air.  She has served in roles including Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner, flight nurse and certified emergency nurse.  Heather teaches advanced certification courses and mentors/precepts new peers. She volunteers each year as a bell ringer for the Salvation Army campaign and has been active in the Nebraska Emergency Nurses Association. Heather is a compassionate nurse, embracing diversity and individuals from all walks of life. 
 
Mark Harvey APRN-NP, Grand Island - Mark’s nursing background includes critical care, faculty member and primary care nurse practitioner. He is currently pursuing his Doctor of Nursing Practice with a psychiatric specialization to provide services as a psychiatric Nurse Practitioner.  Mark has been involved in the Nebraska Nurse Practitioners organization, his local church, and at a local no-kill animal shelter in Hastings. Mark received the Duke Johnson & Johnson Nurse Leadership Fellowship for nurse practitioners working with the underserved and is a regular volunteer at Third City Clinic in Grand Island for low income and uninsured individuals and families. 
 
Ashley Kennedy RN, Lincoln - Ashley is currently a faculty member at Bryan College of Health Sciences.  She has served in many nursing roles including staff nurse, charge nurse and nurse educator and is currently certified as a medical-surgical nurse.  Ashley serves as a significant advocate for nursing preceptorship.  She is passionate about mentoring new nurses to the profession and facilitating their success by assuring the preparedness of their preceptors.  She has created and implemented a blueprint guide for nursing preceptors in acute care, which is used across the organization.  This blueprint led to the development of a preceptor webpage which serves as a resource to staff nurses who precept nursing students.  This webpage also connects the faculty and nurse preceptor regarding student progress.  Ashley is an active volunteer in the Special Olympics, Bryan Health’s Run to Overcome, Boo at the Zoo, Bryan Health Indoor Triathalon, Kloefkorn Elementary and the Lincoln Marathon.
 
The Nebraska Center for Nursing was established by the Nebraska Legislature in 2000 to address issues of supply and demand for nurses. In addition to being the primary source of nursing workforce data, the Center fulfills its legislative mandate by creating recognition and reward activities and by promoting media and positive image-building efforts on behalf of the nursing profession. The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services provides administrative support to the Center’s nursing board. For more information visit www.center4nursing.nebraska.gov .     

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