As Gordon Hospital celebrated National Nurses’ Week May 6-12, three employees were recognized for their service.
Kendrick (at left) accepts the H.E.A.R.T. of Nursing Award from Amy Jordon, Chief Nursing Officer.
Darlene Kendrick, RN, an 11 year veteran of Gordon Hospital, was named the 2007 H.E.A.R.T. of Nursing Award winner. The H.E.A.R.T. acronym stands for helpfulness, enthusiasm, achievement and adaptability, responsibility and teamwork. Beyond fulfilling the meaning of this award, Kendrick’s peers say she is “the kind of nurse that we all strive to be.”
Kendrick found her mission early in life after witnessing her cousin give birth. “Birthing is absolutely a miracle from God,” she says. “I knew from that point forward that obstetric nursing was my calling.”
After earning her nursing degree from Dalton State College in 1999, she joined Gordon Hospital’s medical/surgical unit as a registered nurse, and soaked in many mentorships from experienced nurses. “I have learned to seize every moment as a learning opportunity, because one day someone may depend on me for the answer.”
After joining the New Beginnings Maternity Center she used her gift of compassion by empathizing with new families through their birthing experiences. “I’ve cried tears of joy, and shed tears of sadness,” she says. “Being able to take part in this crucial time in people’s lives is such a blessing to me.” Kendrick adds that her relationship with God through prayer gives her direction during the difficult times.
Continuing her professional growth, she will graduate from the University of West Georgia with her bachelor’s degree in nursing this December.
She adds, “Since juggling family, career, and education is tough, I reflect on Philippians 4:13 every day, which says: ‘I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.’
A Dalton native and graduate of Southeast Whitfield High School, she and husband Terry reside in Calhoun and have two girls, Brooke and Mary-Kathryn.
Additional H.E.A.R.T. of Nursing Award nominees were nurses Laura Hall, Pam Puckett, Melody West, Muntaha Yu, and Cindy Edwards.
This year’s Critical Care Nurse of the Year is not only a professional, seasoned nurse; she is a role model and mentor to nursing students and new employees.
Jeana Handley, RN, of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), earned her nursing degree from Chattanooga State Technical Community College in Southeast Tennessee in 1998. She began her nursing career in the emergency center at Erlanger Baroness Campus in downtown Chattanooga.
In 2001, her path led to Calhoun, Ga., as her husband Devin Handley, MD, joined OWASA Family Medicine. Shortly after joining the ranks of the medical/surgical and intensive care units, Handley appreciated the close-knit “family” environment.
While at Gordon, she honed in on her precepting skills, and learned how much she valued watching nurses grow professionally. With a “keep it real” attitude, Handley says she enjoys showing nurses new techniques and skills unique to Gordon Hospital’s ICU.
“I was a student once, and I took note of what I would’ve liked to have been shown early on, so I try to offer that to others,” she says. One piece of advice she gives her students is to always remember where you came from, so that you treat everyone with respect no matter who they are, or where they are in their nursing career.”
Handley’s fellow nurses say, “Jeana is a go-getter. She has a broad knowledge base, and if she doesn’t know something, she isn’t afraid to learn it, and take it on.”
During the recent electronic medical record training and implementation (iConnect), she helped her co-workers through the transition, often going “above and beyond” to lend a helping hand.
Upon receiving the award, she says, “It means a lot to me to know how my colleagues feel about my experience. It’s just an honor to even be thought of this way.”
Handley’s family keeps her busy beyond work hours. She and Dr. Handley have two little boys, six- year-old Gavin and four- year- old Conner. The Handleys have been married for nearly eight years and reside in Calhoun. They love spending time whitewater rafting, hiking, and enjoying time together.
According to his colleagues, this year’s D.O.V.E. Leadership Award recipient, George Seddon, Pharm. D., Director of Pharmacy, personifies this recognition. D.O.V.E. stands for Dedicated, Open Minded, Value Driven, and Encouraging.
“Many people are impacted by George on a daily basis,” says one co-worker. “He makes everyone feel as if they are the most important issue that he has at the moment.” Another employee adds, “George really appears to live his values. He takes real interest in employees throughout the hospital and cares about their spirituality.”
A 22-year employee of Gordon Hospital, George says he is “humbled, but honored” by this recognition, and adds that it is a pleasure to work with friends that are more like family. He adds that it is easy for him to live out his mission in the workplace everyday, because Gordon Hospital encourages mission-driven service. Beyond employees benefiting from his care, hospital patients feel the impact. “Working in a hospital of this size gives me an added sense of satisfaction, because I know that I’m caring for my neighbors; and I can make a difference when tailoring a drug therapy just for them.”
Seddon receives inspiration from his personal relationship with God and his membership at the East Calhoun Church of God. He and wife of 28 years, LaVonda, have two children, Megan and George III.
Additional nominees for the D.O.V.E. Leadership Award were Stephanie Jones, Justina Carrick, Kim Smith, Alan Holcomb, and Bud Owens.
Gordon Hospital would like to thank the following businesses that generously donated to the Nurses’ Week celebration: Allied Staffing, Allure, Apria Healthcare, Arbonne (Carmen Green), Barnsley Gardens, Biddy Boutique, Body & Soul Healing Therapy, Calhoun Medical & Therapeutic Massage, Classic Furniture, Cup-a-Dee-Cakes, Darrin Hudgins Car Detail, Donna's Hallmark, Dr. Ledford Chiropractic, Dub's High On The Hog Bar-B-Cue, DWI Holdings, Firehouse Gym, Gordon Hospital Gift Shop, Gordon Hospital Rehabilitation Services (Tom Peters and Emily Haddox), Gourmet Day Café, Jack's Movies & More, Joann Nails, Jonesie's, Keene's, Keith's Photography, LaParisienne Uniform Shop, Magnolia Medical Spa, Martha Clance, Medical Staffing Network, Merle Norman, Pampered Chef (Diane Clayton), Prime Outlet mall, Reese's, T.J.'s Office Supply, Tami's Flower Cottage, T-Nails, Too Tall Pauls, Tot Roost, Tulip Tree, United Hospice, Valerie’s and Wall Street Trading Co. (David Burton).