WALSENBURG — On Friday, March 1, 2016, Regina Griego, NP and Marcella Smith, RN were awarded as Nightingale Luminaries during a ceremony held by Southeastern Colorado Area Health Education Center. Only 2 individuals in southeastern Colorado, which encompasses Huerfano, Pueblo, Las Animas, Otero, Prowers, Teller, Baca, Bent, Kiowa, Cheyenne, Lake, Park, Chaffee, Fremont, Custer and Crowley counties, are recognized each year for this distinction.
“To have two of nurses in one year recognized out of all the outstanding nurses regionally, is a great honor for them and our organization,” said Marty Schlink, nursing home administrator.
Regina Griego, NP started her career through the CNA training program at SPRHC in 1994. She went on to obtain her LPN in 2004, her RN in 2005, and finally her NP in 2010. Through this journey, she came to realize how important it is for students to have positive support from experienced nurses. When she was hired as a Nurse Practitioner at SPRHC, she started a program designed for just that on a one-on-one basis. Regina is a dedicated individual who cares about her community, nursing students, and improving the lives she touches.
Marcella Smith, RN joined SPRHC two years ago as Staffing Coordinator. After being here only a short time, she felt a culture of support and guidance would improve the lives of employees and create a better work environment. She created a mentor program specifically designed to help new employees. Marcella another opportunity to help not only the facility in its hiring, but also the community. Through much hard work, she was able to get grant funding for a CNA training program. Marcella is a caring person who works hard to solve the needs she sees for her employees and her community, truly working to improve the lives she touches.
The Nightingale Awards event was founded in 1985 to honor nurses who best exemplify the philosophy and practice of Florence Nightingale, a 19th century nursing pioneer who epitomized the art of helping people toward their optimal health. Registered Nurses throughout the state are nominated by solicitation from the Colorado Area Health Education Centers system (AHEC), the Colorado Springs Nightingale and Nightingale Western Colorado in the fall of each year. Each region hosts a local event for nominees. Finalists (Luminaries) are selected by the regions and the State Selection Committee then determines the recipients of the Nightingale Award. The announcement of the recipients at the Nightingale Luminary Awards event is a highlight of the evening. Recipients receive a commemorative Nightingale bronze sculpture crafted by Colorado artist Jan Searle-Kubby.