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Awards recognize dedication, commitment

Aug. 27, 2015, 10:08 AM

Credo Award and Five Pillar Leader Award winners were announced Wednesday at the Clinical Enterprise Leadership Assembly at Langford Auditorium. These Vanderbilt University Medical Center staff and faculty awards are bestowed on a quarterly basis.

Carol Eck, MBA, R.N., received the Five Pillar Leader Award. (photo by Joe Howell)

Carol Eck, MBA, R.N., administrative director of Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, received the Five Pillar Leader Award, given for leadership in service, quality, growth/finance, innovation and the promotion of staff and faculty satisfaction and commitment.

According to her nominating letter, “One of Carol’s greatest strengths is her breadth of knowledge and ability to communicate with people at all levels. It would not be uncommon for her to have a meeting with a manager about R.N. work flow for an hour, and then spend her next hour with senior executives discussing the vision of VICC across Middle Tennessee.”

Laura Lee Culwell received a Credo Award. (photo by Susan Urmy)

Another nominator cited her commitment and compassion.

“Carol is a resource to so very many people. If a Vanderbilt employee or loved one experiences a diagnosis of cancer, Carol is likely to be called. She has supported, informed, coached and been a compassionate advocate for so many who have a personal experience with the fear and confusion of a cancer diagnosis and therapy.”

Credo Awards honor staff and faculty who exemplify the VUMC Credo. The newest winners are: Laura Lee Culwell, manager of the Stem Cell Transplant/Hematology Clinic; Joseph Garafola, project manager for Vanderbilt Home Care; and Kaye Nickell, R.N., Vanderbilt Franklin Women’s Center at Williamson Medical Center.

Joseph Garafola received a Credo Award. (photo by Anne Rayner)

According to her nominating letter, Culwell excels at making sure patients’ needs are met.

“Laura never tells people ‘no.’ She always looks for alternative solutions, and in doing so makes everyone she serves — patients, families, nurses, doctors, case managers — her highest priority.

Garafola’s nominating letter cited his selflessness and compassion.

“Joe often uses his lunch break for others. This past year it was discovered that he had been going to a local restaurant to pick up a patient’s favorite meal and deliver it to her. This patient had no immediate family, but during her time with Home Care he found out she liked one special meal and he continued this selfless act until the patient died.”

Kaye Nickell, R.N., received a Credo Award. (photo by Susan Urmy)

Nickell was praised for her empathy and communication skills.

“Kaye conducts herself professionally and communicates effectively when dealing with difficult people. Weekly, she experiences complaints that require use of her ministry and acute care experiences to listen respectfully and, when appropriate, offer solutions. We consistently witness her letting negativity ‘roll off her back’ while managing a situation to ensure professional boundaries are not crossed.”

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