2009 - Alumni Award Recipients
The alumni award for Excellence in Nursing is presented annually to a graduate of the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing who is a national or international leader in nursing issues.
Donna Herrin is the vice president for Patient Services for Methodist Health Systems. However, her concern about quality, safety and the role of nurses today and in the future does not end within the walls of her organization. When the practice and academic nurse executives in her community were challenged as a group to address nursing workforce issues, Donna was the first and loudest to respond to this challenge. She was persistent in her efforts to drive the group forward and was the force that made the difference in creation of the Nursing Institute of the MidSouth. This 501(c)(3) is now a reality and is working to bring together nursing practice and academic leaders to help address nursing workforce issues facing the Shelby County area.
Although Donna has impacted nursing practice through many roles within the American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE), her greatest contribution is perhaps yet to come. This year Donna assumed the presidency of this organization, which puts her in the national spotlight as one of the nation’s most influential nurse leaders.
She is devoted to promoting nursing and improving health, and will assume whatever role needed to accomplish that goal— whether it is being in the spotlight herself or stepping aside for others to take the lead role.
Donna is widely published in numerous peer-reviewed journals, and she serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Nursing Administration. She is a clinical associate professor at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and holds faculty positions at the University of Memphis and the University of Tennessee Center for Health Sciences. She is currently a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives and certified as a Nursing Administrator, Advanced by the American Nurses Credentialing Center.
The alumni award for Clinical Achievement in Nursing is presented to a graduate of the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing for proficiency in clinical, patient-centered practice.
Obstetrician/Gynecologist Phil Bressman, MD, said, “For 27 years, Sara Hampshire and I have worked closely together…and have seen our strengths and skills mesh so closely that, for the past four years, we have worked together exclusively in collaborative practice. I am truly fortunate to have her as a colleague and as a dear friend.” Sara has had numerous testaments to her exceptional clinical skills and to relationships she has forged with her patients. One of the most impressive is that women who came to her in the early years of her practice continue to come for their own care—and now bring their daughters.
Sara is a determined and unwavering advocate for the well-being of her own patients, as well as for many groups of people who are not—particularly the marginalized and underserved in her community and far beyond. She currently volunteers with Siloam Clinic and anticipates future opportunities to assist and mentor young children with their reading skills.
Throughout her career she has maintained the reputation and the reality of being the consummate professional, yet has managed to nurture her marriage to Peter Hampshire, MD, and to raise two children, Kate Hampshire Hensley, MD, a pediatric resident in Greenville, North Carolina, and a son, Christopher Hampshire, an officer in the Vanderbilt University Police Department. In addition to consistently demonstrating excellence in clinical achievements and patient care, Sara has served as a model for peers and patients with her ability to balance work, life, family and fun.
The President’s Award of Distinction is presented to graduates of the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing who are recognized for distinguished contributions to nursing and to their communities.
Since 2003, Sheila Ridner, PhD, has become one of the premier voices in Lymphedema research and treatment. She is a voice for many women suffering from a condition about which very little was known. Sheila has given presentations on Lymphedema at the Annual Oncology Nursing Congress, the First International Lymphedema Network Patient Summit and the National League for Nurses International Conference on Lymphedema. She has spoken at the Ellis Fischel Cancer Center, Hardin Memorial Hospital Rehabilitation Center and at various YMCAs for their After Breast Cancer Programs. Sheila has also made her Lymphedema research available through numerous peer-reviewed articles in Oncology Nursing Forum, Journal of Advanced Nursing Research, Supportive Care in Cancer and various other publications.
In 2004-2005, Sheila received a Postdoctoral Oncology Nursing Fellowship from Vanderbilt University. She was a member of the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center pain and symptom management research team and the Vanderbilt University Medical Center Behavioral Institutional Review Board.
In addition to receiving her MSN and PhD from Vanderbilt University, Sheila also earned a Master of Health Services Administration from the College of St. Francis Graduate School.
Sheila has also shown a desire to continue improving her research. She has currently brought in more than $500,000 to fund Lymphedema research. As a nurse and Vanderbilt University School of Nursing alumnus, she has accomplished more for Lymphedema research and treatment than could possibly have been imagined 10 years ago.
Friend of Nursing
James (Jim) Carell
For over 40 years Jim Carell has looked ahead to health care needs and provided options to meet them. Carell is a long time supporter of the Vanderbilt School of Nursing. His daughter graduated from the School of Nursing in 2005 as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner. In that same year, he and his wife Jan established the James and Janet Carell/Tina Marie McIntosh MSN, CPNP Scholarship for Nurses to benefit nursing students demonstrating merit and financial need. During recent renovations, nursing students needed a building in which to hold classes, and Carell generously provided one of his own buildings for the students.
From his leadership as general agent of a Mutual of Omaha agency to his founding of CareAll (a home health-care agency primarily for seniors) in 1985, Carell has insisted that his associates understand their patient-client needs and tailor a solution to overcome them.
“Patients and their families need to know there are options, and our job is to provide the option that best meets their individual needs,” said Carell.
He realizes that usually patients can have a higher quality of life in familiar comfortable surroundings, but family members just can’t “go it alone.” CareAll provides resources and support needed to maintain independence and a higher quality of life in patients homes than they might have otherwise.
As he faced serious illnesses within his own family, his passion increased about providing this help to family members. Today, CareAll’s patients range from infants to seniors, and their services include skilled nursing care, physical therapy and companionship. The agency is located in 61 counties throughout Tennessee.
His colleagues, associates and administrators agree that Carell insists that “Good enough health care” is not “good enough,” and that all CareAll employees must provide high-quality value to chronically ill patients and their families. He says, “There is no excuse for idleness or poor quality work.”
Carell believes that if employees are recognized for their good work, they in turn will deliver high quality care for their patients, and profit becomes a by-product. A long-time CareAll administrator says, “We were always expected to be accountable, and then we were recognized for our patient care.”
The Honorary Alumnus is awarded from time to time by the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing Alumni Association in recognition of significant contributions to the nursing school by an individual whose academic credentials were obtained elsewhere.
Trish Frist is a community volunteer. She has served on the boards of the Nashville Community Foundation, YWCA, Harpeth Hall, Ensworth School and Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC). Trish is a partner at Frist Capital and also serves as president at Frisco, Inc. She is president of the Patricia C. Frist and Thomas F. Frist Jr. Foundation. She has been an independent director of SunTrust Banks Inc. since 2000.
The School of Nursing has 25,000 square feet of additional space for student education and faculty research thanks to the generosity of the Frist family, who invested their resources in the Patricia Champion Frist Hall. Frist Hall includes a student lounge, an 80-seat, multi-media classroom, two multi-purpose rooms and an additional 30-seat classroom. The building also includes 35 faculty offices plus workrooms, secretarial space and three conference rooms. In 2005, the state-of-the-art Frist Nursing Informatics Center opened on the second floor of the building. It is home to an electronic classroom and testing lab, computer rooms and classrooms housing some of the latest in instructional technology.
The Frist family has been instrumental in adding to the cultural and educational opportunities available in Nashville. The Frist Center for the Visual Arts remains a major cultural center of our city, Middle Tennessee, and increasingly, the Southeast. The Frist family has made high-quality art accessible to all Nashvillians.
Trish once said, “Ever since I can remember, my husband would always say that he wanted to help make the world a better place, and it’s funny, but I feel that he really has done that.”
The School of Nursing also gratefully acknowledges Trish in her contribution to making the world a better place by enhancing the facilities to educate nurses who will touch thousands of lives around the world.