I put myself through nursing school in North Carolina as a single mother of four young children ages; 5, 5, 7 and 9. It was a long, uphill climb, but between the five of us we made it. After graduating from my Associates Degree Nurse (ADN) program I moved the family approximately 1000 miles south to Florida, where I attended Florida Atlantic University and graduated Magna Cum Laude with my bachelor’s degree in Nursing. It was in Florida that I fell in love and married a wonderful man that made my life and my family complete. I started my nursing career in West Palm Beach, Florida as an agency nurse, with the majority of my hours in critical care.
We then moved to Naples on the Gulf Coast of Florida and I continued as an agency nurse completing many contracts at local hospitals until becoming a House Supervisor at Lehigh Regional hospital. My family endured far too many hurricanes which prompted us to move to Arizona in 2006. Mayo Clinic Hospital moved us from Florida to Arizona. After working with several local hospitals in the private sector, I came to Indian Health Services, Phoenix Indian Medical Center (PIMC) in 2014 to work in the Intensive Care Unit.
During my tenure at PIMC, I have represented the ICU on the Council of Nurses for 2 years and have continued as a member at large once my representation for the ICU ended. I was also elected Chairperson for the ICU’s Unit Practice Council (UPC) and I continued in that position until such time that the meetings were changed to early afternoon making it impossible for a night shift worker to attend. Since stepping down from my position as Chairperson, I have continued as a member at large working on specific UPC sponsored unit improvement projects as well as working closely with J, the ICU SCN in updating the crash carts for the entire hospital. I was previously a DAISY Honoree having been nominated by a patient of mine. I was again nominated by another patient, and received my second DAISY Award in September of 2017.
I really enjoy taking care of the patient population here at PIMC, because unlike the private sector patients, my patients here are truly appreciative of the care they receive. Their appreciation for what I do makes all the difference in the world to me.