New alumni awards increase awareness and diverse accomplishments

Dean Linda Norman and Annie Moon, who received the first Alma Gault Alumni Award for Public Service. Photo by Steve Green.

The School of Nursing Alumni Association recognized eight alumni and friends of the school with its Distinguished Alumni Awards during Reunion 2018. Honorees were nominated by fellow alumni and colleagues and selected by the association’s board of directors.

The awards this year included new categories and honors. The expanded categories allowed the association to recognize alumni at varying stages of their careers and in different areas of impact from academics to public service to clinical excellence and support of the School of Nursing. This year’s award categories and winners were:

Lulu Wolf Hassenplug Alumni Award for Distinguished Career in Nursing: Randolph Rasch, MSN’79, dean of Michigan State University College of Nursing.

Alumni Award for National Leadership: Jessica Van Meter, DNP’15, MSN’07, Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Alma Gault Alumni Award for Public Service: Annie Moon, MSN’03, Indian Health Services’ Chinle Service Unit, Chinle, Arizona.

Alumni Award for Clinical Achievement in Nursing: Jennifer Parker Kurkowski, MSN’09, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston.

Catherine Hanley Class of 1912 Rising Star Alumni Award: Jordan Plaxico, MSN’16, BA’14, Clinic at Mercury Courts, Nashville.

Alumni Award for Innovation in Health Care: Anna-Gene Chalfant O’Neal, MSN’92, MBA’92, BSN’88, CEO, Alive Hospice, Nashville.

Friend of Nursing Award: C. Wright Pinson, MBA, MD’80, Deputy CEO and Chief Health Systems Officer, Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Honorary Alumna Award: Marty Sutherland, VUSN faculty practices, Nashville.