The Best of Nursing Awards, Winners Announced!

26 Min Read Published December 1, 2023
The Best of Nursing Awards, Winners Announced!

The "Best of Nursing" Awards (formerly ICON Awards) is a annual initiative to recognize and celebrate dedication and excellence in the nursing profession.

What makes the Best of Nursing Awards truly special is that all the nurses, nursing students, nursing companies, and brands are nominated by the nursing community - peers, classmates, professors, followers, and loved ones! This level of recognition speaks volumes to the amazing work these individuals do day in, and out, for the nursing profession. Best of Nursing Awards: Category Winners

  • Wali Khan, Nurse Leader of The Year
  • Melanie Van Sistine, Nurse Entrepreneur of The Year
  • Nurse Erica, Nurse Influencer of The Year
  • Amber Ghafer, Most Inspirational Nurse of The Year
  • Fabletics Scrubs, Nurse Brand of The Year
  • Debriefing the Front Lines, Nursing Organization of The Year
  • NuWest, Travel Nursing Agency of The Year


Nurse Brand

Fabletics Scrubs


  • Instagram: @weargales

  • Website

  • Gales® was founded with care and kindness to give back to our community of nurses.  When we discovered the high infection risk associated with non-protective footwear worn in hospitals, we crowd-sourced a solution.  With over 1,500 participating nurses, we launched the first footwear built to protect feet from contamination and keep nurses feeling comfortable and safe during long 12+ hour shifts (

  • Built with nurses, for nurses, Gales® has proudly given back to our community through charitable donations, giveaways, and partnerships.  A few highlights below:

    • Collaborated with Nurse Blake for the limited edition Nurse Blake x Gales® Pro Line with a portion of proceeds benefiting the Make-A-Wish Foundation helping children with critical illness (

    • Hosted the Nurse Impact Contest with Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Ped/Onc Nurses Day and launched a capsule collection with a portion of proceeds donated to supporting children's cancer research.

    • Gifted 2,000+ pairs of shoes to charities and nurse giveback efforts this year.

    • Co-sponsored Nurses Night at Fenway with this past May and provided nurses with free shoes.

    • Partnered with Spirit Airlines and IntelyCare to sponsor a boat cruise + nurse credentialing for over 300 nurses with complimentary footwear for every participant.

    • Created the first-ever healthcare-focused music video with real RN, Cindy Johnson, and original lyrics/choreography/styling by Gales® winning two Telly Awards  

    • 2x Fast Company Innovation by Design Award Honorees for Most Innovative Design Solutions on Small Business as well as Pandemic Response


Meet Clove: a brand that designs sneakers for healthcare. We began out of love for a real healthcare professional. Clove’s founder, Joe Ammon, was at his wife Tamara’s side as she navigated through her nursing career. After seeing how taxing — physically and mentally — healthcare can be, he collaborated with healthcare professionals  and innovative designers to create a shoe that prioritizes the needs of those who dedicate their lives to caring for others. 

$2M Dollars in Support

Since our launch in 2019, Clove has donated more than $2M in sneakers

Walk the Walk Before We Talk the Talk 

Clove Cares, our community program, is inspired by one mission: to support our healthcare community 365 days a year. Clove has donated more than $160k to charities dedicated to supporting healthcare professionals. Proud partners to date include IMPACT in Healthcare, National Black Nurses Association, Black Girl White Coat, Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Foundation, Philadelphia FIGHT, and IMPACT

Sneakers Sold in 50 States  

Clove has been sold in all 50 U.S. states since launching in 2019, debuted in Canada in 2021, and will be launching in the U.K. later this month

Award-winning Innovation 

Clove secured TIME’s Top 100 Best Inventions Winner: Comfy Kicks for Healthcare Workers (2021) and has been featured on The Today Show, The Drew Barrymore Show, and Good Morning America 

Our Digital Footprint 

Since launch Clove has garnered more than 30 million organic Instagram impressions (Instagram: 138 followers / TikTok: 68.2k followers). Plus, #ClubClove is the name of our social media community comprised of +350 social media influencers that span healthcare disciplines 

And jot this down… our name has a bar above the C, the medical shorthand for “with” to mean With Love, because you support them, we support you. 


  • Instagram: @officialflowly

  • Website

  • Flowly is a clinically proven platform, backed by the NIH, designed to target non-structural pain and it's comorbities: anxiety, depression, and disordered sleep. Healthcare professionals are among the most affected employees suffering from burnout and each of the above health concerns (among others). Flowly is a 12-week program that has been used to help both patients and healthcare professionals alike through biofeedback therapy they can do in their homes on their own schedule. We're nominating them for the tangible impact they've made on the mental health of nurses and patients, and the affordable, accessible community they've created, whether or not you have purchased their product or not.



Lumify's uNight Light 2.0 

  • Instagram: @adniapp

  • Website

  • The Lumify uNight Light 2.0 is a nurse-founded invention!! It's a wearable LED light that helps healthcare workers illuminate their workspace while decreasing patient disturbances, during the day & night. I love wearing the uNight Light during night shift so I can help my patient sleep.

MDF Instruments

Trusted Health

Nurse Entrepreneur

Melanie Van Sistine

  • Instagram: @mels.crafty.corner 

  • TikTok: @mels.crafty.corner 

  • Website: Mel's Crafty Corner

  • It is with profound admiration and gratitude that I wholeheartedly nominate Melanie Van Sistine from Mels Crafty Corner for the prestigious Best Nursing Award. I have watched Melanie on her platform for almost 3 years now and I can honestly say there is no one like her. Her story is so profound and will easily make anyone inspired. 

Melanie's story is a poignant reminder of the darker side of the nursing community. One where compassion and support should thrive, ultimately turns into shame and turmoil. After sustaining a debilitating back injury in the line of duty, Melanie found herself facing a different kind of pain – one inflicted by the very peers who should have been her pillars of strength. And quite literally didn’t have her back. Nurses are often celebrated for their unwavering dedication and compassion, but Melanie's experience serves as a haunting example of the times when this community failed its own. The bullying and hate she encountered were not only disheartening but also a betrayal of the very principles that nursing is built upon.

Melanie's journey is a stark reminder that the nursing community, like any other, is not immune to the pitfalls of discrimination, harassment, and a lack of empathy. Her story stands as a call to action, urging us to address the systemic issues that perpetuate such behavior within the profession and to rebuild a nursing community that provides not only care to patients but also the essential support and kindness to its own members.

At Mels Crafty Corner, nursing is not merely a profession; it is an art form. She has mastered blending expertise with empathy & transforming healthcare into a tapestry of comfort and care through her handmade goods. The dedication and compassion she exhibits every day serve as a testament to the noble nature of nursing.

What truly sets Melanie apart is the warmth and compassion she extends to every individual. Her community she built provides solace, support, and a comforting touch in times of vulnerability. Her craft lies in their ability to make her ‘fRNds’ feel seen, heard, valued and appreciated; turning every interaction into a genuine and human connection.

Melanie deserves this award not only for her exceptional nursing skills but also for her heartwarming compassion and the lasting impact she makes on every life she touches. She is an artist in the world of healthcare, and she deserves to be celebrated for her craft of compassion. She is not just a nurse; she is a master crafter of health and well-being. Her artistry in nursing is a testament to the extraordinary impact one person can have on the lives of many. CONGRATS @mel’s crafty coRNer 🩺🌸🌈 for being voted as the Nurse Entrepreneur of the Year, Best of Nursing Awards presented by Mel, your dedication & hard word are not unnoticed! 🎉💜 #nursepreneur #entrepreneur #entrepreneurship #nurseentrepreneur #nursebusinessowner #nursebusiness #smallbusiness #nurse #nursing #nurses ♬ original sound -

Anthony Scarpone-Lambert & Jennifferre Mancillas

  • Instagram: @anthonyscarponelambert, @adniapp 

  • Website: Adni Marketplace

  • Anthony Scarpone-Lambert and Jennifferre Mancillas are the founders of Adni, previously Lumify, a healthcare gear and resources marketplace made by nurses for nurses. This platform is focused on providing what nurses need and want to make their lives easier and/or more fun, from nurse-specific products to partnerships with wellness programs. He has also created a nurse community group for nurses to support each other. I'm nominating Anthony for Nurse Entrepreneur of the Year not just for creating a great resource for nurses, but because of his dedication to elevating other healthcare entrepreneurs. When selecting products and vendors, he prioritizes finding vendor companies that are founded or run by other healthcare professionals. He effectively has providing these entrepreneurs with a platform to sell their goods to their target audience, creating a ripple effect of impact that elevates *many* healthcare businesses outside of his own.      

  • Video clips

Courtney Hogenson

About: Courtney Hogenson is a Registered Nurse, Certified Aging Life Nurse Manager, and Advanced Legal Nurse Consultant whose expertise in elder care and patient advocacy provides invaluable guidance for patients and their families. She has over ten years of experience serving as the primary liaison and medical advisor for patients, families, doctors, fiduciaries, attorneys, guardians and trustees.

Courtney is also the Founder and CEO of Call-Light — an on-demand healthcare platform where anyone can safely hire an experienced nurse or clinician for in-home care anytime, anyplace. As a nurse and patient advocate, she knows that keeping patients in the comfort of their own homes is crucial to driving positive outcomes and maintaining dignity in care. The platform also empowers nurses and clinicians to choose when, where, and with whom they work — which is vastly important to Courtney as a nurse leader who is passionate about uplifting the healthcare provider community.

Courtney started her nursing career as an RN at UCLA in the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care Unit (CTICU) and as a member of their ICU Resource Team. She later went on to found multiple successful healthcare businesses, including Heal at Home, LLC (non-medical home care agency), RN Care Consultants, LLC (care management firm), Heal at Home Nursing, Inc (private nurse registry) and Nurses Onsite, Inc (corporate wellness company).

As both an Advanced Professional member of the Aging Life Care Association and as an official Alzheimer’s Association Public Policy Ambassador, Courtney works to raise awareness about Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia — including volunteering as a special guest speaker for the Alzheimer’s Association through the Speaker’s Bureau. She has also served as a panel speaker regarding care management, health care, and elder issues with the Senior Advisory Group.

Jennifer Zahourek

Kathryn Dickson

Sarah Nadimpalli, RN, PhD

Tara Kosmas

  • Instagram: @kosmicgarden, @debriefingthefrontlinesinc  

  • Website: Debriefing the Front Lines

  • Tara was working as an Assistant Professor and Simulation Lab Director at Towson University in Baltimore, MD when the pandemic began. She began to receive a large number of reach outs from former students and nursing colleagues who were fearful for themselves, patients, families and the community at large. 16 days after a global pandemic was declared, Tara facilitated her first debriefing session and one by one began Debriefing the Front Lines. 

Not only is Tara a nurse of 20 years - she is a burn survivor and former burn trauma nurse. Her commitment to fostering a safe place is unwavering. 

Tara is the recipient of the Operation Lemon-Aid Mental Health Award for her advocacy and commitment in the mental health space. She is a well known speaker and educator - speaking this year at Penn State Hershey Medical Center Leadership Forum on Debriefing Single Incident and Cumulative Care Taking Trauma and Nurses for Sexual and Reproductive Health and the Rekindled Nurse Conference just to name a few. Her work DTFL has been featured in several news articles and clips across the US including - The Baltimore Sun, Colorado ABC7, Wink and Fox4 News in Southwest FL. 

Zach Smith, BSN-RN

  • Instagram: @wazzuzach 

  • LinkedIn:  

  • Website: NurseGrid

  • Article: HealthStream pays $25M to acquire Portland startup NurseGrid, maker of a mobile app for nurses – GeekWire

  • Article: This is How I Went From Nurse To Marketing Executive at BALA Shoes

  • Video:  

  • Zach has always been a standout in the nurse entrepreneur world, even if not everyone sees the full extent of his impact. Being his wife, I've seen up close all the amazing things he's done for nurses through the startups he's been part of.

  • After seven years of hands-on nursing, Zach jumped into the tech scene with NurseGrid, one of the first companies focused just on nurses. This app, which has been used by over 2 million health workers, changed the game by helping them organize their work schedules and connect with co-workers in ways no one had done before. Zach was a big driving force behind it, playing a key role in shaping the app and leading several teams. The company eventually sold for $25M in 2020. But what made Zach special was how he always had the nurses' backs. He took the time to explain the world of nursing to every new team member during their first week so they understood the people they were working for. Not many saw the countless hours he spent standing up for nurses, both inside the company and out in public. When the company's direction started changing at the direction of the Board, Zach, being the only nurse left, constantly spoke up to ensure it stayed true to helping nurses, not just making a profit.

Also, it's worth noting that Zach has always been there for any nurse reaching out for advice (of which there were many). He'd always pen thoughtful responses, showing he truly cared, even if most people never saw this side of him.

After his time with NurseGrid, Zach was part of a new venture making shoes for nurses. Even though he was the only nurse on the founding team, he made sure the company kept their focus on who they were serving. He played a big role in growing their brand, with sales hitting $1M even before the official launch and $4M in just half a year. But when the company's vision started shifting away from truly serving nurses, Zach chose to leave, even though the timing wasn't great for us as a family (to put it lightly! We had just bought a house and had our second kid). His commitment to helping nurses always came first in his career.

Lately, Zach's been making waves on LinkedIn. He's gone from zero to 10,000 followers in less than a year, with many of his posts going viral and getting engagement not seen by any other nurse on the platform. It's clear he's got a way of connecting with nurses like few others. He's even made some viral videos.

On the side, Zach advises businesses wanting to work with nurses, but he's choosy. He only teams up with those who genuinely want to help nurses. Some companies even wanted him as a co-founder, but he turned them down, believing he could do more good in other ways.

Right now, he's working with a staffing agency, blending his tech know-how with his passion for advocating for nurses, and is sending uniquely popular emails to over 300k healthcare workers.

After nearly 10 years in the business, what sets Zach apart as a top-notch nurse entrepreneur is all the stuff he does behind the scenes. Whether it's fighting for nurses in board meetings, offering personal support, or giving free advice to startups with the right mission, Zach's been a game-changer in the nursing world. And I'm certain he's always thinking about his next big move to make things even better for nurses everywhere.

Nurse Influencer


Bonnie Clipper 

Farah Laurent 



Nurse Blake


Rebecca Love 

Stephanee Beggs

Inspirational Nurse

  • Amber Ghafer 

  • Adenike Okeowo 

  • Alyna Ahmed 

  • Cheryl Krick Bealer

  • Corinna Hughes 

  • Elisabeth Saldo 

  • Elizabeth Szwajnos

  • Jenna Pratt

  • Maria F Bizau

  • Mary Rose Ludovice 

  • Nicole Minsterman

  • Nina Burkhart 

  • Rhonda Stewart

  • Solomon Moindi 

Nurse Leader

Wali Khan

Brandy Pinkerton RN 

  • Instagram: @travnurse101

  • Brandy Pinkerton is on IG at travnurse101. She has been so incredibly helpful in the travel nurse industry. She is a great mentor with lots of tips and encouragement for me and my friends when it comes to travel nursing. She is so sweet and kind.

Casey Green 

  • LinkedIn

  • Instagram: @criticalcarecasey 

  • “I am nominating Casey Green (Critical Care Casey, Alphabet Soup Queen, or as I know her, my wife) She is a true advocate for the profession, DEI initiatives, nursing students, and new graduate nurses. She is always positive about nursing even when it feels like there are only negatives. She's been featured in AD campaigns, won awards for her care, leadership, and for being a motivated student while somehow doing everything else. She motivated me and inspired me to go through nursing school and to get my BSN. I get to see how hard she works from a different angle than the rest of the world.”

Claudia Polendo

  • Claudia deserves the honor for her strong clinical skill and leadership. She’s a boss, who leads with insight and inspiration, recognizes accomplishments and courage, appreciates her employees, and models thoughtfulness day after day. Recently, I read an article about bringing back our hearts to healthcare, that all staff should get back to this and ensure our patients can feel it. As I was reading it, I thought it was so awesome how my Director Claudia epitomized this way of caring and working.

As a leader she reminds her team of the “why”behind the work to keep them inspired, focused, and passionate. 

She has an eye on the big picture and is showing appreciation for the tiny victories along the way. She discovers our unique strengths and works with them, she guides us and removes the obstacles on our behalf. 

She has been a nurse for nearly 15 years now and recently accepted to be the Director for three of our units. Working with her, and now under her supervision has been a great honor due to the high moral standards she holds for her employees and also the patients. 

It is truly a blessing to have an amazing director like her.

Erin Herrera, MSN, CRNA

Farah Laurent

  • Instagram: @nursefarahinc

  • Website

  • LinkedIn: 

  • YouTube: 

  • Farah is a dynamic powerful Speaker, Writer, Educator and Nurse Career Coach. She is a Nurse and Career Advancement and Professional Development Expert. Farah is known for creating strong connections and inspiring nurses globally. Farah’s authenticity and bubbly personality has landed her on many different podcasts, LinkedIn live shows and Nursing Media. Farah is the host of her own Linkedln live show entitled “The Nursing Dose with Farah,” where she has interviewed many nurses and famous guests, such as David Meltzer, to share strategies for career success. Farah is full of energy and joy, in fact, her name means Happiness!

  Gloria Barrera

  • Instagram: @NursesThatWow

  • X: @BarreraGloria 

  • Article:  

  • Gloria is aware of the unique position she has in bridging health and education for students and families as a certified school nurse and provides continuity of nursing care that isn’t seen in other settings.  She continues to serve as a leader of school nursing in the state of Illinois and served as a President of the Illinois Association of School Nurses from 2020-2022. During the pandemic, she participated in webinars, media interviews and podcasts related to the school nurse role and their tremendous impact in mitigating COVID-19.  She testified as a subject matter expert hearing in Springfield on the shortage of nursing and its direct impact on the specialty of school nursing on March 29, 2022.  In her testimony she noted that even before the pandemic, school nurses have been on the frontlines of bridging health care and education, providing care coordination, and advocating for quality student-centered care.  She also shared her vision to have a certified school nurse in every school. 

She also collaborated with other organizations and federal agencies.  Gloria is an exceptional leader within the specialty of school nursing.  She elevated the profession through her volunteer work as an advisory council member of the Resilient Schools Certification Steering Committee through the Center from Childhood Resilience (CCR) and Lurie Children’s Hospital.  The crucial partnership advanced the development of the Resilient Schools Certification (RSC), an opt-in process designed to help schools understand how well they are providing whole-child support to students. School nurses are frontline healthcare providers and often are the first school professional staff to identify a student with behavioral healthcare concerns.  School nurses have tremendous potential to work with other school-based behavioral health (SBBH) providers to implement school mental health programs.  Gloria went on to present a national webinar to educate colleagues on Elevating the Role of School Nurses on SBBH Teams with the National Association of School Nurses (NASN).

The influence she generated behind HB5601 and HR817 led to the Illinois State Board of Education allocating a school nurse capacity study and provide funding of $350,000.  At the national level, Barrera was honored with the National Association of School Nurses’ President’s Award for her work on the NASN’s DEI Task Force.  On the DEI Task Force, Barrera advocated for a new DEI Leadership in School Nursing Award to recognize her peers that may have been otherwise marginalized within the organization.  She has presented nationally on the legislative and advocacy work of IASN, and with the CDC on Infection Control and Prevention Guidelines for K-12 Schools.  Furthermore, she has lend her voice on various platforms as the expert in public health, most recently as the lead for Salud America’s Twitter Chat on Mental Health Impacting Youth in the U.S. and was part of the steering committee for the Stock Albuterol rollout, and helped pass legislation last year that included money for undesignated asthma medications in schools to protect children who have an asthma attack in school, a huge victory! This year, she was part of the Stock Albuterol coalition that passed Public Act 102-1122 which allows school nurses and other trained personnel to administer undesignated asthma medication to any person whom they believe to be experiencing respiratory distress.  

Her dedication to the nursing profession, strong involvement with other nursing organizations, leadership roles within nursing, and commitment to the improvement of public health is unwavering, and most deserving of this recognition.  

Leah Helmbrecht

Madeline Feliciano-Weiser

  • LinkedIn: 

  • As a nurse manager on 5N at Lancaster Medical Center, this nurse has been committed to creating a culturally diverse workforce within her department since inception. The success of this venture can be seen in the unit’s positive quality outcomes including patient satisfaction. Her involvement in DEI activities has a long history with PSH. While working as Clinical Coordinator for the Cancer Center at HMC, she served as an advocate for approximately 75 Limited English Proficient patients/families, ensuring adequate resources were available in their native languages thereby increasing their ability to comprehend their disease, prognosis, treatment plan side effects and available resources. As an RN IV working at Penn Medicine she developed oral and written chemotherapy education standards for Limited English Proficient patients and acted as the telehealth assessment RN for the same population. The success of the was increased patient satisfaction scores: Sensitive to Patient Needs- 100%, Staff Worked Together for Your Care- 88.9%.

Ms. Feliciano-Weiser acts as chair for LMC DEI Committee. She is a member of the Interpretive Services Advisory Group and contributed to the development of the system wide DEI Playbook. While at the Cancer Institute she was a member of Commission on Cancer Quality Improvement: Language Barriers in Oncology Service Line and the Diversity Committee: Increasing Diversity in Clinical Trials.

Madeline has been published in Becker’s Healthcare Review: What Nurses of Color Want White Nurse to Know, Do Nurses of Color Feel Excluded in Hospitals? “Yes. Every. Single. Day.” and Want Meaningful Diversity in Your Hospital? Promote Nurses of Color. She has also been interviewed regarding microaggressions within the nursing profession for articles including: How Nurses of Color Can Forge Their Own Paths: DNPs of Color Panel and DNPs of Color Discuss Microaggressions in the Workplace.

Ms. Feliciano-Weiser’s commitment to promote DEI is also evidenced by multiple speaking engagements including:

National Association of Hispanic Nursing 48th Annual Conference: “Aliados a Complices (Allies to Accomplices)”

Pennsylvania College of Healthcare Sciences 2022 Colloquium: “Allies to Accomplices: Nurse Leaders Bringing Change”

The National Organization for Arts in Health: Panel Member: “Inclusion in Healthcare Through the Arts”

PSH Hispanic Heritage Month 2021: Panel Member: Providing Culturally Responsive Care to Hispanic/Latinx Patients and Cancer Disparities in the Hispanic and Latinx Communities

Oncology Nursing Society Red Rose Chapter: “Diversity in Nursing: Why It Matters”

Penn State College of Medicine Healthcare Career Exploration Program: “Cultural Competence in Healthcare”

Madeline extends her commitment to DEI through membership in: National Association of Hispanic Nurses (goal to achieve a local chapter in Lancaster, PA), National Association of Latino Healthcare Executives, ANA, PSNA and Oncology Nursing Society. She has also received the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Workplace certificate from University of South Florida’s Office of Corporate Training and Professional Education.

Madeline’s commitment spans nearly a decade and continues to build momentum.

Rachel Spalding, DNP, RN, NEA-BC

Raquel Perez

Rebecca Love 

Stephanee Beggs

Tamara AL-Yassin

Tara Kosmas

  • Instagram: @kosmicgarden, @debriefingthefrontlinesinc  

  • Website: Debriefing the Front Lines

  • Tara was working as an Assistant Professor and Simulation Lab Director at Towson University in Baltimore, MD when the pandemic began. She began to receive a large number of reach outs from former students and nursing colleagues who were fearful for themselves, patients, families and the community at large. 16 days after a global pandemic was declared, Tara facilitated her first debriefing session and one by one began Debriefing the Front Lines. 

Not only is Tara a nurse of 20 years - she is a burn survivor and former burn trauma nurse. Her commitment to fostering a safe place is unwavering. 

Tara is the recipient of the Operation Lemon-Aid Mental Health Award for her advocacy and commitment in the mental health space. She is a well known speaker and educator - speaking this year at Penn State Hershey Medical Center Leadership Forum on Debriefing Single Incident and Cumulative Care Taking Trauma and Nurses for Sexual and Reproductive Health and the Rekindled Nurse Conference just to name a few. Her work DTFL has been featured in several news articles and clips across the US including - The Baltimore Sun, Colorado ABC7, Wink and Fox4 News in Southwest FL. 

Tina Loarte-Rodriguez

Tina's journey through the intricacies of healthcare is nothing short of remarkable. Her unique ability to orchestrate the delicate balance between cultural humility and High Reliability Science had a transformative impact on healthcare systems, elevating patient experiences and driving superior outcomes. She effortlessly navigated the complex terrains of clinical quality care, regulatory preparedness, and organizational development, establishing herself as a master of change management. 

Yet, what truly distinguishes Tina is her steadfast dedication to breaking down barriers in healthcare. Armed with rigorous research methodologies and an unshakable commitment to accountability, she has embarked on a noble quest to close the gap in health equity and cultivate an unassailable culture of safety. 

However, this wasn't just a professional pursuit; it was a personal vocation. Tina's heart beats with a profound passion for advocating for and empowering marginalized communities. Her roots in successfully leading health equity grant programs runs deep, nurturing the seeds of transformation she tirelessly planted. 

Tina's educational journey is a testament to her unwavering dedication. She holds a Doctorate in Nursing Practice and a Master of Science in Nursing Leadership from the esteemed Quinnipiac University , and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Connecticut. Her foundation in human development and family studies, a Bachelor of Science earned at Cornell University, add depth to her unique perspective. 

Her extensive qualifications include certifications in Mental Health First Aid, a Connecticut Registered Nurse License, and board certifications in Healthcare Risk Management, Patient Safety, and Infection Control and Epidemiology. Each certification represents her commitment to excellence in her field. 

But Tina is not just a practitioner; she is also a prolific author. Her book, "Latinas in Nursing”, bares testament to her dedication to diversity and inclusion. Moreover, she has contributed to an array of publications, sharing her insights on topics ranging from cultural competence to infection prevention measures, imprinting her indelible mark on the industry.

In recent times, Tina graced numerous stages as a distinguished speaker and moderator. Her presence illuminated events like the New England Minority Nurse Leadership Conference and the National Latino Leadership Conference, where she shared her wisdom and empowered others. She also participated in panel discussions, addressing critical subjects such as Latinas in leadership and colorism.

Tina's tireless efforts garnered recognition and accolades. She received prestigious awards, including the Hartford Business Journal and New Haven Biz Healthcare Hero award. In 2021, the Connecticut Nursing Association honored her and her team with the Excellence in Team Award, a testament to their exceptional teamwork. In 2020, she received the Tedesco Award from the Wheeler Clinic for her outstanding service to communities and the people she served. 

And so, Tina Loarte-Rodriguez's narrative continues to evolve – a tale of unwavering passion, unparalleled expertise, and an unyielding commitment to transforming the realm of healthcare, one step at a time, one person at a time. 

Wendy Garvin-Mayo

Nursing Organization/Association

Debriefing the Front Lines

  • Instagram

  • Nurse and Veteran founded 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization

  • Founded on March 26, 2020, Debriefing the Front Lines is the only national nurse led mental health organization debriefing single incident and cumulative care taking trauma. 

American Association of Nurse Practitioners

  • AANP is the largest and only full-service national professional membership organization for NPs of all specialties.

American Nurses Association

  • The American Nurses Association (ANA) is the premier organization representing the interests of the nation's 4 million registered nurses. ANA is at the forefront of improving the quality of health care for all. 

American Nurses Association\ California

  • The American Nurses Association\California (ANA\C) has represented California’s registered nurses as a leading voice for the nursing profession.

Impact in Healthcare

  • Instagram

  • Healthcare Workers and Patients fighting for a better system through education, research, and direct action.

Indiana Organization for Nursing Leadership

  • The Indiana Organization for Nursing Leadership (IONL) is the professional organization for nurses who design, facilitate and manage care. IONL is the leading Indiana voice of nursing leadership in health care.

National Association of Hispanic Nurses

  • Since 1975, NAHN has been the nation’s leading professional society for Latino nurses. 

National Black Nurses Association

  • NBNA serves as the professional voice for over 200,000 African American registered nurses, licensed vocational/practical nurses, nursing students and retired nurses from the USA, Eastern Caribbean, and Africa.

National Nurses United

  • National Nurses United, with nearly 225,000 members nationwide, is the largest union and professional association of registered nurses in U.S. history.

New York State Nurses Association

  • The New York State Nurses Association is a union of 42,000 frontline nurses united together for strength at work, our practice, safe staffing, and healthcare for all.

Travel Nursing Agency

NuWest Travel Nursing

  • Great travel nursing assignments at top hospitals nationwide +perks +benefits +rewards! 

Trusted Health

  • Helping travel nurses and allied health professionals build the lives they want.

Winners and Awards

All submissions: Anyone who is nominated will be named on as a "Best of Nursing" Awards Finalist

All finalists progress to the final round of voting. The category winners will be decided through an online vote.

Voting ends on 11/19/23

Category winners to receive: 

  • A digital badge to display online

  • Named as The Best [category] on (over 1 million visitors per month!)

  • Exclusive feature on

  • Shout-out on’s social media accounts (reaching over 30 million users per month!)

  • Featured in's weekly newsletter (300,000 subscribers)

Let's join together to recognize and celebrate the nursing industry!

Voting closes on 11/19/23

Last Year's Winners

The following nurses and nursing students were named as the winners of their respective categories in 2022/23. 

Category Winners

  • Jonathan V. Llamas, Nurse Leader of The Year

  • Brandy Pinkerton, Most Inspirational Nurse

  • Kathleen Green, Nurse Creator of The Year

  • Spencer Jones, Nurse Innovator of The Year

  • Kristine, New Nurse Go-Getter

  • Alexis Heal, Nursing Student To Watch

2021 Winners

Nursing Community Awards

Best Products for Nurses

Best in Nursing Education

Best in Nursing Careers

Best Entertainment For Nurses

Most Important Nursing Issues

  • The nursing issue of the year - Nurse Burnout

  • Nurse image of the year - "Hero" by @mjhiblenart

  • Legislator(s) of the year -  Senator Sherrod Brown & Representative Jan Schakowsky - introduced "S.1567 - Nurse Staffing Standards for Hospital Patient Safety and Quality Care Act of 2021"

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