Healthcare Heroes! – Hospital employees awarded at May 1 luncheon


IRVING, TX – A salute to the North Texas hospital workforce, the Dallas-Fort Worth Hospital Council Foundation’s (DFWHC Foundation) Annual Employee of the Year Luncheon celebrated its 19th year today with the announcement of the 2015 recipients at Irving Convention Center. More than 700 attendees turned out to honor the 14 winners introduced from a pool of 55 area hospitals.

“Our goal is for this luncheon to serve as a tool for hospitals to inspire great employees,” said Kristin Jenkins, president of the DFWHC Foundation. “We’re attempting make a difference by helping to build morale in our hospitals, improve quality of care, quality of life and recognize the importance of each individual. Every nominee, the best of the best of North Texas, deserved to be recognized today.”

Recipients were:
Rex McRae Scholarship
Megal Hill, Methodist Mansfield Medical Center/El Centro College

Nurse Preceptor Award
Maneoly Casaquite, Unit Supervisor, HCA’s North Hills Hospital

Physician Award
Dr. Kevin Martens, HCA’s Medical Center of McKinney

Volunteer Award
Clarence Griffith, Baylor Jack & Jane Hamilton Heart and Vascular Hospital

Community Service Award
Nancy Valant, Staff Nurse, Methodist Dallas Medical Center

System Award
Darla Whitmire, Administrative Coordinator HR, UT Southwestern University Hospitals

Special Recognition Awards
Anthony Dinsay, Medical Laboratory Scientist, Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Alliance
Jenny Murray, Nursing Supervisor, Tenet’s Centennial Medical Center
Mary Harrison, Supervisor Housekeeping, UT Southwestern Clements University Hospital
Lou Ann Shumate, Clinical Lab Assistant, Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth

Employee of the Year Awards
Chris Talatala, Operating Room Nurse, Texas Health Southlake
Michelle De La Cruz, Nurse Practitioner, Baylor Medical Center at Carrollton
Vernon Lee, Catering Aide, Cook Children’s Health Care System
Susan Mericle, Art Therapist Psychiatric Services, Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas

Captain Chad Fleming, a former member of the U.S. Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment whose heroic service resulted in the amputation of his leg, served an inspirational keynote speech in support of the luncheon theme “Healthcare Heroes.” Dr. John Warner, CEO of UT Southwestern University Hospitals, served as master of ceremonies. Board members of the Dallas-Fort Worth Healthcare Human Resources Association judged nominations with the names and hospitals removed.

About DFW Hospital Council Foundation
The DFWHC Foundation is a non-profit 501c3 public charity with a mission to serve as a catalyst for continual improvement in community health and healthcare delivery through education, research, communication, collaboration and coordination.


September 1, 2015

Chris Wilson, DFW Hospital Council