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Chesapeake Regional Nurses Honored for Exceptional Service

CHESAPEAKE – Chesapeake Regional Healthcare (CRH) honored four outstanding nurses during its annual Nurse Exemplar Awards ceremony held during Nurses Week on Monday, May 6. The Nurse Exemplar Award was established in 2007 by Chesapeake Regional Medical Center’s Professional Nursing Council to annually recognize excellence in the practice of nursing.

Nurse Exemplar
Brianna Komrek, R.N., an intensive care nurse, is this year’s Nurse Exemplar. The Exemplar nurse is among the most exceptional nurses in our organization. Leading by example and dedicated to both patients and co-workers since she arrived at Chesapeake Regional, Komrek has excelled as a role model and is a pillar of knowledge and expertise. Her devotion to patient care and excellent work ethic have made her a standout nurse within the organization. She volunteers for extra shifts and switches to night shift to cover other nurses without hesitation. For her devotion to nursing and commitment to excellence, Komrek was awarded a $1,000 scholarship by the Chesapeake Hospital Auxiliary to further her nursing education, a personal parking place and a crystal award.

In addition to the Nurse Exemplar Award, three additional awards were given to nurses who serve as role models to others, are patient advocates and who display professional excellence in their nursing careers.

Rookie Award
The Rookie Award was created to recognize a nurse new to the profession who displays a commitment to professional growth, compassionate care and teamwork. The winner of this year’s Rookie Award is Chelsea Miller, R.N. Miller has only been a nurse for two years but has quickly become an asset to her unit and the hospital. She takes each new challenge as an opportunity to grow personally and professionally. After earning a bachelor’s degree in Public Health, Miller was encouraged to become a registered nurse at the urging of her mother and sister who are both nurses. She has identified the need to streamline and standardize the nurse orientation process and wants her unit and teammates to succeed. Teaching is a passion of hers, and it shows; she mentors new employees and patients speak highly of her ability to care and her enthusiasm to teach them how to care for themselves. For being an inspirational example and successful so far in her nursing career, Miller received a $1,000 scholarship and a crystal award to commemorate her honor.

Outstanding Leadership Award
Michael Ratcliffe, M.S.N., R.N., C.N.O.R., nurse manager for the nursing supervisors, the Vascular Access Team, RRT/Stroke/Neurosciences and the Clinical Decision Unit, is the recipient of the Outstanding Leadership Award. Ratcliffe has shown exceptional leadership through his actions and the positive results of his diligent work. He has a commitment to ensuring superb nursing care and is loyal to his peers, team and the organization. His accomplishments include the restructuring of the Stepdown Unit from eight to 16 beds while ensuring adequate staffing and training. Ratcliffe raises the bar in his commitment to serving others, whether caring for patients or his team. He always maintains a high level of excellence, professionalism and a positive attitude. For inspiring excellence by leading with honor, commitment and integrity, he was awarded a $500 scholarship and a crystal award.

Legacy Award
This year’s Legacy Award recipient is Kathy Lock, R.N., a nurse who currently works on the mother/baby unit, but who offers decades of nursing experience to everyone from patients and families to fellow nurses. The Legacy Award was created to recognize the most exceptional nurse in the organization, one who is committed to patient experience, quality and safety. Lock, who has been with Chesapeake Regional since 1979, has worked as both a charge nurse and a staff nurse during her career. She retired briefly but returned wanting to continue helping patients. An integral part of the team for 40 years, Lock, who is 71, is dedicated to her patients and persists in earning continuing education units. Her compassion, ability to listen, respond to patients and her willingness to work hard has never wavered. Lock readily learns new processes and technology and encourages her peers to try doing things differently using new methods. She is an example to many and truly a legacy at Chesapeake Regional. For the milestones she’s achieved and for giving her time with loyalty and dedication, Lock was honored with a $500 scholarship, a personal parking place and a crystal award. 

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