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VNA Annual Recognition Dinner

Nearly 100 staff members, donors, board members, volunteers and guests attended the recent Visiting Nurse Association of Northwest Indiana's annual dinner held at the Old Town Banquet Center in Valparaiso. The event was preceded by a reception for VNA Forever Society members.

President and CEO of the VNA of Northwest Indiana, Ann O’Heir, said they like to take an evening out every year to recognize their team. “We have a great, cohesive team that has such a strong leadership. We care for people and we care for them quickly when they need us,” said O’ Heir. “These nurses, aids, and pastors are out on their own in the field. They don’t have that additional support that the caregivers do in hospitals and extended care facilities. We have such a serious career with what we do on a day-to-day basis, so, this down time is nice to be able to laugh and relax together.”

During the evening, Deborah Farrington, a VNA Hospice Aide received a special engraved watch in celebration of 30 years of service with the VNA of NWI. Deb also was the recipient of the VNA Caregiver of the Year award. Said one of Deborah’s co-workers, “Deb is all about the patients. They are her primary focus. She is a team player and helps keep the VNA Hospice Center running smoothly.”

Awards presented during the evening included:
Virginian Lence: June McCort Companion of the Year
Deborah Farrington: VNA Caregiver of the Year
Jessica Schlyer: VNA Support Staff of the Year
Jeanne Kokinda, RN, BSN, MBA: Tricia Marie Simpson Russell, RN “Good Nurse of the Year”
Obaid Shafiq, MD: VNA Physician of the Year
Mirko Bebekoski, RN, BS: VNA Patient Advocate of the Year

Tricia’s Scholarship recipients:
Caroline Meyer
Abigail Rose
Moon Beverly Stewart

VNA Service awards:
5 Years:
Monica Hamline
Shawn Housler
Shelley Sieroslawski-Holmen
Jennifer Vorkapich, RN

10 Years:
Rev. Craig A. Forwalter
Lizz Frenzel
Dessie Gross
Linda Shidler

30 Years:
Deborah Farrington

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