NADONA Announces 2020 Nurse Leader of the Year Recipients

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October 13, 2020 — Cincinnati, Ohio—The National Association Directors of Nursing Administration (NADONA) is pleased to announce the 2020 winners of the Nurse Leader of the Year Award and Regional Nurse Leader of the Year Awards.

This award is presented to the Nurse Leader of the Year, with awards also presented to nurses in selected regions. The winners of the 2020 awards are as follows:

National Nurse Leader of the Year

Alicia Fereno MSN, RN, CDONA, FACDONA, IP-BC—National - Ms. Fereno is the Director of Nursing at the Rose Garden Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Toms River, NJ. She has been working in long-term care for 29 years with 24 of those years at Rose Garden, maintaining the only 5 star facility in Tom’s River, NJ. Alicia’s certifications are: Qualified Department of Health Evaluator for Certification of Nurses’ Aides; MDS (Minimum Data Set Certified); NADONA Certified Director of Nursing Administration in LTC; NADONA Board Certified Infection Prevention; PRI Certified; Advisory council member of the Ocean County Vocational/Technical School for Long Term Care Nurses Aide; Advisory council member of the Ocean County College; Education member of the NJADONA; Educational Chairman of the PNN -Ocean County; Certificate of Achievement - NHSN Reporting, 2017; Certificate of Excellence, New Jersey Association of Director of Nurses; Infection Preventionist.

Her awards include Top Recruiter awarded by the Philippine Nurses Association of NJ on September 14, 2019; Selected as a Finalist of the Nurse of the Year Award by March of Dimes on September 10, 2019; Member of Sigma Theta International, May 2019; President of the Philippine Nurses Association of New Jersey; Ocean County Sub¬ Chapter for year 2018; Recipient of the Rising Star Award for year December 8, 2018 by the Philippine Nurses Association; Recipient of the "100 Club# Area Subchapter for year 2018 by the Philippine Nurses Association; 2016-2018 President-elect of the Philippine Nurses Association of New Jersey; Ocean County Sub-Chapter; Certification of Award, Above and Beyond Recognition from the New Jersey Association of Director of Nursing Administration April 2017; Vice President of the Philippine Nurses Association of New Jersey; Ocean County Sub-Chapter for year 2016. Excellence Award from NJADONA, "Deficiency Free Survey, April 2014-April 2015". On April 20, 2013, Alicia was recognized for 22 years of excellent service in Nursing LTC by NJADONA. Certificate of Recognition for outstanding commitment, service and dedication as Vice President; 2012, 2014 PNANJ, Ocean County sub-Chapter. Vice President of the Philippine Nurses Association of New Jersey; Ocean County Sub¬ Chapter for year 2012. Recipient of the Nurse Administrator of the year 2011 by the Philippine Nurses Association NJ; Recipient of the Nurse Leader Award for year 2010 by the Philippine Nurses Association Ocean Subchapter. April 14, 2011 received the Excellence Award at the NJADONA Conference. The New Jersey Association of Director of Nursing Administration proudly honored Alicia Fereno as Director of Nursing of the Year for 2010.

Regional Nurse Leaders of the Year

  • Rhodora “Dots” LaCap RN, BSN, MS, CDP, CADDCT, CIC, NCCDP, CDONA, FACDONA - Southwest Region—Ms. LaCap is the Director of Nursing/Clinical Services at Brookdale Carmel Valley, Brookdale Senior Living, San Diego, CA. She has served in long-term care for 40 years and has served in her current position for 2 years. Ms. LaCap has been a member of NADONA for 23 years.
  • Tricia Bruder RN, IP-BC, CNLE, CRP - Central Region— Ms. Bruder is the Director of Nursing at Chesterwood Village, Hillandale Communities, West Chester, OH. She has served in long-term care for 25 years and has served as a Nurse Administrator for 7 years of those years.
  • Seth Fisher RN, BAN, RAC—CT, ACLS, PALS, TNCC, CDONA, FACDONA - Northwest Region—Mr. Fisher was the Director of Nursing at Knife River Care Center, Beulah, ND until June of 2020. He is currently serving as a BP3 State Regional Coordinator for the BP Task Force, for North Dakota Human Services. He has served in long-term care for 12 years and has served as a Nurse Administrator for 7 of those years.
  • Tanya Burris BSN, RN, Southeast Region—Ms. Burris is the Director of Nursing at Bainbridge Health and Rehabilitation Facility, Mission Health Communities, Bainbridge, GA. She has served in long-term care for 7 years and has served as a Nurse Administrator for 6 of those years.

The NADONA Nurse Leader of the Year is a very competitive and prestigious award, with the following criteria for nomination being followed:

  • Candidate must be a member of NADONA.
  • Candidate must be nominated by a health professional colleague such as a facility administrator or attending physician.Self-nomination is not permitted.
  • The application process must include a biography of the candidate and letters of recommendation from facility personnel and residents.
  • Candidates are selected by an awards committee which is comprised of NADONA/LTC members.

Criteria and nomination submission for the 2021 Nurse Leader of the Year Award will be posted on the NADONA site after November 15, 2020.

About NADONA
NADONA has been the leading advocate and educational organization for DONs, ADONs and Nurse Leaders in long-term and post-acute care since 1986. With 32 state chapters, it continues to be the largest organization representing nurses working in long-term and post-acute care settings. NADONA offers a wide array of services to its members, including educational materials, national and state conferences, scholarships, Infection Prevention Certificate of Mastery Program, Antibiotic Stewardship Certificate of Mastery Program; Pathfinder Program, Executive Fellows Leadership Academy, Director of Nursing, Licensed Practical Nurse, Assisted Living, Geriatric Diabetes certification programs, a mentoring program and a quarterly journal, The Director. Through its publications and programs, NADONA reaches approximately 20,000 nurses who are employed in long-term care.

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author, and do not represent the views of WoundSource, Kestrel Health Information, Inc., its affiliates, or subsidiary companies.

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