Community to nominate nurses for Nightingale Luminary Awards

Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017 6:30 PM
Honorees gather on stage for the 2017 Nightingale and Star Awards at the Henry Strater Theatre.

Southwestern Colorado Area Health Education Center recently announced that nominations are being accepted through Jan. 15 for the eighth annual Nightingale Luminary Awards, which recognizes up to six outstanding area nurses each year at the Henry Strater Theatre.

The Nightingale Awards event was founded in 1985 to honor nurses who best exemplify the philosophy and practice of 19th-century nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale.

Registered nurses throughout the state are nominated through solicitation by the Area Health Education Centers system. Each region hosts a local event for nominees and finalists – the luminaries – are selected, and the State Selection Committee determines award recipients.

Last year, more than 100 people attended the event, and fundraising efforts yielded about $1,000 for the Nightingale Community Nursing Scholarship fund.

Two registered nurses can be nominated for two categories: clinical practice and non-traditional roles. Nominees will be judged according to advocacy, leadership and innovation.

Six nurses represented Southwest Colorado at the state level last year, including: Susan Caudle, Jody Lamb and Nikole Young for the clinical-practice category, and Sara Carver, Amanda Harrison and Terri Schmitt for non-traditional roles.

To nominate a nurse for this year’s awards ceremony, visit

AHEC also promotes its Star Awards and “Art and Science of Nursing” art auction at the event, and will honor a “rising star” novice nurse and “shining star” expert nurse. Last year, Bobbi Lock was “rising star” and Martha Anchando was “shining star.”

Over the past seven years, the program has raised more than $2,950 and provided eight scholarships to second-year nursing students. Roger Youngs and Tracy Beanland, second-year nursing students at Southwest Colorado Community College, were awarded scholarships at last year’s event.