Straight Talk - “Thank you, leaders all”

February 23, 2012

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

This week we celebrated Presidents’ Day, which commemorates “leadership.”  That got me to thinking about all the leaders—both formal and informal—we have around NCH and in our community.  These are people I would describe as being trustworthy, communicative, respectful, transparent, positive, collaborative, conscientious, compassionate, and having shared values.  All are passionate about what they do.  “A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position,” stated John Maxwell, a noted leadership guru.     

Here are just a few examples of NCH leaders (in alphabetical order):
  • Lesage Augustin and Karen Wald are two pillars of the team which runs our “bed board.”  They are NCH “airport controllers,” orchestrating a busy schedule for 715 beds and 36,000 admissions each year.
  • Linda Cifani, ARNP, has had a busy year organizing a team of 13 cardiologists and moving all into the beautiful Naples Heart Institute, a 24,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art office on the 3rd floor of the Briggs Health Pavilion.
  • Elizabeth Foster, 3 South night charge nurse, helped revise the clinical ladder for nursing, which rewards educational achievements that enhance careers and improve care for patients and families.
  • Flora Frazier in North Naples Environmental Service is always in motion, happy and charming, as she and her wonderful teammates insure that our “first impression” is a great one, keeping us clean, tidy, and in order.
  • Jon Kling, Director of Critical Care, manages 58 beds, 130 ICU nurses and 25 other highly technically competent colleagues, who care for approximately 2,783 of the most critically ill patients each year.  Jon also assists greatly with compliance issues.
  • Richard Moore is one of 32 talented building engineers, who keep our facilities in shape, even the older structures.  We cover more than 875,000 square feet all within complicated buildings, huge infrastructure, and a multitude of stresses—all humming along flawlessly, thanks to Richard and his colleagues.
  • Maria Racine and James Quero, purchasing agents, have been busy as new construction and refurbishing of older units necessitates complicated purchases of new equipment.  Together, they obtain appropriate value—the right materials at the right price—and all at “hospital grade.”
  • Sue Slaght, Director of Revenue Reimbursement Oversight, is the most clever finance person when it comes to understanding reimbursement issues and expected decreases.  She and competent teammates Noble Arrington and Jerry Markham keep us straight financially, no easy task these days in healthcare.
  • Julie Stoner, North Naples Emergency Room nurse, is team leader for shared governance and a stellar member of the practice council.  Julie’s mom, Alva, who recently retired as a unit secretary, had the same wonderful “can do” attitude.
  • Jeff Weiss (no relation), oncology pharmacist for 17 years, is meticulous in collaborating with our 16 oncologists to secure proper protocols, in as safe a manner as possible, of extremely powerful medications for cancer patients.
  • Scott Wiley, Director of Respiratory Therapy, consistently steps up when the organization acquires a new need or function.  Recent examples of his leadership include management of the HERT (Hospital Emergency Response Team) and supervision of cardiac imaging throughout the system.
These are but a handful of the wonderful formal and informal leaders who define our culture and make us who we are in the community.  There are thousands more colleagues whom we need to thank for the extraordinary leadership and inspiration they provide each and every day at NCH.  So thank you, leaders all!


Allen S. Weiss, M.D., President and CEO

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