Patient Resources

2021 Nursing Annual Report

Message from the Chief Nurse Executive

Susan Hernandez, D.N.P., M.B.A., RN Associate Vice President and Health System Chief Nurse Executive

It is impossible to tell the story of 2021 without acknowledging the unfortunate backdrop of COVID-19.

It’s understandable to focus on the struggles we faced, for the second year in a row, as we navigated life and work through an unyielding pandemic.

But as I flip through the pages of this year’s Nursing Annual Report, two undeniable themes emerge through this very tough tale: perseverance and accomplishment.

Through it all, we earned patient experience scores that were higher than the national average.

Through it all, we attained a second Magnet® designation for UT Southwestern.

And through it all, our nurses used excellence as a baseline, pushing from every corner to elevate their practice and focus on what matters for each individual patient and their families. Our nurses’ dedication shone through particularly with our COVID-19 patients, engaging in ways that helped patients and families feel connected, even when they couldn’t be with their loved one.

In September, we earned our second Magnet designation and were cited with four Exemplars – including one that called out the nursing staff’s mobilization in response to COVID-19. Notably, we set up four community sites that administered more than 4,000 vaccinations per day during the height of the pandemic (nearly 337,000 total for the entire 2021 fiscal year) and provided more than 140,000 tests to date.

I like to remind our nurses that it’s not a separate effort to become Magnet-designated. We would not have achieved that status if it weren’t already a part of our institution’s fiber. Every day, we live and breathe the five Magnet Model components – Transformational Leadership; Structural Empowerment; Exemplary Professional Practice; New Knowledge, Innovation, and Improvements; and Empirical Quality Results.

In the pages that follow, you’ll read more specific examples about our efforts and support for nurse-led research and evidence-based practices, ongoing nurse involvement in leadership at all levels, and a tireless pursuit of innovations aimed at improving quality, safety, and the patient experience.

But I want to call out a few encouraging trends that stand out to me.

“I like to remind our nurses that it’s not a separate effort to become Magnet-designated. We would not have achieved that status if it weren’t already a part of our institution’s fiber.”

By the end of FY 2021, we employed 2,025 specialty certified nurses, a testament to the skill and experience of our RNs. And we see the pattern of professional development continuing, as we watch an increasing number of staff attending certification review courses and applying for tuition scholarships to further their education.

Another of the year’s hallmarks was the sound of nurses professionally using their voice. While I’m on rounds, reading email messages, or watching people raise their hand during my biweekly all-nurse briefings, I’m encountering nurses who are eager to ask questions, speak up about what they see, and share information. It only strengthens the team when nurses speak out in a professional manner. We lose ground when they don’t.

That open and supportive climate doesn’t just happen overnight. Our nurse leaders have worked hard to nurture that environment because, like our broader nursing community, they are committed to our core institutional values of Excellence, Innovation, Teamwork, and Compassion. That’s what we believe. That’s why we’re here.

It’s through these values that we have been able to create a cultural and organizational support network where true multidisciplinary teamwork flourishes. You see it in the mutual respect nurses show for each other and for other members of the clinical team.

Especially in today’s climate, nurses have many choices for employment, and I am so glad that ours choose to be on this team. There’s a reason people stay here while working under pressure like this.

It’s a strong sense of accomplishment that keeps us coming back to work every day. I hope that, like me, all nurses take great pride in their work and celebrate it.

We may have closed the book on 2021, but I know I personally will carry 365 days’ worth of pride and inspiration to sustain me for years to come.

Susan Hernandez, D.N.P., M.B.A., RN
Associate Vice President and Health System Chief Nurse Executive

Nurse Executive Cabinet

Values in Practice

Nursing Philosophy

UT Southwestern is committed to providing quality nursing care through effective use of resources and the development of innovative programs in clinical practice, education, and research.

We value the worth, dignity, and autonomy of our patients and their families. We believe that each individual has unique physical, social, emotional, and spiritual needs that are served through personalized, compassionate care.

We encourage each nurse to care for his or her body, mind, and spirit as a critical element in achieving clinical excellence. Nurses at UT Southwestern are also encouraged to nurture and support one another in an environment that fosters teamwork and interdisciplinary collaboration.

Working collaboratively affords us the opportunity for common goal-setting through trust, mutual respect, and a commitment to open and honest communication in serving our patients.

Our Commitment to Our Patients and Each Other

  • I will do my part to make the hospital environment a peaceful, quiet place dedicated to the healing of the body and spirit.
  • I will anticipate the needs of patients and their families rather than waiting to be asked for assistance.
  • I will own and resolve every problem I can or personally hand over the problem to someone who can resolve it.
  • I will respect the confidentiality of patients, their families, and my colleagues through discrete conversation and attention to privacy.
  • I will be responsible for keeping our work environments clean and safe.
  • I will dress professionally, and I will speak and conduct myself in a manner that always keeps the focus on our patients.
“Often when you you’re at the end of something, you’re at the beginning of something else.” - Fred Rogers, American television host and author

At UT Southwestern we’re immensely proud of all our nurses, and we know our retirees will continue to make us proud wherever their journey takes them next. All of our retired nurses listed below finished their service by bringing comfort to those who needed it. These nurses carefully guided the care of patients and held their hands during some of the happiest and sometimes most stressful times of their lives. They helped countless lives over the course of their careers. We thank these retired nurses for embodying Nurse Excellence while at UTSW, which continues to set the standards for achievements in nursing every day.

2021 Retirees


  • Ida L. Dunn, RN, OCNUH Clinic SCC HemOnc Infusion
  • Deborah Jackson, B.S.N., RNCUH 11 Green Oncology
  • Lori Jean McGarry, M.S.N., RNCUH 9 Blue CV ICU
  • Shelia Jenice Moss, B.S.N., RNIM Mineral Metabolism Clinic
  • Teresita L. Remo, RNCUH 8 Green Telemetry
  • Dorinda N. Scobee, RNIM GIM Clinic


  • Teresita Cariaga Luyun, RNCUH Day Surgery
  • Donna Jennings, RNCUH 6 Blue, 6 Green Med/Surg


  • Debra DesotoAMB Medical Center Clinic Fort Worth
  • Pamela Ann Scott, B.S.N., RN, CCMCare Coordination


  • Soma Rajan Abraham, RNIM Endocrinology Clinic
  • RuthAnn Gehart Grimmer, RNUH Wound Care Clinic
  • Joan K. Roberts, RNCCUH 6 Blue OB & Med/Surg


  • Colleen H. Debes, RNAdult CF Clinic
  • Joe A. Garcia, RNRadiation Oncology Clinic
  • Lorraine Emily Jordan, M.S.N., RN6 Blue OB Med/Surg
  • Helena C. LosinCUH Surgery
  • Leila May Reinert, A.D.N., RNIM Mineral Metabolism Clinic


  • Farida S. Minner, RNC-NICCUH 5 Green NICU


  • Maria Przyslupska, RN, BMTCNCUH 11 Green Oncology


  • Susie Marie Madison, RNIM Infectious Disease


  • Mark R. Anderson, RNCUH 12 Orange Med/Surg
  • Lynne Marie Aniceto, RN, OCN – CUH 10 Orange Med/Surg
  • Elaine Camp, RN – CUH Dialysis
  • Lynette Coleman-Falck, RN – UH Clinic SCC Support Services
  • Valerie Corder, RN – Transplant Services
  • Lita V. Cuadra, B.S.N., RN – CUH 11 Orange Oncology
  • Timothy P. Gorden, RN – Inpatient Rehab Administration
  • Patricia L. Lee, B.S.N., RN, CCRN – CUH 2 Orange SICU
  • Martha Sue Mann, RN – ODL-Core-NTRC
  • Carla Melton, RN – OB Maternal-Fetal Medicine
  • Harriet Quashie, RN – CUH 10 Orange Med/Surg
  • Kathleen F. Ringlehan, RN – CUH 6 Blue OB & Med/Surg
  • Margaret L. Shegog, RN CUH Dialysis
  • Sally Thomas, RN Zale Med/Surg

The Rose-Marie “Rory” Meyers Advanced Education Program for Nursing Excellence

Rose-Marie "Rory" Meyers was an expert nurse with a passion for giving to others in support of nursing education. As a first-generation college student who earned a degree in nursing, her experiences made her into a staunch advocate for those seeking to advance their education. A generous gift from the Meyers family allows for her philanthropic and humanitarian legacy to continue through annual scholarships. Each scholarship awards up to $10,000 a year for UT Southwestern nurses who meet eligibility and are selected by an internal panel of reviewers

The funds can be used to pay for tuition, fees, supplies, and books for nurses pursuing an advanced degree. In keeping with the mission of Ms. Meyers, these scholarships will help lift the financial burden off several first-generation college graduates. There are 23 outstanding nurses in the inaugural class of scholarship recipients of the Rose-Marie “Rory” Meyers Advanced Education Program for Nursing Excellence. In all, 46 qualified candidates completed applications for these scholarships, and the recipients were selected by a committee of UTSW Health System nursing and operational leaders. The applicant names were blinded for the selection process.

Included in the list below are the awarded candidates’ names, levels of advanced nursing education, and current Health System appointments, including their area of service:

Associate Degree in Nursing (A.D.N.) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.)

  • Michelle Minor-Jones, PCT12 Blue Geriatric Stroke
  • Ashley Murillo, RNAston Infusion Clinic

Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.)

  • Tomas Armendariz Jr., B.S.N., RN, QIA (ASCP), CMSRNManager, Apheresis
  • Rachel Faidley, M.S.N., RN, CENClinical Nurse Manager, Emergency Department
  • Danica Ann Fuerte, B.S.N., RNUnit-Based Educator, 10 Green
  • Rebecca Hudson, RN, CVICUCUH
  • Loren Lehtonen, B.S.N., RN, CCRNCardiovascular ICU
  • Claudia Odubona, B.S.N., RN8 Orange EMU
  • Taylor Poyner, B.S.N., RN, CCRNVascular Surgery
  • Caitlin Remaklus, B.S.N., RNCoordinator, Aston-Cranial Neurosurgery
  • Yahaddy Riley, B.S.N., RN, CRRNZale 8 Rehab

Doctor of Nursing Practice (D.N.P.)

  • LanChasica Alexander, M.S.N., PMHNP-BC, APRNPediatric Psychiatry
  • Martha “Edie” Brucker, M.S.N., M.P.H., APRN, AGPCNP-BC, AOCNPAssistant Director APPs, Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Ruben Castillo, M.S.N., RN, CCRN, NE-BCDirector of Medical Services Group
  • Evelynn Githiiyu, M.S.N., RNSr. Project Specialist, Opioid Safety/Health System Quality
  • Kimberly Glaser, APRN, AGACNP-BC, CCRNAcute Care Nurse Practitioner, Neurocritical Care
  • Sharon Le Roux, M.S.N., RN, OCN CMSRNInpatient Oncology 11 Green/11 Orange Manager
  • Amaka Opute, M.S.N., APRN, ACNP-BCAdvanced Practice Provider, Internal Medicine Division of Geriatrics
  • Nirja Patel, M.S.N., APN, CRNA – Staff CRNA, Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Management
  • Kedrica Taylor, B.S.N., RN, PCCNCUH 10 Blue
  • Shinto Thomas M.S.N., RN, PCCN-KManager of Clinical Education

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

  • Rebecca Brooks, M.S.N., APRN, RNC-NIC, PCNS-BCPediatric Clinical Nurse Specialist, Children’s Health Airway Program
  • Stephanie Georgoudiou, M.S.N., APRN, AGPCNP-BC, CWCN- APRNPhysical Medicine and Rehabilitation Wound Care
Victoria England, D.N.P., M.B.A., NE-BC Retired Associate Chief Nursing Officer

One nurse who has nurtured and cared for UTSW is Victoria England, D.N.P., M.B.A., NE-BC, retired Associate Chief Nursing Officer. At UT Southwestern, the Magnet designation and redesignation journey remains part of her legacy. Fewer than 9% of U.S. hospitals have earned Magnet designation, according to the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Magnet. It is considered the ANCC’s highest honor, given to health care organizations that design nursing goals to improve patient outcomes. Dr. England led the organization’s team on the Magnet journey, serving in 2016 as the Magnet Program Director. Guided by her transformational leadership efforts, skill, passion for excellence, and perseverance, UTSW successfully earned that first Magnet designation.

Under Dr. England’s direction, UTSW Nursing improved and refined shared governance structures, nurse education levels, and nurse-led research projects, just to name a few of the milestones. Dr. England’s passion for nursing only intensified through her years of service as she worked to improve nurse retention and actively recruited nurses to UT Southwestern at every conference she attended. She has made tremendous contributions to the nursing profession at this Medical Center.

All of her colleagues recognize that Dr. England is an incredible nurse leader who knows the importance of building relationships and engaging nurses and interprofessional team members in accomplishing organizational goals. She recognizes the importance of excitement and engagement, and she adds fun to all activities and lights up each room she enters. Here are a few more thoughts on her contributions to the profession from many of the voices she helped to amplify:

“Victoria came to UT Southwestern with a passion for the profession of nursing and has been driven throughout her tenure here to instill that same passion into everyone she encounters. She works to elevate the role of the nurse like no other, and for that I have always admired her determination and tenacity. It wasn’t just about achieving Magnet status for Victoria; it truly is about ‘The Nurse.’”

- Shelley Brown-Cleere, M.S.N., RN

“I recall meeting Victoria for the first time and thinking, “Wow, she is highly energized.” A positive wow at that. I’ve always found Victoria to be approachable and engaging. What I appreciate about Victoria is the positive manner in which she promotes the nursing profession and the important role she knows nursing plays in the well-being of our patients. In my career, I appreciate having been on the Magnet journey from the beginning here at UTSW, and I will forever value the many things I learned from Victoria during our initial Magnet designation and our re-designation.” – Mike Mayo, M.S.N., RN, CCRN

“When I think of Victoria, the first thought that comes to my mind is her magnetic energy. It draws every nurse into her and the journey to Magnet designation. I can proudly say that Victoria is one of the ‘influential forces’ that pushed me out of my shell. Her encouragement pushed me to explore a new world of shared governance, impactful leadership, strategic thinking, and advocacy through professional organizations.” – Kavitha Nair, M.S.N., RN, OCN, NEA-BC

“Her passion for nursing practice is contagious and has made all of us better nurses. Dr. England – thank you for everything you have done and for who you are as a nurse and a colleague!”

- Dave Wyatt, Ph.D., RN, NEA-BC, CN

“Victoria England is an inspirational, motivational nurse leader who always guides her practice with a vision of elevating practice for all registered nurses in all roles and settings. She sets high standards and expectations for everyone and refuses to accept mediocrity. She leads with a clear, consistent vision for achieving excellence and is able to motivate and inspire others to engage in that vision. She challenges the entire nursing team to strive for the best in all that they do!” – Stephanie Huckaby, M.S.N., RN-BC, NEA-BC

“Dr. England is an inspirational ball of energy who dares others to keep up with her; she will pull you into her vortex, and pretty soon you are doing things you never thought possible, and the entire time she is cheering you on because she knew it was possible.” – Aziza Young, M.S.N., RN

“Dr. England is a fierce advocate for nursing as a profession and for nurses everywhere. She’s passionate about the work, the teams, and the patients, and she brings others along with her. Her energy, enthusiasm, and creativity are second to none, and she is sure to be missed as she moves into retirement!” – Chris McLarty, D.N.P., APRN, ACNP-BC

Victoria England’s passion, tenacity, and vision for the nursing profession will not be forgotten. We are all delighted as her impact continues to drive our expectations for the nursing practice. Her retirement may mean our not seeing or speaking to Dr. England every day, but her name will continue to ring through the halls of UT Southwestern as her life’s work is carried out. We wish Victoria and all of our retired nurses the best in wherever life takes them next.