THA Honors 21 Award Recipients at Annual Meeting

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Nov. 10, 2014) –The Tennessee Hospital Association (THA) honored 21 individuals during its 76th annual meeting at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center last week.

A complete listing of award categories, recipients and biographical information is available here.

Distinguished Service Award

John Marshall, chief executive officer, TriStar Horizon Medical Center, Dickson, was the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award, the highest honor given by THA. The award recognizes leadership and service by an individual member to THA throughout his or her career, in addition to achievements and contributions to the healthcare industry.

Marshall was recognized for his leadership and commitment to his hospital and community and participation in THA. He has dedicated more than 40 years of service to the healthcare industry.

Healthcare Hero

The Healthcare Hero Award recognizes individuals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty.

Mia Sharp, registered nurse, pediatric emergency department and pediatric ground transport team, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, Nashville, was honored for her efforts to provide emergency care to victims of a mass shooting in Aurora, Co., while she was on vacation.

Meritorious Service Awards

Meritorious service awards recognize leadership and service by individuals in support of their hospitals and health systems.

Chief Executive Officer

Stephen Reynolds, president emeritus and senior consultant, Baptist Memorial Health Care, Memphis, was honored for his 43-year career in health care at the national, regional and local levels. While he retired earlier this year, Reynolds spent his entire career in leadership positions at Baptist Memorial Health Care and served the last two decades as president and CEO. He oversaw a far-reaching healthcare system that includes 14 hospitals in Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas, as well as minor medical centers, home care and hospice programs, behavioral health centers, clinics and a number of other entities.

Senior Executive

Brennan Francois, chief executive officer, Parkridge Valley Hospital, Chattanooga, was recognized for several initiatives that are making a difference in the lives of individuals with substance abuse and mental health issues in the Chattanooga area. He has invested significant time and effort in helping create two major initiatives that increase access to behavioral health treatment for those with mental illness and give law enforcement the intervention skills they need to assist individuals with behavioral health issues.

Board Members

Arthur “Buddy” Scott, board chairman, Wellmont Health System, Kingsport, was honored for his 32 years of service on the Wellmont Holston Valley Medical Center board of directors and 14 years on the Wellmont Health System board of directors.

Curtis Mansfield, board member, West Tennessee Healthcare, Jackson, was honored for his contributions while serving on the West Tennessee Healthcare board of trustees for the past 17 years.

Medical Staff

William Schaffner, M.D., professor of preventative medicine and medicine (infectious diseases), Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, was honored for his dedication to education and research of infectious diseases and public health.

Peter Grubb, M.D., medical director, Tennessee Initiative for Perinatal Quality Care, and associate professor of pediatrics, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospitals at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, was recognized for his efforts to improve healthcare delivery in Tennessee through his work with the Tennessee Initiative for Perinatal Quality Care (TIPQC).


Dorothy Sowell, volunteer, Maury Regional Medical Center, Columbia, a charter member of the auxiliary at Maury Regional Medical Center in 1953 who continues to serve today at the age of 91, was honored for her lifelong volunteer activities at the hospital.

Robert Woodruff, Ph.D., volunteer cuddler, East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, Knoxville, was honored for his exemplary volunteer service focusing on the needs of at-risk babies diagnosed with neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS).

Diversity Champion Award

This award recognizes leaders who have made outstanding contributions in fostering leadership, workplace diversity and inclusion, and demonstrated his or her commitment to a diverse workforce.

Arie Nettles, Ph.D., associate professor, clinical pediatrics, and director of the Office of Inclusion and Health Equity, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, Nashville, was honored for her leadership and the formation of the Office of Inclusion and Health Equity (OIHE) at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

Cynthia Allen, system community involvement manager, Baptist Memorial Health Care, Memphis, was recognized for her efforts to increase the diversity of the workforce at Baptist Memorial Health Care and reach across the organization to recruit volunteers and resources to help implement community activities.

Patient Safety Leadership Award

This award recognizes an individual who has taken extraordinary and innovative steps to make patient safety and quality a top priority in their organization.

George Testerman, M.D., trauma surgeon, Wellmont Holston Valley Medical Center, Kingsport, was honored for his contributions to traumatic injury prevention and treatment at Wellmont Holston Valley Medical Center.

Nurse of Distinction Awards

The Nurse of Distinction Awards recognize outstanding contributions to nursing by registered nurses employed at a THA member hospital or health system.

Executive Nurse of Distinction Awards

Robin Steaban, chief nursing officer, Vanderbilt University Hospitals and Clinics, Nashville, was honored for being an organization leader, an ambassador for the profession of nursing and a change agent for the future of health care.

Phyllis Dossett, director of clinical services, Hancock County Hospital,

Sneedville, was recognized for her leadership and dedication to improving the health care in her community.

Clinical Nurse of Distinction Awards

Jill Kinch, advanced pediatric nurse team manager, Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, Nashville, was honored for her exemplary work as an advanced practice nurse.

Bonnie Miller, perinatal patient safety nurse coordinator, Regional One Health, Memphis, was recognized for her consistency and compassion while serving as the perinatal patient safety nurse coordinator.

American College of Healthcare Executives Awards

Senior Level Awards

Dennis Wolford, administrator, Macon County General Hospital, Lafayette, is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, has served on the THA board of directors and currently serves on the Tennessee Rural Partnership board of directors.

Joe Winick, senior vice president, planning and business development, Erlanger Health System, Chattanooga, is a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives and has served on the East Tennessee Health Care Executives board.

Early Careerist Awards

Nicole Jones, business manager, Le Bonheur Pediatrics, Memphis, serves as the membership and advancement chair for the Mid-South American College of Healthcare Executives, and is the scholarship and awards co-chair for the National Association of Health Services Executives.

Michael Hatmaker, vice president of support services, LeConte Medical Center, Sevierville, and administrator, Fort Sanders Sevier Nursing Home, Sevierville, currently serves as president-elect for the East Tennessee Healthcare Executives affiliation.