Sanford Fargo nurses honored with prestigious nursing awards

May 19, 2023

Jessica Schindeldecker
Sanford Health Senior Communications Specialist
(701) 200-6080 /

FARGO, N.D. – Sanford Health Fargo Region nurses were recognized for their unwavering dedication to providing excellent care for their patients and communities during Sanford Health’s Nurses Week Recognition event this month. Each year, Sanford employees are encouraged to nominate their colleagues to be recognized for the remarkable work they do each day for their patients and communities.

“Every day, nurses experience immense challenges and responsibilities and have a profound impact on the lives of our patients, their families and our community,” said Theresa Larson, vice president of nursing and clinical services, Sanford Fargo. “I am incredibly proud of our nurses, and employees who work in partnership with our nurses, who have risen above these challenges, and demonstrate remarkable leadership skills, compassion and a relentless pursuit of excellence each and every day.”

The prestigious Evelyn Quigley Spirit of Nursing Award recognizes a nurse who has significantly contributed to the art of nursing throughout their career. Through strength of character, commitment and competence, the recipient is recognized as one who “lights a flame” for nursing practice, leaving a legacy for others by elevating professional nursing within Sanford and the community. Debra Hanson, BSN, RN, CCRN-K, program specialist received the award.

The Florence Nightingale Award recognizes nurses for outstanding involvement in the practice of the art and science of nursing as evidenced by strength of character, commitment and competence that has been recognized by their peers as an outstanding asset to the community, nursing profession and the Sanford Health organization. This year, Samantha Hansen, BSN, RN, Alisha Birchem, BSN, RN CPN, Tami Sarli, BSN, RN, Kelsey Cariveau, BSN, RN, OCN, Patti Kemmer, ADN, RN, Becky Thom, BSN, RN, Jenna Curtis, LPN, and Jennifer Jacobson, MSN, RN received the Award.

The Star of Nursing Award recognizes exceptional nurses in the first two years of their nursing practice. This is given to a nurse who has demonstrated passion for their newly chosen career through involvement in our nursing organization. Molly Bohn, BSN, RN, Bryce Benavides, BSN, RN, Sarah Kliner, BSN, RN, Lisa Olson, LPN and Sophia Sondreal, LPN received the award.

The Exemplary Professional Practice Award recognizes certified nurses who practice, collaborate, communicate and develop professionally to provide the highest quality care for patients served at Sanford. They exemplify professional accountability, teamwork and high ethical standards supporting a culture of safety and performance improvement. Caleb Behm, BSN, RN, SCRN, Amanda Dollinger, BSN, RN, CEN, CPEN and Hannah Osborn, BSN, RN, CPHON received the award.

The Friend of Nursing Award recognizes non-nurses who have supported the nursing profession and the professional practice of nursing, and recognizes the value of nursing to the patients we serve, the organization and our community. Willie Battle, lead security officer, Josh Arneson, supply chain operations manager, Beverly Suppa, unit secretary, Wendy Iwerks, child life specialist and Joan Becker, occupational therapist received the award.

The New Knowledge, Innovations & Improvements Award recognizes registered nurses who conscientiously integrate evidence-based practice, research and innovation into clinical and operational processes. This person explores the safest and best practices for their working environment. These individuals have created or led innovation and/or improvements with demonstrated outcomes. Amy Hall, BSN, RN, OCN received the award.

The Transformational Leadership Award recognizes registered nurses who demonstrate development of leaders, communicate expectations and evolve the departments to meet current and anticipated needs and strategic priorities. Logan Buchele, BSN, RN, Zachary Holm, BSN, RN, Alyia Kuehl, BSN, RN, Morgan Wiedmeier, BSN, RN and Dana Gentzkow, BSN, RN received the award.

The Structural Empowerment Award recognizes nurses who demonstrate professional engagement, development and commitment to community involvement. These nurses actively serve as members of shared governance councils and serve on committees and task forces that address excellence in patient care. Heather Mcintyre, ADN, RN received the award.

The Nursing Recognition event is an annual event for Sanford Health. This year’s event, held at the Delta Hotel in Fargo, North Dakota, honored 29 nurses and other health care professionals in eight categories. A record 717 nominations were submitted for 2023 honors, including 177 nominations for the Florence Nightingale Award.

National Nurses Week is acknowledged by health care organizations and the American Nurses Association annually.

About Sanford Health
Sanford Health, the largest rural health system in the United States, is dedicated to transforming the health care experience and providing access to world-class health care in America’s heartland. Headquartered in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, the organization serves more than one million patients and 220,000 health plan members across 250,000 square miles. The integrated health system has 47 medical centers, 2,800 Sanford physicians and advanced practice providers, 170 clinical investigators and research scientists, more than 200 Good Samaritan Society senior care locations and world clinics in 8 countries around the globe. Learn more about Sanford Health’s commitment to shaping the future of rural health care across the lifespan at or Sanford Health News.