Meet your Michigan Medicine MVPs

February 15, 2017  //  FOUND IN: Our Employees,

Last week, Headlines asked you to nominate colleagues who make remarkable contributions to the organization. The overwhelming response proves that Michigan Medicine is full of dedicated and valuable employees intent on delivering world-class services on a daily basis.

Congratulations to the following nominees, who were randomly selected to win fantastic prizes, such as movie passes and Michigan Medicine swag! All other nominees are listed at the bottom of the story.

Helen Tamer, Pharm.D., research pharmacy

Helen has been a reliable superstar colleague time and time again. What makes her so special is that she doesn’t see any situation in simply black or white; Helen’s extensive knowledge base and experience allows her to make needed adjustments to fit the needs of clinical researchers and, most importantly, the patients enrolled in clinical trials.

On top of her professional abilities, she is a kind, intelligent and genuine person. If ever metaphorically facing a 25-point deficit with a ticking clock and the whole world watching — it helps to have a teammate like Dr. Tamer on your side.

Philip Menard, STEPS program

The success of the outpatient pediatric STEPS program for children on the autism spectrum would not be possible without Philip’s dedication and hard work. Since the program’s inception, he has helped with fundraising, designing treatment modules, ordering equipment and materials, creating information packets to send to participating families, and creating a database to measure patient success.

The program began with two groups of three children each and has now grown to 24 children per semester at two locations. Philip’s endless work has made that growth possible.

Jackie Truscott, RN, Neuro ICU

Jackie is a rising star. She came to the Neuro ICU as a new graduate, but over the past year, she has grown tremendously. She comes to work each day with a smile on her face, is always flexible with her assignment and owns her nursing practice.

Most importantly, Jackie is open to new ideas and adapts well to change, while never compromising teamwork or an attention to detail. The Neuro ICU is fortunate to have Jackie on board!

Jill Gerber, clinical manager, pediatric rehab clinic

Jill manages a multidisciplinary clinic that includes PT/OT, speech therapy, neuromuscular programs and more. Let’s just say there isn’t a dull moment around here!

Jill has a way of managing a place that can be chaotic in a positive and low-stress manner — showing patients and families that the clinic can be fun! She also creates a stellar work environment for her employees. Staff members want to come to work and work hard for her — because we know she will work hard for us.

Brian Wu, administration, Department of Internal Medicine

Brian’s main responsibility is getting mail from various locations (some off-site) within the department. Brian is always pleasant to work with, dependable and punctual. He has a positive attitude toward his work and has often accepted additional responsibilities without complaining.

Further, Brian often handles documents of a sensitive nature and no one ever has to worry about such documents being misplaced or delivered to incorrect locations — he perseveres through inclement weather to ensure the departmental mail is picked up and delivered promptly. Brian is certainly an asset to the department.

David Goldsmith Cohen, M.D., cardiology fellow

David displays exceptional care, compassion and empathy for patients, family and staff. He can be seen here in the wee hours of the night meeting with family members to provide insight and comfort — and his warm bedside manner quickly builds the necessary rapport with both patients and family. Dr. Cohen also treats nursing staff, environmental services staff, physical therapy and fellow doctors with the utmost respect as if they were his own family.

Cindy Czajkowski, adult suite clinic lead, Northville Health Center

Cindy goes out of her way to make every employee feel like a valuable member of the team. It doesn’t matter what somebody brings to the table, he or she will be respected and accepted.

Cindy is also an incredibly involved supervisor, taking notice of what her team is doing and what they need to complete the job on a daily basis. She takes pride in her department and that pride spreads to the rest of the team and, in the end, our patients.

Rafael Bremer, administrative assistant, Department of Radiology

Rafael does it all … and always with a smile and amazing attitude! He is great carrying out his normal duties and loves to tackle new challenges with gusto.

He has an artistic and design flair and uses that in many ways to help the department look good. His unfailingly positive energy gives a lift to all who see him. Rafael deserves kudos for not only what he does, but how he does it … with excellence, style and happiness!

Team nomination: Clinical psychometry team, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation 

Pamela Schnur, Hardeesh Johal-Smith, Sarah Letang, Maria Okon, Alicia Weisensel, Brooke Williams

Clinical psychometry is a challenging and often thankless clinical role and our team is comprised of the best providers around. Our clinicians work with pediatric, adolescent, adult and geriatric patients, moving deftly across all of these ages/clinical populations.

Their job involves conducting challenging and lengthy cognitive tests with patients who have a variety of medical conditions ranging from ADHD and learning disabilities to severe traumatic brain injuries, stroke, brain tumors and seizure disorders. The team goes to great lengths to get whatever clinical information they can to help create the optimal treatment plan for every patient.

Other Michigan Medicine MVPs:

  • Robert Adwere-Boaman, trainer, Women’s Birth Center
  • Anthony Barden, Health Information Technology & Services
  • Brenda Bedolla, BHA call center
  • Benjamin Borden, administrative manager, Environmental Services
  • Colleen Buda, program director, adult bariatric surgery
  • Justina Cancel, medical assistant lead, outpatient psychology
  • Mark Cichocki, nurse, Infectious Disease Clinic
  • Jana Dejonghe, Cancer Center call center
  • Sharon Dickinson, clinical nurse specialist, SICU
  • Bonnie Durbin, radiation therapist
  • Bruce Edwards, Au.D., Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery
  • Jim Evans, orthotics and prosthetics
  • Meghan Fix, clerical staff, Briarwood Building 2
  • Marty Frick, Department of Internal Medicine
  • Cheryl Glaser, Division of Rheumatology
  • Missy Gramer, Brighton MLabs blood drawing lab
  • Sandi Godbey, wound care/ostemy team, MedEQUIP
  • Sandy Goel, manager, specialty pharmacy services
  • Elisa Guron, Neurosurgical ICU
  • Patty Harvey, data manager, Office of Clinical Trials
  • Hayley Hoffman, research lab tech lead
  • Pat Holden, executive assistant, IHPI
  • Kristen Krieger, M.D., internal medicine
  • Anna Krzak, physician’s assistant, Burn ICU
  • Mahathny Kuchibhatla, Health Information Technology & Services
  • Rakesh Latchamsetty, electrophysiology
  • Herman Love, clerical lead, CVC
  • Roberta Mackniesh, Milk Room
  • Erin Miller, Department of Psychiatry
  • Donna Monson-Waldrup, OPCD/Facilities coding group
  • Valerie Oliver, patient care assistant, EAA general medicine
  • Jennifer Pardo, MiPart
  • Shahrzad Patterson, general surgery
  • Laura Pratt, Back & Pain Center
  • Matt Ralls, M.D., fellow, pediatric surgery
  • Denise Gooden Richmond, clinic manager, radiation oncology
  • Doug Riddle, outpatient referral coordinator, Department of Radiology
  • Alfreda Rooks, director, Department of Community Health Services
  • Donna Sackett, Michigan Bowel Control Program
  • Margaret Tait, supervisor, Trauma Burn Resource Center
  • Errick Thomas, patient services associate, CVC
  • Rebekah Turner, UH operating rooms front desk clerk
  • Liz Vasher, internal medicine
  • Nikki Vladimerou, anesthesia
  • Stephanie Weaver, panel manager, Brighton Health Center
  • Karla Willson, nurse practitioner, pediatric kidney transplant
  • Denise Winiarski, associate general counsel
  • Akeiya Woods, orthotics and prosthetics call center
  • Jody Wright, pre-kidney transplant

Team MVPs:

  • Adult Cancer Center Infusion team
  • Administrative assistants, Ambulatory Care Services
  • Nurses, pediatric surgery clinic
  • Nurses, preventative cardiology
  • Pediatric GI-ICN team
  • Reimbursement Department staff
  • Transplant/Specialty Pharmacy team