11 Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses Recognized with 2016 American Psychiatric Nurses Association Annual Awards

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Eleven nurses recognized for excellence in psychiatric-mental health nursing and wellness promotion.

Their commitment to providing care to individuals with mental health needs encourages us all to be at our best.

The American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA) is thrilled to announce the recipients of the 2016 APNA Annual Awards. Each year, extraordinary psychiatric-mental health nurses are nominated for consideration by their colleagues and chosen by a committee of their peers. APNA is pleased to announce the eleven nurses who have been selected because of their diligence in advancing psychiatric-mental health nursing through leadership, dedication, and vision. These recipients will be honored in person at the APNA 30th Annual Conference this October, in Hartford, Connecticut.

“Psychiatric-mental health nurses are natural leaders in healthcare, and the APNA Annual Awards are our opportunity to celebrate their accomplishments,” said APNA President Mary Ann Nihart, MA, APRN, PMHCNS-BC, PMHNP-BC. “Their commitment to providing care to individuals with mental health needs encourages us all to be at our best.”

Barbara Jones Warren, PhD, RN, PMHCNS-BC, FNAP, FAAN, is the recipient of the 2016 APNA Psychiatric Nurse of the Year Award. This award recognizes a nurse who demonstrates vision, perseverance, and dedication in the delivery of mental health nursing care to the community. Throughout her career of more than 20 years, Warren has advocated both for vulnerable populations and for nurses, with work focusing on enhancing standards of cultural competence and developing leadership skills in both student and practicing nurses. Warren currently serves as a Clinical Professor at The Ohio State University (OSU) College of Nursing and as a therapist. In her role at OSU, Warren developed the Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner online program and served as interim program director. Her commitment to this program saw a 100% pass rate for its students. "Dr. Warren’s dedication to improving the mental health of the state is reflected in her resolve to offer a quality program that prepares students to be successful clinicians," says Bernadette Melnyk. "[Her] research activities have continued to evolve to include the importance of integrating mental and physical healthcare services." Warren also developed and published the first model for assessing depression in middle class African American women. Her nominator, Jeanne Clement, says, "[Warren's] willingness to take risks in changing long established practices helped nursing administrators...work toward development of recovery-based interventions." Warren will be presented with the Psychiatric Nurse of the Year Award at the APNA 30th Annual Conference in Hartford.

Julie Carbray, PhD, FMHNP-BC, PMHCS-BC, has been awarded the 2016 APNA Award for Distinguished Service in recognition of her exceptional and meritorious service to APNA. Carbray has been a member of APNA for more than 25 years, during which time she has served on a variety of committees, coauthored a publication on advanced practice , and served on the APNA Board of Directors. Carbray has chaired the planning committee for the Clinical Psychopharmacology Institute (CPI), APNA’s annual psychopharmacology conference, since 2011. In addition, Carbray has served as the Chair of the Child and Adolescent Council since 2013. "Dr. Carbray is renowned for her innovative work as a child psychiatric nurse clinician, program manager, nurse researcher/scholar, and clinical educator in implementation research," says Janet York in her nomination, citing Carbray's work with the Pediatric Mood Disorders Clinic at the University Of Illinois Institute Of Juvenile Research in Chicago. "The work of Dr. Carbray and her interprofessional team addresses a population need, youth with bipolar disorder.... The program is considered an exemplary clinical and empirical model with strong evidence of effectiveness, national funding, and replication in five countries."

In addition to Warren and Carbray, nine psychiatric-mental health nurses are being honored with APNA Annual Awards for their commitment to excellence in specific aspects of psychiatric-mental health nursing: (Quotations taken from each recipient's nomination letter)

Mindy Cohen, RN, APN, CGP, DRCC, CARN: Award for Excellence in Practice – APRN
"Mindy’s group members develop resilience through her efforts, which allows them to successfully manage their illness with optimism and empowerment."

Heikie Barnette, RN-PMH, Pueblo, CO: Award for Excellence in Practice – RN
"Ms. Barnett has a deep concern and passion for level of psychiatric nursing care of the seriously mentally ill and if that care contributes to their recovery."

Kathryn Johnson, MSN, PMHCNS-BC, PMHNP-BC, Santa Cruz, CA: Award for Excellence in Leadership – APRN
"Kathy Johnson is an exceptional leader...dedicated to our profession, organization, and making a difference in how care is delivered to those impacted by mental health issues."

Kristen Kichefski, MSN, MBA, RN-BC, Providence, RI: Award for Excellence in Leadership – RN
"Over the last two years, Kristen has proven herself to be an innovative thinker, with the energy and openness to new ideas."

Joy Lauerer, DNP, PMHCNS-BC, RN, Charleston, SC: Award for Excellence in Education
“Dr. Lauerer is a wealth of knowledge... Her teaching methods foster critical thinking and creativity, and encourage self-directed learning and problem solving.”

Janice Goodman, PhD, PMHCNS-BC, Charlestown, MA: Award for Excellence in Research
"Dr. Goodman’s research is an exemplar of the holistic, individual and family focused, prevention-intervention targeted research priorities."

Jeannine Loucks, MSN, RN-BC PMH, Orange, CA: Award for Media
"Jeannine Loucks has taken collaboration with first responders to an added height by developing training videos for police departments demonstrating how to work with people with psychiatric and emotional disorders in the field."

Elaine McGrane Olmstead RN MS, PMHCNS, Acton, MA: Award for Innovation – Individual
"Elaine has held true to the ideals of community health as she joins forces with programs established to aid people at critical stages in their lives and within community based organizations."

APNA Colorado Chapter: Award for Innovation – Chapter
"The Chapter's organization and activities in this effort is an exemplars of the principles of APNA at the highest level."

The APNA 30th Annual Conference will be held the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Connecticut, October 19-22. In addition to honoring this year's awards recipients, the APNA Annual Conference will feature more than 3 days of networking and over 100 continuing education sessions for psychiatric nurses, including RNs and advanced practice nurses.
The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is a national professional membership organization of more than 10,500 members committed to the specialty practice of psychiatric-mental health nursing and wellness promotion, prevention of mental health problems, and the care and treatment of persons with psychiatric disorders. APNA’s membership is inclusive of all psychiatric-mental health registered nurses, including associate degree, baccalaureate, advanced practice (comprised of clinical nurse specialists and psychiatric nurse practitioners), and nurse scientists and academicians (PhD). APNA serves as a resource for psychiatric-mental health nurses to engage in networking, education, and the dissemination of research.

The American Psychiatric Nurses Association is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation.

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