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St. Luke's nurse leader honored by coworkers

by -

Ann Pithan

It was another busy morning on the surgery and oncology floor at UnityPoint Health - St. Luke’s.

Just as Anne Pithan, lead clinical practice expert, was washing her hands at the nurse’s station, several staff members and senior leaders surrounded the central hub to surprise Pithan with an award.

Not knowing what was going on, Pithan slowly joined the crowd and waited to see what was happening.

Then, St. Luke’s President and CEO, Lynn Wold, held up a plaque with her name on it for St. Luke’s Employee of the Month.

“What?” Pithan exclaimed. “I thought I was just about to be a part of a really great brainstorming session.”

The only one in the room shocked to see Pithan named Employee of the Month was Pithan herself.  In fact, the Employee of the Month Committee received stacks of nomination forms for Pithan.

“Anne has been highly recommended by her staff,” says Priscilla Stokes, St. Luke’s Vice President of Patient Care and Chief Nursing Officer.  “She always has a pleasant smile, willing hands and an open heart. Her knowledge of nursing practice is excellent and she is a natural teacher to novice and experienced nurses.”

In addition to her friendly smile that was mentioned repeatedly on the comments, there were also several words that kept reoccurring on multiple nomination forms:  helpful, flexible, friendly, cheerful, positive and knowledgeable.  

“She makes the floor a more enjoyable place to work. She has a contagious smile that makes everyone’s day better. She cares!” says fellow nurse Shelli Van Roekel.

As the St. Luke’s Employee of the Month for February, Pithan received a special watch from Greenberg’s Jewelers, her own premium parking space, gift cards to the St. Luke’s Glass Apple Gift Shop, The Parkview Café and a gift certificate to be used at an area restaurant. She will also have the chance to be voted as St. Luke’s Employee of the Year for 2016. That comes with a paid vacation.

All of gifts took some convincing for Pithan to accept as she kept humbly saying “no, I don’t deserve this, they do” while pointing to fellow staff members during the award ceremony.

“I love the people that I work with,” says Pithan. “My fellow co-workers are what make my job so great!”

View video here.