About BCEN’s Awards Program
Every year, BCEN shines a national spotlight on exemplary nurses and organizations who are committed to specialty certification and excellence in emergency nursing and who promote and advance the value of board certification.
- BCEN’s Distinguished Awards recognize one nurse exemplifying excellence in each of five emergency nursing specialties: emergency (CEN®), pediatric emergency (CPEN®), flight (CFRN®), critical care ground transport (CTRN®), and trauma (TCRN®).
- BCEN’s National Certification Champion Award recognizes organizations in three categories: Small Healthcare Organization, Large Healthcare Organization and Healthcare System.
Help us recognize excellence, achievement and impact in emergency nursing certification. Nominate a colleague, nominate yourself, or nominate your workplace!
Eligibility requirements, judging criteria, nomination forms and deadlines, award dates, and previous winners are provided below.
BCEN’s Distinguished Awards recognize board certified emergency nurses who exemplify excellence in their emergency nursing specialty practice and who have demonstrated exceptional commitment to advocating for, supporting and promoting board certification for emergency nurses.
Please nominate an individual who demonstrates:
- Excellence in pursuing advanced knowledge with one of BCEN’s certifications
- Achievement in promoting and advocating for BCEN emergency nursing certification
- Impact of certification on the nursing profession and patient outcomes
Any nurse holding a current CEN (Certified Emergency Nurse), CFRN (Certified Flight Registered Nurse), CPEN (Certified Pediatric Emergency Nurse), CTRN (Certified Transport Registered Nurse) or TCRN (Trauma Certified Registered Nurse) certification is eligible to be nominated or nominate themselves.*
To be eligible for a Distinguished Award, nominees must:
- Hold the specific BCEN certification that is being honored
- Be currently practicing in that specialty emergency nursing area
*Individuals serving on BCEN’s board of directors or exam construction and review committees (ECRCs), or who are engaged in revenue-generating businesses or activities associated with any BCEN certification program, product or service (including providers of certification prep materials and/or review courses), are not eligible.
Nomination submission requirements:
You will be asked to provide the following information about your nominee:
- Their name, email address, title and affiliation/place of employment
- The certification award for which they’re being nominated (CEN, CFRN, CPEN, CTRN or TCRN)
- How you believe they exemplify the clinical excellence and professionalism of a BCEN-certified nurse in this specialty
Following your submission, nominees will be asked to submit the following:
- At least 3 ways you have succeeded in advocating for certification and supporting other nurses to earn and maintain board certification in this specialty.
- A current CV
- A current headshot
- Up to 3 additional supporting items may be uploaded, but are not required.
2023 Distinguished Award winners will receive a one-year all-access pass to the award-winning BCEN Learn continuing education platform (valued at $2,500) and be honored at a special workplace celebration.
Distinguished CEN Award
- Honors a Certified Emergency Nurse (CEN)
Calee MuldrowBSN, RN, CEN Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, Dallas, TX
At Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, Calee is a fierce advocate for nurses and her patients. She encourages all nurses to pursue their CEN because she believes that certification increases the confidence, skill and knowledge of emergency nurses delivering care. Due to her advocacy, she has increased the certification rates for the ED to 47% over the past two years, including three new graduate nurses she has onboarded and mentored.
After earning her CEN 2.5 years into her nursing career, Calee takes pride in knowing that she plays a part in challenging her colleagues to earn a certification—not only for themselves but also to improve their overall knowledge and the care they provide their patients every day. She believes that if a nurse continues to challenge themselves and further their education, this can significantly reduce the risk of burnout. Calee believes that recognition and positive reinforcement are the keys to motivating others, and she acts on this belief in spades.
Read more about Calee in our Meet the Winner series.
Nicholas Jazdzewski, BSN, RN, CENFroedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Froedtert Hospital, Milwaukee, WI
Heidi Cote, BSN, RN, CEN, CPEN
Maine Medical Center, Portland, ME
Jude Lark, BSN, RN, CEN, CCRN
Overlook Medical Center, Summit, NJ
Heather Linsalata, BSN, RN, CEN
University Hospital, Newark, NJ
Wilmar Flores, BSN, RN, CEN
La Jolla Emergency Department, University of California, San Diego (UCSD) Health Systems, La Jolla, CA
Kathy Ingersoll, BSN, RN, CEN
Harford Memorial Hospital, Havre de Grace, MD
Kara Bauman, MN, RN, CEN, CPEN, TCRN
Inova Fairfax Medical Campus, Falls Church, VA
Diane Branson, RN, CEN, OR-SANE-A
Salem Hospital, Albany, OR
Distinguished CPEN Award
- Honors a Certified Pediatric Emergency Nurse (CPEN).
Dawn TascheBSN, RN, CPEN Aurora Health Care in Sheboygan County, Sheboygan, WI
The recognized “pediatric champion” in her emergency department, Dawn’s leadership, collaboration and advocacy for helping nurses develop advanced pediatric skills has increased the number of CPENs in her ED and paved the way for Aurora Health Care in Sheboygan County to be recognized for emergency pediatric care by the Wisconsin Emergency Medical Services for Children’s Pediatric Emergency Department. In all her roles—skilled ED nurse, mentor, preceptor and leader—she exhibits passion, resiliency and compassion.
Dawn believes it’s important to get more nurses to be certified in pediatric emergency nursing to help build confidence in themselves when taking care of pediatric patients. CPEN certification has helped her and her colleagues build knowledge about the unique needs of pediatric patients and how each development stage of life impacts their ability to deliver the best possible emergency care to pediatric patients and their families. As Dawn says: “It is my personality to encourage others to keep striving in anything they do, not just in nursing but in life. Knowledge truly is power.”
Read more about Dawn in our Meet the Winner series.
Jessica Evins, BSN, RN, CPENin NewYork-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, New York, NY
Lisa Chambers, MSN, MPS, RN, CEN, CPEN, TCRN
CHOC Children’s Hospital, Orange, CA
Cara Szeglin, BSN, RN, CPEN
New York-Presbyterial Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital, New York, NY
Jodi Cregger, RN, MICT, CEN, CFRN, CPEN
LifeTeam, Hutchinson Regional Medical Center, Hutchinson, KS
Brian Johnson, RN, CEN, CPEN
NorthBay Medical Center, Fairfield, CA
Kristen Cline, BSN, RN, CEN, CPEN, SANE-A
Sanford AirMed, Sioux Falls, SD
Distinguished CFRN Award
- Award honors a Certified Flight Registered Nurse (CFRN).
Stacey DockMSN, RN, CFRN LifeFlight Eagle, Kansas City, MO
A flight nurse since 1994, Stacey first earned her CFRN in 1995 while working for one of the very first U.S. civilian air medical programs. She believed then, and still believes now, that certification “shows yourself and others that you are knowledgeable and dedicated to your craft.” For 10 years, she was LifeFlight Eagle’s Clinical Services Manager, during which time she earned her MSN to better serve her program and crew. She recently went back to full-time flight nursing—which has always been a passion and purpose in her adult life—and where she’s mentoring a whole new generation of flight nurses.
In 2012, she spearheaded a policy that required CFRN certification for all LifeFlight Eagle transport nurses within 2 years of hire. She has developed and supported ongoing CE education and exam prep resources, even paying out of her own personal funds to support bases and staff pursuing certification and recertification. Today, LifeFlight Eagle provides those resources to all staff at no cost.
Read more about Stacey in our Meet the Winner series.
Abigail Harvey, BSN, RN, CFRN, NREMT-PLutheran Health Network, Fort Wayne, Indiana
Kevin Kissner, MSN, RN, CEN, CFRN
VCU Health & Virginia State Police Med-Flight I , Richmond, VA
Tonya Barnard, BSN, RN, CEN, CFRN, CPEN, CTRN, TCRN, CCRN, EMT-B
Pafford Air One, Orlando, FL
Carlos Tavarez, RN, CEN, CFRN, CTRN, TCRN, NREMT-P, FP-D, CCEMT-P, EMT-T, WEMT
Orlando Health Orlando Regional Medical Center, Orlando, FL
Teresa Elder, MEd, BSN, RN, CFRN
Flight for LIfe Colorado, St. Anthony Hospital, Denver, CO
Bambi Pish-Derr, DNP, CFRN, CCRN
Angel MedFlight, Scottsdale, AZ
Mick McCallum, TNS, RN, CFRN, CCRN, EMT-P, FP-C, CMTE
Distinguished CTRN Award
- Award honors a Certified Transport Registered Nurse (CTRN).
George OlschewskiBSN, RN, CFRN, CTRN, CEN, TCRN Hackensack University Medical Center Specialty Care Transport Unit, Hackensack, NJ
A critical care transport and mobile intensive care nurse since 2004, George says he “truly arrived in the specialty once I earned the CTRN.” Based on his view that critical care transport is a high-risk procedure and also the most autonomous nursing field, he believes with that autonomy comes great responsibility.
As George says, “things can go sideways very quickly.” That’s why he pushes himself and his nurse, EMT and paramedic colleagues alike at Hackensack University Medical Center, a Level II Trauma Center, to learn and advance and achieve board certification.
Hackensack University Medical Center and its network are huge proponents of certification, and George is a big part of that impetus. Supporting nurses to be their best through certification, he helps set higher standards for his team and program so they can provide the best care possible as they transport the sickest of the sick. George is also pursuing a master’s degree in nursing administration and is involved in multiple professional associations where he helps develop continuing education content and updates CCT specialty professional standards.
Read more about George in our Meet the Winner series.
Mackenzie Alexander, BSN, RN, CEN, TCRN, CTRN, CPENHarris Health System, Houston, Texas
Kimberly Lacina, MSN, ARNP-C, CTRN, CEN, EMT-P
Sunstar Paramedics, Largo, FL
Distinguished TCRN Award
- Honors a Trauma Certified Registered Nurse (TCRN).
Jordan TyczkaMSN, RN, CEN, TCRN Inova Loudoun Hospital, Leesburg, VA
Jordan exemplifies trauma nursing excellence while she advocates for and supports nurses practicing across the entire trauma continuum in many ways. When Jordan started at Inova Loudoun 5 years ago, the trauma program was brand new and there were 2 TCRNs—and Jordan was not yet TCRN certified. (And in fact, she didn’t pass on her first attempt.) Since then, over 80 nurses have earned their TCRN and another 50 intend to sit for the TCRN in 2023.
Her monthly TCRN exam prep zoom lectures are viewed by the 500+ nurses in her hospital as well as nurses in the other 4 Inova system hospitals. She also developed a “Trauma Escape Room” which educates team members and helps them retain what they learn during a jam-packed, exciting 90 minutes. Open to nurses on every unit, participants use their nursing knowledge to solve crossword puzzles, match clinical presentations with traumatic injuries, and navigate live simulated patient scenarios.
Read more about Jordan in our Meet the Winners series.
Shayna Stevens, BSN, RN, TCRNTexas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano, Plano, TX
Julie Donnelly, MSN, RN, TCRN
Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Philadelphia, PA
Lt. Mariah Pruett, NC, BSN, RN, CEN, CFRN, CPEN, TCRN, CCRN
David Grant USAF Medical Center, Fairfield, CA
Travis Beebe-Woodard, BSN, RN, CEN, CPEN, TCRN
University of Vermont Medical Center, Burlington, VT
June Guadalupe, MSN, BSN, RN, CEN, CCRN, CMC, CNRN, TCRN
R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD
Andrea Wright, MSN, RN, CEN, TCRN
Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital Level I Trauma Center, Roanoke, VA
National Certification Champion Award
The 2023 NCC Award nomination window is now closed. Stay tuned for winner updates!
BCEN’s National Certification Champion Award recognizes health care facilities and health systems that:
- Exemplify excellence in supporting emergency RNs who pursue BCEN certifications
- Show achievement in designing and implementing effective and innovative practices and programs that encourage, support, and recognize emergency nursing specialty certification
- Demonstrate the impact of a board certified emergency nurse workforce on patient, nurse and organizational outcomes
One national winner will be recognized in each of the following categories:
- Small Healthcare Organization: single hospital emergency department, trauma program or freestanding emergency center with less than 30,000 visits per year, or a single critical care ground transport and/or flight base
- Large Healthcare Organization: single hospital emergency department, trauma program or freestanding emergency center with more than 30,000 visits per year
- Healthcare System: a group or system of 2 or more hospital emergency departments, trauma programs, freestanding emergency centers, or critical care ground transport and/or flight bases
To be eligible for the National Certification Champion Award, a facility or organization must:
- Currently employ BCEN-certified emergency, transport and/or trauma nurses
- Be actively engaged in supporting their nurses in obtaining and maintaining one or more of BCEN’s certifications
- Serve as a model for advancing board certification for the nursing profession
In order to be considered, nominations must include the following:
- Completed nomination form
- Two (2) letters of reference from individuals with relevant professional positions or qualifications
Centura HealthCentennial, CO
How does Centura Health instill valuation of specialty certification across an entire health system?
It starts at the executive leadership level, where a belief that professional board certification is the “highest indicator of professionalism in the nursing field” that “helps advance the profession by recognizing and rewarding individuals for their clinical expertise and experience” is put into action every day and every shift.
At Centura, committing significant resources to support and encourage associates to obtain and maintain certification includes funded exam prep, paid time off to take the exam, reimbursement for successful certification, CE credit and certification differential with wages. Recognition on the units, in daily huddles and system wide. Consideration of certification within the career ladder, promotions and extensive ongoing special projects. The result is a 44% certification rate.
Inspiring Confidence in Patients: Certified nurses at Centura have a large ‘certified nurse’ sign added to their badge hanger for recognition, which patients comment conveys confidence to them and their care.
The Bottom Line: “Our certified nurses exceed expectations.”
Life Link III
Northeast Georgia Health System
UCHealth Emergency Care
Fort Collins, CO
Large Healthcare Organization
Harris Health Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital Emergency CenterHouston, TX
How did Harris Health LBJ Emergency Center make valuing emergency, trauma and transport certification part of its culture?
Bonuses, free prep resources and onsite review courses with paid time off, and advancement opportunities, for sure. Where LBJ EC really impresses and achieves is through integration and interdisciplinary participation, including: Full engagement from clinical resources nurses and educators. Frequent impromptu “shock talks” hosted by MDs, bedside nurses and ancillary departments. Specialty certification required for clinical ladder advancement and promotions, required for nursing leadership within two years of their promotion, and strongly preferred for all leadership candidate new hires.
Certified Success Worth Noting: Home to the only adult ground transport specialty team in greater Houston (which was formed by its own emergency nurses), LBJ EC requires all nurses to have at least one BCEN certification to join the team and three certifications (CEN or TCRN, plus CFRN and CTRN) within two years. LBJ EC directly links the interdisciplinary specialty team and the certifications they hold to positive patient outcomes.
The Bottom Line: “In February 2022, our patient satisfaction scores reached an all-time high score which was >90th percentile of all EDs within the same category.”
Yale New Haven Hospital
New Haven, CT
University of Vermont Health Network – Champlain Valley Physicians Hospital
Oak Hill Hospital
Chilton Medical Center
Pompton Plains, NJ
Houston Methodist Hospital System
Avera McKennan Hospital Emergency Department
Sioux Falls, SD
Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital EMTC
Small Healthcare Organization
Baylor Scott & White Medical Center – Centennial Emergency DepartmentFrisco, TX
What fueled the Baylor Scott & White – Centennial Emergency Department’s remarkable two-year jump in certification rates from 6% to 56.5%?
Free exam prep materials, free onsite review courses with paid time off to attend, study groups, daily huddle review questions, and voucher-covered exam fees. Executive team-attended personal celebrations for every newly certified nurse. Recertification supported by a wide range of funded CE options and a renewal bonus.
The ROI: Increased nurse engagement and satisfaction. Certified nurses can level-up the clinical ladder. Nurse-led process and research initiatives leading to significant quality improvements. A top Press Ganey score and trauma and stroke center zero-deficiency surveys.
The Bottom Line: “As a facility, the care delivery to our patients has continued to improve in alignment with our certification rates.”
Childress Regional Medical Center
Rush Foundation Hospital ED
USC Verdugo Hills Hospital
IU Health Saxony Hospital Emergency Department
As part of our commitment to helping current and aspiring emergency, trauma and transport nurses achieve all of their professional development goals, BCEN donates $155,000 each year to fund approximately 50 academic nursing scholarships.
Since 2012, BCEN has funded over $1.3 million in scholarships.
- Donates to established scholarship programs to fund undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral scholarships for BCEN-certified nurses
- Funds paramedic-to-BSN scholarships for paramedics committed to becoming BCEN-certified RNs
- Donates $10,000 to ASTNA’s bereavement fund
To apply for BCEN-funded academic scholarships, please visit our partner organizations’ websites here:
- Emergency Nurses Association (ENA)
- Society of Trauma Nurses (STN)
- Air & Surface Transport Nurses Association (ASTNA)
- Foundation of the National Student Nurses’ Association (FNSNA)
Scholarship applications typically open early in the calendar year for ENA and STN. FNSNA applications open in September, and ASTNA applications typically open by November.. **Please check each organization’s website for current year application deadlines and complete eligibility information.
Current Year Scholarship Contributions and Most Recent Awardees:
ENA Foundation Scholarship - $50,000
BCEN Doctoral Scholarship Recipients
- Ashley Mendonza, CEN, TCRN, Florida
- Lena Sutch, CEN, Maryland
- Rebecca VanStanton, CEN, CPEN, TCRN, Michigan
BCEN Master’s Scholarship Recipients
- Meghan Gamble, CEN, North Carolina
- Vaughn Kelly, CEN, Alaska
- Holly Polmateer, CEN, Michigan
- Christopher Rutland, CEN, CPEN, TCRN, Mississippi
- Laura Stasila, CEN, TCRN, Indiana
BCEN Undergraduate Scholarship Recipients
- Brandon Bistodeau, CEN, CPEN, TCRN, Minnesota
- William Hamlyn, CEN, CPEN, TCRN, Texas
Society of Trauma Nurses (STN) Scholarship - $35,000
BCEN Doctoral Scholarship Recipients
- Sean Elwell, MSN, RN, TCRN, NE-BC, EMT, Wilmington University
- Lisa Lietzke, MSN, RN, CEN, CPEN, TCRN, Wilmington University
- Wendy McEuen, MSN, RN, TCRN, CEN, Chamberlain University
- Joshua Winowiecki, BSN, RN, Michigan State University
- Michelle Wright, MSN, ACNP-BC, CCRN, TNS, University of Illinois
BCEN Graduate Scholarship Recipients
- Valerie Brockman, RN, BSN, CAISS, CSTR, Western Governors University
- Sarah Harless, BSN, RN, TCRN, University of Michigan
- Karyn Haynes, BSN, RN, PCCN, CCRN, TCRN, NREMT, Pace University
- Kara Himelfarb, BSN, RN, TCRN, CFRN, CCRN, CEN, BS, MT, PHRN, NRP, The University of Alabama at Birmingham
- Katelyn Kulacz, RN, BSN, CEN, TCRN, Western Governors University
- Nicole Miller, BSN, RN, University of Texas at Arlington
BCEN Paramedic Scholarship Recipients
- Luis Tapia, EMT/ Paramedic
BCEN Undergraduate Scholarship Recipients
- Ivan Jorrin, RN, TCRN, California State University Fullerton
- Clinton Payne, RN, CEN, TCRN, CCRN, NRP, Grand Canyon University
Air & Surface Transport Nursing Association (ASTNA) - $35,000
BCEN Doctoral (DPN) Scholarship Recipients
- Gregory S. Wamack
- Dawn Handlin
- Angela Teckemeyer
- Keri Roden
BCEN Masters (MSN) Scholarship Recipients
- Tiffani Santos
- Catherine Robnett
- Matt Jensen
- Christine Muszalski
- Nicholas Fatolitis
Paramedic to RN Scholarship Recipients
- Amanda Odegaard
- Jeffrey Begay Jr.
BCEN Undergraduate (BSN) Scholarship Recipients
- Jessica Wergin
National Student Nurses Association Foundation (NSNA) - $35,000
- Julia Badolato, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA
- Erin Burney, The University of Arkansas, Eleanor Mann School of Nursing, Fayetteville, AR
- Chloe Chappell, The University of Arkansas, Eleanor Mann School of Nursing, Fayetteville, AR
- Camryn Cothran, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC
- Jacklyn Eifert, AdventHealth University, Orlando, FL
- Lauren Lodico, Molloy University, Rockville Centre, NY
- Olivia Manning, Creighton University, Omaha, NE
- Sarah McCloskey, The Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA
- Lauren Sturgill, Seattle University, Seattle, WA
- Grace Suton, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA
- Rosalina Volo, Randolph-Macon College, Ashland, VA