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In This Issue:
Saluting Service from five to 50 years
Norma Appleyard - Half a Century of Service to BWH
At the annual Service Awards Ceremony, held on Thursday, June 20, BWH paid tribute to the commitment and dedication of hundreds of employees. This year’s ceremony was an historic one, according to Cheryl Locke, vice president, Human Resources and emcee of the celebration, who proudly noted that with more than 900 employees it was one of the largest groups honored and the first time a 50-year employee was recognized at BWH. The awardees, their friends and families were welcomed by President Gary Gottlieb, MD, MBA who thanked employees for “bringing their heart and soul to work every day.” “We have a remarkable mission and it is predicated upon your focus, dedication and sheer determination to do what is in the best interests of our patients,” said Gottlieb.
During the ceremony, Chief Operating Officer Matt Van Vranken joined Locke and Gottlieb in celebrating the accomplishments of the 2002 Service Award recipients. “Each individual being honored tonight has left a legacy for us to uphold,” he said. “Your years of service cannot be measured in terms of the incredible value you offer to BWH.” However, Van Vranken was able to supply one number to put a mark on the extraordinary commitment of employees – he calculated that this year’s awardees contributed a combined 12,656 years of service to BWH. This number tells many stories of exceptional growth, both for the institution and its staff. It speaks to a monumental commitment of one special employee, Norma Appleyard, who has dedicated a half-century of service to BWH. It also reflects the personal side of the hospital, a unique feature of such a large organization. The intimacy BWH possesses allows longtime employees like Celestine Benjamin and Gloria Layne to make BWH feel like home.
At this year’s Service Awards, Celestine Benjamin, a care coordinator and Gloria Layne, of BWH Dental, were not only celebrating 30 and 15 years of service, they were celebrating a friendship that has spanned three decades and thousands of miles. Benjamin and Layne, who spent their childhood together in the West Indies, didn’t have a typical run-in along the Pike. Finding one another at BWH was a complete surprise. When they were reunited here at the hospital, it was years after leaving Barbados and immigrating to the United States. Now, BWH is not just a place of employment, it also a place that brings them closer to home. And, based on their combined 45 years of service, one that is a welcomed home away from home.
While employees like Benjamin and Layne celebrated their career accomplishments and friendships they have built at BWH, no story was more remarkable than that of Norma Appleyard. She received a standing ovation from the crowd, when Andy Whittemore, MD, chief medical officer presented her with a special recognition for 50 years of service. Her tenure at BWH, the longest in history, was the highlight of this year’s ceremony.