For the second time this year, the Visiting Nurse Service of New York held its ESPRIT Award ceremony at the Bohemian National Ballroom on New Yorks east side. The award honors employees who embody the spirit and values of VNSNY Excellence, Service to customers, People, fiscal Responsibility, Initiative, and Teamwork.
VNSNY CEO Joan Marren, RN, MEd, read the names and accolades of the 37 ESPRIT awardees, who included employees from every faction of the organization. Marren also received a special award for her part in the organizations recognition with the 2009 American Public Health Association Lillian Wald Service Award.
Former New York City Mayor Ed Koch served as guest speaker during the ceremony. Koch had undergone a quadruple bypass, and after being released from the hospital, relied on the services of VNSNY. He praised his VNSNY care team, thanking them each by name. I was given a second chance by you, he says.
Marianne Savarese, RN, MPH, CCRN, VNSNY Manhattan, was the nurse on Kochs care team. Shes an extraordinary woman, Koch said of Savarese.Marianne Savarese, RN, beams after a ceremony, in which she was recognized for nursing a mayor back to health.
A VNSNY nurse for the past 17 years, Savarese was equally appreciative of the mayor. Hes a great man, she said after the ceremony ended, and he was a wonderful patient.
The ceremony also included a short film that chronicled the organizations marketing efforts from its early days as the Henry Street Settlement through the 1970s and 80s. Footage dating to the silent film era showcased VNSNYs diverse workforce even then, highlighting two nurses one Chinese and one black who cared for New Yorkers downtown in Chinatown and uptown in Harlem, respectively.
With more than 14,000 employees, VNSNY staff continue to be reflective of New Yorks multicultural population, noted Carol Raphael, president and chief executive officer.