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Nurses Who Inspire: Nurses Week 2018—May 6-12

As leaders, clinicians, researchers, innovators, and scientists, Kaiser Permanente nurses are advancing the delivery of excellent, compassionate care for our members across the continuum, and boldly transforming care to improve the health of our communities and nation.

In celebration of Nurses Week, May 6 – 12, scroll down and meet 12 Kaiser Permanente Northern California nurses who are representative of the breadth and depth of nursing excellence within the organization.

> Tell us about the nurses in your life who inspire, innovate, and influence in their work.


National Extraordinary Nurse Awardee

Bea Anne Lynch, RN

Staff RN IV, San Jose Behavioral Health

As a pediatric psychiatry nurse, Bea Anne Lynch serves a population that is often overlooked and misunderstood: children with anxiety, depression, autism, and developmental disorders. Colleagues say she has a special ability to connect with these kids and make them feel safe. Bea Anne has been a nurse for more than 40 years, in a career that has included case manager, infection-control specialist, employee health coordinator, and advice nurse.


National Extraordinary Nurse Awardee

Catherine Parsons-Goudberg, RN

NICU Clinical Nurse Specialist, Roseville Medical Center

Catherine Parsons-Goudberg has cared for some of the tiniest patients during her 42 years as a neonatal intensive care nurse. No matter how small, every patient benefits from her vast nursing knowledge. She even stays in touch with families from the NICU, delighting when her patients thrive. Catherine is equally talented as an educator. She has said that one of her favorite roles is training and mentoring staff.


National Extraordinary Nurse Awardee

Linda Ackerman, RN

PCS Program Director, Regional Offices

As director of the Caring Science program for Kaiser Permanente in Northern California, Linda Ackerman encourages nurses to incorporate that philosophy in their practice by honoring the unique needs of each patient and supporting decisions that nurture their well-being. A nurse for 37 years, Linda works with nurses at 21 medical centers to help them incorporate the Caring Science philosophy into their practice by being authentic, kind, and present.


Edward Salarda, RN

Staff RN IV, Fresno Medical Center

The word “leader” is applied to Edward Salarda, RN, and when it comes to his patients, he is a strong advocate who ensures that anyone under his care understands their treatments and feels comfortable. Additionally, Edward has strong technical knowledge and is a mentor to his colleagues. Kind, hard-working, and helpful, he can work through any obstacle in a positive fashion. The hallmark of his work day is that he always puts the patient at the center.


Loretta Stroh, RN

Staff RN III, Sacramento Call Center

An experienced advice nurse, Loretta Stroh, RN, is passionate about teaching and sharing her best practices in ergonomics, as well as her clinical knowledge with her peers during team meetings and huddles. Loretta is a caring and compassionate nurse who is a role model in her professionalism, positive approach, adaptability, and work ethic. Additionally, Loretta shares her knowledge by writing articles for other clinicians at the call center, on topics ranging from telephone triage to advice tips to give patients on the topics of coughs and colds.


Robin Alfred, RN

Staff RN II, San Francisco Medical Center

Ranging from her “big smile” to her ability to provide care to our most critically ill patients, Robin Alfred inspires others by her integrity, calm, and focus. Robin has been described as providing the most sensitive and respectful nursing, for which she receives compliments from her patients. In addition, she is just as dedicated to her colleagues. She often stays to help out when other clinicians need her, where she is calm and focused during emergencies.


Roshni Gladson, RN

Staff RN II, San Leandro Medical Center

“Honest, respectful, and reliable” are words used to describe Roshni Gladson, who is consistently recognized by her peers, patients, and their family members for her caring bedside manner. Roshni has been acknowledged as a shift leader who can get others through difficult times and who utilizes her clinical skills to educate her peers. Roshni has been described as bringing positivity during stressful situations. A humble team player, she goes out of her way to help.


Tim Schlatter, RN

Home Health RN II, The Landing, Union City

Tim Schlatter, RN, regularly receives praise and thanks from his patients, particularly for his attention to infection control, his calming manner in explaining diseases or symptom management, and his ability to collaborate with other clinicians. Whether demonstrating best practices for IV and wound care, or coordinating care for a patient, those who work with Tim have described him as organized, dedicated, a patient teacher to other nurses, having a vast knowledge of diseases, and “a true patient advocate.”


Lilibeth Jimenez, RN

Staff RN IV, San Jose Medical Center

When asked to describe Lilibeth Jimenez, her long-time supervisor wrote, “A finer ICU nurse and role model you will not find!” Just one example: A fellow nurse suffered a cerebral hemorrhage. Lilibeth rushed to the hospital to help the nurse, who is a close friend. Her supervisor said, “I will never forget what courage and professionalism it took for Lilibeth to care for this special patient that evening; she did it with such love and expertise.”


Tina Vitale-McDowell, RN

Staff RN IV, Oakland Medical Center

Tina Vitale-McDowell, RN, has been described as a force of nature who is driven and focused on improving the care of pediatric patients, especially those in Pediatric Hematology/Oncology. Tina has forged a strong relationship between the Emergency Department and the Pediatric ICU to improve care in the ED. She also attends Kaiser Permanente Oakland’s parent advisory meetings to better understand patient and parent needs. Tina represents the gold standard of nursing by inspiring others with her dedication and thoughtfulness.


Ruth Somera, RN

Staff RN III, Modesto Medical Center

Described as one of Manteca’s most ardent advocates for providing exceptional patient care, Ruth Somera also mentors student nurses and co-workers. Whether comforting and educating a newly diagnosed diabetes patient or studying for her Staff Nurse IV certification in clinical nursing, Ruth is making a difference in patients’ lives. After volunteering to provide health care in Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria, Ruth even met with Congress to discuss the devastation.


Imelda Valenzuela, RN

Staff RN III, San Leandro Medical Center

Families say they feel valued and safe under the care of Imelda Valenzuela, an experienced bilingual nurse. Imelda has also been described as embodying professionalism, representing a balance between clinical practice and leadership. She is a naturally gifted leader who takes opportunities to teach and propel the knowledge of her co-workers, patients, and their families. Imelda has been praised for getting to the root of each patient’s problems and involving a multidisciplinary team to intervene.

Who inspires you?

There are more than 23,000 nurses in Kaiser Permanente Northern California who provide skilled care to patients and members. Who among them is your own hero? Tell us how she or he inspires, innovates, or influences as a nurse.

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Guestbook entries
26 entries.
Elizabeth Coleman wrote on July 18, 2019
Julie Duke is an awesome nurse who goes all out for her patients. She is so inspiring and encouraging. My daughter was diagnosed at age 12 with type 1 diabetes. Julie was her diabetic educator who was seriously like a life line. She went above and beyond for her patients telling us about latest technologies and camps. She is genuine and caring. I cannot say enough about how amazing this woman is! Not only does she care but she is always positive and encouraging. She understands what a type 1 diabetic faces and helps both the patient and the family. Our daughter has been under her care for almost 6 years and now is transitioning out of pediatric care. On to adulthood and she has been educated and prepared to take this on by Julie. My daughter hated going to drs but Julie made it a positive experience. As the mother of the patient this awesome nurse was the calm in the storm. She helped us navigate through some really tough times especially early on with the diagnosis. She was great about getting back to us whenever we had problems. We’ll miss this exceptional nurse!!!!!!
Angela Anderson wrote on May 14, 2019
I would like to acknowledge and honor Amal Johnson, Infection Prevention RN, who just retired from the EBSA on 4/26/19. She split her time between Oakland and Richmond but was especially fond of Richmond. I've known Amal for many years as she worked at 4 different health systems, before arriving at KP. I was always amazed at how sincerely passionate she was about her work and caring about the patients. We were fortunate to have her at KP. I hope there will be another RN that can fill her shoes!
Ajarat Bada wrote on May 9, 2019
I would like to acknowledge Mindy Prestia, RN Regional Quality Director for Home Health and Hospice. Many times, we focus on nurses who are giving care at the bedside or directly interacting with patients, which Mindy has done with much care and compassion for over 20 years. However, we forget those nurse advocates, people who work behind the scenes to ensure that the quality of services we provide our members is indeed top grade. Mindy cares that things are done right, all the time and at all times. She is concerned that the training and support we provide to our staff is the best out there so that they can in turn provide the best car to our members. I am happy to have joined Kaiser and worked under Mindy Prestia. She taught me the ultimate skills needed to succeed in any role; Integrity and Grit! I am inspired by her in many ways than one. Thank you Mindy for all you do for all of us 🙂
Linnea Williams wrote on May 9, 2019
Our nurse, Gail, is incredible! She has so much energy and enthusiasm every day that I sometimes think that she was the Energizer bunny in another life. She has such overwhelming compassion for all of her patients that they often comment on how kind she is. And Gail generously shares her many years of wisdom with all. And her partner in care, Gaby, is amazing too! Our clinic is so fortunate to have these two nursing professionals on our team.
Jacqueline Takahashi wrote on May 8, 2019
Jacquie is a phone advice nurse for Union City Home Health Care. She is very attentive to the needs of her patients and is an excellent communicator with staff! I would like to acknowledge a job well done!! Thank you! Charlotte Mann
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