OMC Recognizes Education Department

OMC Recognizes Education Department

OMC’s Education Department has Brought Excellent Education and Resources to Providers and Staff During the COVID-19 Pandemic

From left: Gretchen Souza, Rueben Rodocker, Dani Perry, Vickie DeMott, and Lisa Duff

The Olympic Medical Center Board of Commissioners recognized the organization’s Education Department at a virtual board meeting recently, acknowledging the team’s commitment to bringing excellent education and resources to OMC providers and staff.

As part of the Education Department, the recognized employees made it possible for professionals to safely meet and work amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Going above and beyond during the pandemic, the honored staff developed excellent processes to keep other employees safe, such as leading N95 fit testing events, implementing education on proper use of personal protective equipment (PPE), and, most recently, developing and managing the OMC COVID-19 vaccine clinic team.

Chief Human Resources Officer and General Counsel Jennifer Burkhardt presented the awards to the department led by Gretchen Souza, RN, Director of Education, and team members Dani Perry, MSN, RN, Lisa Duff, Vickie DeMott and Rueben Rodocker.

Education Department Director Gretchen Souza, RN, believes supporting her team means supporting OMC as an organization. “To Gretchen, OMC employees are all valued customers of the Education Department,” said Burkhardt. “In her nine years in the department (and nearly 17 years with the organization), Gretchen has been vital to supporting OMC.” From implementing a nurse residency program to administering the first vaccine to an OMC front-line worker, Gretchen’s commitment has always shone through. She received a well-deserved promotion to Director this past year after growing the Education Department, developing staff, expanding services and never shying away from a challenge.

Burkhardt highlighted the accomplishments of Clinical Educator Dani Perry, RN: “Dani has been a gift to the Education Department since joining our team. She was the leader of the N95 mass fit testing clinics in the spring and summer of 2020, and she has been a leader in process development and management for the COVID-19 vaccine clinic team. Dani is a team player and an encourager to all she interacts with.”

Program Assistant Lisa Duff’s willingness to take on new challenges has made her an integral member of the team, said Burkhardt, adding that “Duff’s contribution to employee wellness as part of the COVID-19 Wellness Team and editor of the twice-monthly Education Blackboard publication makes her a much-needed asset to the organization.”

As a 25-year employee of OMC, Technology Specialist Vickie DeMott has seen many changes during her tenure at the organization. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she has embraced each change with grace. “Since the start of the pandemic, Vickie’s job has changed 100%,” said Burkhardt. “She’s adapted to evolving needs and handled it with professionalism and heart.”

According to Burkhardt, Rueben Rodocker has contributed tremendously in his short time on the team as the Organizational Development Coordinator. “Rueben jumped in with both feet and has been helpful in a large staff testing clinic and the vaccine clinic,” said Burkhardt, “We are thankful for him and looking forward to seeing his growth.”

“This exceptional Education Department team gives great service, education and care to the OMC community,” said Burkhardt.

This exceptional Education Department team gives great service, education and care to the OMC community.

Jennifer Burkhardt, OMC Chief Human Resources Officer and General Counsel