Giving back to those who give: Sen. Murphy hosts 1st annual nurses of the year celebration

Valhalla, NY - Nurses are an indispensable part of our health care system, yet their tireless service to patients and their communities often goes unnoticed. In appreciation of the many contributions made by nurses in the 40th Senate District, Senator Terrence Murphy hosted the first annual Nurses of the Year celebration on Thursday, May 18th at the Westchester Medical Center. The ceremony recognized the many contributions made by 17 nurses in the 40th Senate District, particularly in their roles as volunteers, mentors and departmental leaders.


"Nursing is an extraordinary profession because it requires a life-long commitment to learning as well as empathy and compassion for patients and their families, qualities which all of our honorees have shown in abundance," said Senator Murphy. "There is no denying it - nursing is a tough profession. I am sure there are days some of our honorees wanted to quit; days of heart-wrenching shifts that moved them to tears, and difficult moments dealing with patients, doctors, or fellow nurses. But they persevered because they knew they were making a difference."


Caroline Murphy, the Senator's wife and a nurse at Northern Westchester Hospital, served as Master of Ceremonies. "A successful nurse gives a piece of their heart to each and every patient they care for," said Mrs. Murphy. "One of the most rewarding aspects of being a nurse is interacting with the patients and seeing them progress. Being in a profession where you get to do something to make a difference in a person's life is a tremendously rewarding."


The 2017 Nurses of the Year:

Dana Annacone, RN, New York-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital

Dr. Amy Ansehl, RN, DNP, FNP-BC, Visiting Nurse Services in Westchester County

Sarena Chisick, BSN, MEd, RN, Putnam Hospital Center

James Galvin, RN, Westchester Medical Center

Mary Beth Guyett, RN, BSN, Lakeland Central School District

Bernadette Hogan, MPA, BSN, RN, CNML, Phelps Memorial Hospital/Northwell Health

John "Jack" Mace, RN, Westchester Medical Center

Jane Metzger, RN, Northern Westchester Hospital

Elizabeth O'Neill, MSN, RN, Westchester Medical Center Health Network

Lisa Padilla, RN, Northern Westchester Hospital

Maryanne Portoro, BS, RN, Phelps Memorial Hospital

Sherlon Pressley, RN, MSN. VA Hudson Valley Health Care System

Barbara Reale, RN, VA Hudson Valley Health Care System

Kevin Roth, RN, New York-Presbyterian Hudson Valley Hospital

Cristina Toral, RN, Putnam Hospital Center

Casandra Way, BSN, RN, CEN, CPAN, Northern Westchester Hospital Center

Susan Young, RN, Westchester Medical Center


While all of the nurses work in the 40th Senate District, four of the nurses continue to live locally as well. Dr. Amy Ansehl (Chappaqua) and John Mace (Pleasantville) live in Westchester County, while Sarena Chisick (Carmel) and John Galvin (Mahopac) reside in Putnam County.   


There was one nurse in particular Senator Murphy wanted to recognize - his wife, Caroline, who has had a distinguished 25-year career in nursing. Mrs. Murphy was given a proclamation recognizing her dedication and continued excellence in her chosen profession.


Westchester County Legislator Margaret Cunzio singled out her own local hero - John Mace, a thirty-two year nursing veteran known for his gift of conversation and ability to help nurses learn to "Play nice in the sandbox." Legislator Cunzio presented Nurse Mace with a special proclamation declaring May 19th "John Mace Day."

In his closing remarks, Senator Murphy praised the nurses for their devotion to their duties and to their communities: "Nurses are on the front lines. Without you, nothing happens. You literally save lives every day. Nurses rock!"