Dedicated to providing the best care.

2014 Spirit of Excellence

Our Spirit of Excellence award winners represent the heart and soul of who we are and what we do at Amedisys, through their outstanding care for their patients. The individuals honored here – and so many other dedicated Amedisys clinicians like them – are a true testament to the impact that great quality care can have on the lives of patients. Their passion and commitment to service bring joy and inspiration to everyone around them.

Shane Wood, RN - Home Health Nurse of the Year Sandra Shaughnessy, RN - Home Health Nurse of the Year Denise Clever, RN - Hospice Nurse of the Year Kerri Morrissey, Case Manager - Hospice Nurse of the Year Jason Clark, OT - Therapist of the Year Aris Abrasaldo, PT - Therapist of the Year Angie Arnold, Hospice clinical manager - Clinical Manager of the Year Agartha Sattiewhite, Home health aide - Aide of the Year April Peterson, Hospice aide - Aide of the Year Amarilis Almonte, Hospice aide - Aide of the Year Gloria Osei, Hospice aide - Aide of the Year Whitney Blethen, Volunteer Coordinator - Patient Services Support Professional of the Year Marjorie Hartley, Volunteer - Volunteer of the Year Clarence Smith, Volunteer - Volunteer of the Year Melody Rees, Hospice Case Manager - Christen Award Winner Jace and Jasper Bowling - Jr. Christen Award Winner
Shane Wood, RN - Home Health Nurse of the Year

Shane Wood, RN
Home Health Nurse of the Year

(Batesville, Arkansas) Shane's tenacity, problem solving, adaptation and flexibility create opportunities for him to connect with his patients and find solutions to help prevent hospitalization. His commitment to their care and well-being is unsurpassed. Two patients on a fixed income were so touched by his compassion when he lined up community resources to help them fill their empty pantry with food, they cried. It is this level of dedication coupled with so many random acts of kindness that one family even thanked Shane by name in his patient's obituary. Said one patient's wife about this former paramedic and emergency department worker, "Shane is part of our family; he treats us with the kind of care that makes us feel like his family."


Sandra Shaughnessy, RN - Home Health Nurse of the Year

Sandra Shaughnessy, RN 
Home Health Nurse of the Year

(Hillsboro, Missouri) Sandra Shaughnessy is considered the matriarch of selflessness at her care center. Her passion has helped her make a difference in the lives of even the most challenging of patients, but none more miraculous than one very special case. Having survived a natural disaster but completely devastated by it, this particular patient could not muster the will or strength to comply with treatment or accept help for treating his condition. It was if he had given up on himself. Sandy, however, would never give up on him. Today, he now actively participates in physical therapy, is complying with a diabetic diet and is getting healthier. Because of Sandra, he is a different patient.


Denise Clever, RN - Hospice Nurse of the Year

Denise Clever, RN
Hospice Nurse of the Year

(Greeneville, Tennessee) Denise's abilities as a hospice nurse, combined with her grace and spiritual support to the patient and his or her family, make her an exceptional example of a compassionate caregiver. She relies on her spiritual association with God for energy and strength, and shares that comfort with those around her. Denise is admired for consistently putting the needs of others above her own, including those of her co-workers. Said one fellow employee, "I could imagine her in a Super Nurse uniform because of her ability to go above and beyond the call of duty." A picture-perfect example of care, concern and compassion, Denise Clever is very special to all those that know and work with her.


Kerri Morrissey, Case Manager - Hospice Nurse of the Year

Kerri Morrissey, Case Manager

Hospice Nurse of the Year

(Portsmouth, New Hampshire) Kerri Morrissey is a committed, dedicated Hospice Case Manager. Her caring nature and sincere listening skills earn the confidence of patients and everyone she works with. A vocal patient advocate, Kerri regularly and courageously pursues her patient’s best interests at all times. Says Kerri, "It is about using your instincts to ensure that patients and families have as much peace and dignity as possible at the end of life." Her support and mentorship are prized by the Amedisys team of Portsmouth.


Jason Clark, OT - Therapist of the Year

Jason Clark, OT
Therapist of the Year

(Greeneville, Tennessee) Jason Clark exemplifies the expertise and care Amedisys strives to deliver in patient care. He is a knowledgeable and caring Occupational Therapist who often exceeds the expectations of his patients and coworkers. He sets goals for his patients and helps them achieve them, resulting in a better quality of life. Jason's friendly personality and willingness to listen instantly earns the trust of all his patients, as his dedication earns their admiration and appreciation long after treatment ends. One of his patients remarked of the important role he played quite succinctly. He stated, "Jason helped me get my life back."


Aris Abrasaldo, PT - Therapist of the Year

Aris Abrasaldo, Occupational Therapy Assistant
Therapist of the Year

(Oak Ridge, Tennessee) Aris Abrasaldo, the "serenading therapist" provides exceptional, compassionate therapy and applies his special talents to help celebrate important goals. Cheering up his patients, he serenades them with Josh Groban's "You Raise Me Up" when they are able to stand for the first time. He brings a smile to their faces and lessens their struggles. Aris is a positive energy to behold, motivating his patients and raising the spirits of everyone around him from the families of patients to the Oak Ridge Amedisys team.


Angie Arnold , hospice clinical manager - Clinical Manager of the Year

Angie Arnold, Hospice Clinical Manager
Clinical Manager of the Year

(Ringgold, Georgia) Angie Arnold is the kind of Clinical Manager who not only encourages her employees, but also helps them become better nurses. She goes out of her way to train and teach those who are struggling or just need her assistance. She is a wonderful mentor and even on her days off, she has made herself available to assist with patients. Angie’s experience providing quality, compassionate care to every patient sets an example for the nurses she manages and inspires them to strive for excellence.


Agartha Sattiewhite, home health aide - Aide of the Year

Agartha Sattiewhite, Home Health Aide
Aide of the Year

(Leominster, Massachusetts) Agartha Sattiewhite has a passion for what she does as an Amedisys Hospice Aide. She treats her patients with tenderness and compassion, dignity and respect, taking pride in caring for them and their grieving families. Agartha’s comforting presence is well known and often requested in their community. In fact, one of her patient’s last wishes was to spend the entire day with her. Touched, she rearranged her schedule to make sure she was available and spent many hours sitting vigil until she passed. It is this kind of selflessness that embodies the spirit she brings to all aspects of the care she provides.


April Peterson, hospice aide - Aide of the Year

April Peterson, Hospice Aide
Aide of the Year

(Portsmouth, New Hampshire) April Peterson has a warm energy and enthusiasm for life which brightens the lives of her patients. She is incredibly thoughtful, and goes out of her way to give special, personal care to her patients with inventive, creative solutions. Providing respect and dignity and advocating for her patient’s well-being makes April Peterson a shining light in hospice care, and her willingness to help her co-workers at any time makes her a valuable Amedisys team member.



Amarilis Almonte, hospice aide - Aide of the Year

Amarilis Almonte, Hospice Aide
Aide of the Year

(Methuen, Massachusetts) Amarilis Almonte is committed to compassionate patient care with patience and kindness. After arriving to find a patient who had passed away alone, she asked to stay and provide postmortem care to ensure the patient was sent to the funeral home with dignity. Amarilis connects with her patients, and her generous acts of kindness are recognized by everyone she meets. With eight years of dedicated service and a reputation for excellence, Amarilis has set the bar for care and compassion at Amedisys.


Gloria Osei, hospice aide - Aide of the Year

Gloria Osei Hospice Aide
Aide of the Year

(Leominster, Massachusetts #4421) Gloria Osei embodies compassionate hospice care. An Amedisys Hospice Aide for the last four years, she displays pride in her job, a strong work ethic and generates an endless amount of patience on a daily basis. Gloria has earned the respect from even her most challenging patients by providing continuous quality care with leadership, professionalism and grace. Over the years, she has developed a keen sense of how to care for the most serious hospice patients. She maintains a critical relationship between the facility and the care center, and is often requested as the hospice aide when the time arises. She is a shining example of the Amedisys SPIRIT and her dedication is simply unmatched.


Whitney Blethen, Volunteer Coordinator - Patient Services Support Professional of the Year

Whitney Blethen, Volunteer Coordinator
Patient Services Support Professional of the Year

(Portsmouth, New Hampshire) Whitney Blethen, Volunteer Coordinator, supervises a group of over 50 volunteers in the service of Amedisys patients and their families. She identifies and cultivates each volunteer’s special gift so it can be shared to its fullest potential. Her hard work has resulted in numerous programs and initiatives including the Veteran to Veteran Volunteer Program, a monthly Community Giving Initiative, as well as appreciation events, educational opportunities and enrichment activities for volunteers. She leads the volunteer team with hard work, dedication and a level of enthusiasm that inspires everyone around her, including her teammates.


Marjorie Hartley, volunteer - Hospice Volunteer of Year

Marjorie Hartley, Volunteer
Hospice Volunteer of Year

(North Kingstown, Rhode Island) Marjorie Hartley began volunteering with Amedisys six years ago as a scrapbooker, creating Chart-A-Life posters for dementia patients. She is always willing to help, and her caring nature quickly led her to complete direct care training to assist hospice patients at the time of death and their families. Selfless, giving, and kind are words often used to describe Marjorie. She is a valuable member of the volunteer team with over 229 hours of her time given to Amedisys within the last year, and she continues to share her artistic side for the benefit of patients and their families.


Clarence Smith, volunteer - Hospice Volunteer of the Year

Clarence Smith, Volunteer
Hospice Volunteer of the Year

(South Portland, Maine) Clarence Smith has sheltered the homeless, worked for peace, helped suffering veterans and comforted the sick and dying. His service to Amedisys' patients and families is without measure, but his time volunteering totals over 1,200 hours since 2008. He gives his presence, respect and kindness to every patient he cares for, and is an exemplary ambassador for the sacred work of hospice. His service includes 13 years at the local hospital, 11 years at Habitat for Humanity, and 6 years as a member of Veterans for Peace. Recent recognitions include the “Governor’s Service Award," "Senior Model Citizen," and the 2014 "Patient/Family Volunteer" winner of the NHPCO's "Volunteers are the Foundation of Hospice" award.


Melody Rees, Hospice Case Manager - Christen Award Winner

Melody Rees, Hospice Case Manager
Christen Award Winner

(Portsmouth, New Hampshire) Melody Rees founded Tumaini Kenya with Emmanuel Koti, a Kenyan RN. Together they offer spiritual, medical, and physical care along with educational and emotional support for children and families infected with or affected by HIV. In less than a year, Tumaini helped educate, feed and provide income-producing opportunities for those families through donations and sponsorships. Melody is making a difference in the lives of these families and serves as a model of volunteerism for Amedisys.


Jace and Jasper Bowling, Hospice Case Manager - Christen Award Winner

Jace and Jasper Bowling
Jr. Christen Award Winner

(Somerset, Kentucky #2157) Jace and Jasper Bowling, sons of Amedisys employee Ed Bowling, understand just how possible it is to accomplish anything in the face of adversity. Jace, 12, has only six fingers and is an above-the-knee amputee. Jasper, 16, has an amputated arm. Despite their disabilities, each son devotes time to others by volunteering to build homes, feeding the homeless and performing random acts of kindness that range from feeding a family at Thanksgiving to raking leaves for an elderly neighbor. Jace and Jasper are an inspiration to everyone they meet, everyone they help, and to other children living with disabilities. They truly embody the Amedisys SPIRIT of hope and service.