What is your title and role with UP Health System?
I am a clinical liaison for inpatient rehab. I get to go out across the Upper Peninsula and tell people how great our Acute Inpatient Rehab Unit is —how excellent is that? Having worked on the unit as an RN I understand just how much of a difference we can make in someone’s life, so when I got the chance to do this I got pretty excited about it. Not just anybody can qualify for rehab, but those that do have a chance at regaining the ability to walk again or drive or return to their jobs or play with their grandchildren! It’s a very rewarding job!
What did you do prior to this new role?
I’ve had many different experiences that all laid the groundwork for my position as External Clinical Liaison for Acute Inpatient Rehab. I have been in marketing and sales, insurance and finance, I’ve been a small business owner and worked for large corporations, and for the last five years I’ve been working as a nurse here at UPHS – Marquette.
What are some of your interests outside of work?
First of all I’m a grandmother and I love to spend my free time with my grandkids! I also consider myself a life-long learner; I love to learn new things and I’m always challenging myself to try something new. So it’s really great when I can be a grandmother and try something new at the same time with them.
I also like to give back to our community. This coming year I will be the president of the Marquette Lions Club, a role I’ve held with our club before. We are the oldest Lions club in Michigan, celebrating our 100th anniversary in April 2019. In 1925, the Lions were challenged by Helen Keller to be “knights of the blind,” and since that time our work has included programs aimed at preventable blindness including offering free vision screenings for children through our Project Kidsight.
What is something about you that might surprise others?
I went back to college for my nursing degree at the age of 45. It was quite the challenge, but I had a lot of support from my family, friends and employers. I obtained my LPN first and then went straight on to my RN at Northern Michigan University. I have to admit that I enjoyed college a lot more in my 40s than I did in my 20s!
What is your favorite part about working at UPHS?
The people — absolutely it’s the people. The patients are on the top of my list. Looking out for someone when they need it most is really an honor and a privilege. My work family is amazing, they work hard, do an outstanding job and they care, truly care about their patients. I’m proud to be on the team! I feel as though I’ve been blessed to find this work!