Nursing Careers Nurse Recognition

Nurse Recognition

When you go into nursing, your profession is more than a paycheck. You truly care about the well-being of others, and you want to use your knowledge to help people feel better during their most difficult times. Monument Health nurses lead the way in our organization’s vision to “start with heart,” and are regularly recognized at the organizational, community, and national levels for providing skilled, compassionate care.

Nurses Week Celebration

Nurses Week is a special time of year at Monument Health. While appreciating our nursing caregivers is a year-round focus, Nurses Week is an opportunity for us to truly recognize our nurses’ dedication, compassion and integral role in our organization. Nursing leaders across all locations have a tradition of honoring nurses with awards, giving out prizes, organizing fun activities, having nursing-focused vendor fairs, providing yummy food, and more. We also use this time to remind nurses of opportunities for advancement and professional connections. National Nurses Week starts May 6 and ends on May 12, Florence Nightingale’s birthday. All Monument Health caregivers and physicians are encouraged to join in the celebration.

Nicole Kerkenbush, Chief Nursing and Performance Officer, presents an award to Julie Schmitz, RN, during the 2018 Nurses Day Celebration at Rapid City Hospital.

Daisy Award

Monument Health nurses are nominated by patients and families for the national DAISY Award.

  • 12 times a year at Rapid City Hospital.
  • 4 times a year at Spearfish Hospital.
  • 2 times a year at Sturgis, Lead-Deadwood and Custer hospitals.

What is the Daisy Award?

J. Patrick Barnes was just 33 when he passed away from complications of an auto-immune disease in 1999. Patrick’s family brainstormed what to do in his memory. They vividly recalled the skillful and compassionate care Patrick received from his nurses during his eight-week hospitalization.

They wanted to say “thank you” to nurses everywhere by establishing a recognition program – the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses – to honor the superhuman work nurses do every day at the bedside.

The DAISY Award is a nationwide program presented in collaboration with The American Organization of Nurse Executives (AONE) that rewards and celebrates the extraordinary clinical skill and compassionate care given by nurses every day.

Monument Health hospitals are proud to be DAISY Award hospital partners, recognizing one of our nurses with this special honor every month. The DAISY Award includes a certificate, pin, tote bag, and a Healer’s Touch stone carving.

To find out more about the program, including the growing list of hospital partners, please go to

How to nominate a nurse

Patients, their families, and caregivers may nominate a deserving nurse.

Online Nomination

Download Nomination Form

Once you’ve downloaded the Nomination Form, forms can either be dropped off or mailed to:

  • Custer – mail to 1220 Montgomery St., Custer, SD 57730
  • Rapid City – mail to Rapid City Hospital, Nursing Administration, 353 Fairmont Blvd., Rapid City, SD 57701
  • Spearfish – mail to Monument Health Medical Clinic, 1445 North Avenue, Spearfish, SD 57783
  • Lead-Deadwood – mail to 61 Charles St. Deadwood, SD 57732, Attention Heather Lester
  • Sturgis – mail to 2140 Junction Ave., Sturgis, SD 57785

Award criteria:

  • Must be a direct-care nurse at the bedside
  • Must be nominated by patient, family, or caregiver
  • Must be compassionate, kind & sincere, trustworthy, passionate and caring

About the Daisy Foundation

The DAISY Foundation was established in 1999 by the family of J. Patrick Barnes who died of complications of the auto-immune disease Idiopathic Thrombocytopenia Purpura (ITP) at the age of 33.(DAISY is an acronym for diseases attacking the immune system.) During Patrick’s eight-week hospitalization, his family was awestruck by the care and compassion his nurses provided not only to Patrick but to everyone in his family. So one of the goals they set in creating a foundation in Patrick’s memory was to recognize extraordinary nurses everywhere who make an enormous difference in the lives of so many people by the super-human work they do every day.

Nurses of Excellence

Our nurses are frequently honored by Black Hills Parent Magazine in its annual Nurses of Excellence award program.

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