Greenebaum Cancer Center Recognizes Compassion in Two Staff Members

For immediate release: December 05, 2014

Biannual Greenebaum Compassion Award presented to Bridgette Gilmore and Brandi Stevenson

Bridgette Gilmore with Dr. Kevin Cullen (right), Ann Rigdon (far left) and the Greenebaum family

Bridgette Gilmore with Dr. Kevin Cullen (right), Ann Rigdon (far left) and the Greenebaum family

Brandi Stevenson with Dr. Kevin Cullen (right), Dr. Duong (far left) and the Greenebaum family

Brandi Stevenson with Dr. Kevin Cullen (right), Dr. Duong (far left) and the Greenebaum family

December 5, 2014 - Two University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center staff members, social worker Bridgette Gilmore, MSW, LCSW, and medical assistant Brandi Stevenson, were honored with the 2014 Greenebaum Compassion Award at a Cancer Center All Hands meeting on December 4. They received the award in recognition of the kindness and humanity they each demonstrate while providing care to patients within the Cancer Center.

The special award was established in 2007 by Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum, for whom the Cancer Center is named, to recognize staff members who truly go above and beyond their normal duties and demonstrate extraordinary compassion in addition to excellent care. Their son, Michael, attended the award presentation to personally congratulate and thank the recipients.

Gilmore has been a social worker with the inpatient leukemia unit for two years and, according to her nominators, Lisa Malick, RN, Lisa Mayo and Ann Rigdon, MS, RN, OCN, "exceeds expectations daily, crossing boundaries others would set for their own mental health and survival" while working with leukemia patients who undergo intense treatment and often face challenges with finances and social support. She commits herself fully to her patients and pays attention to their individual needs. For example, she is currently collecting clothing to provide to a patient with few resources.

"GCC nurses count on Bridgette, not just for her capability as a social worker, but they also know that when she enters the room, the patient has a friend," say her nominators. "That friendship, her kind smile and the complete attentiveness she provides to each patient... she inspires us all to view our patients holistically and to pay attention to the little details."

A medical assistant in the outpatient hematology clinic, Brandi Stevenson is known by staff and patients alike as a proactive partner and advocate. According to medical oncologist Vu Duong, MD, one of Stevenson's three nominators, "One particular patient told me privately that she is his lifeline to the Cancer Center. When he is in need of anything or has questions about his care, he calls Brandi directly, knowing that she will get the answer he needs in a timely manner."

Examples of Stevenson's compassion for patients are plentiful - she has stayed late to make sure a patient's transportation arrived, personally tracked down patients for their appointments, and taken steps others wouldn't to ensure a patient's comfort during treatment. According to Dr. Duong, she was also instrumental to his ability to diagnose a patient with very rare congenital bone marrow failure syndromes by facilitating the processing of a very specialized lab test. "In the end, a 21-year-old woman who had been searching for answers her whole life finally received a diagnosis based on these tests, and Brandi played a very large role in that."

Compassion Award nominations are made by the Cancer Center staff, and winners are selected by a committee representing various departments. As award recipients, Gilmore and Stevenson received a $2,500 cash award, a crystal plaque and a commemorative pin, and their names were added to a list of past honorees on a Compassion Award display in the Stoler Pavilion waiting area.