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Nurse honored for distinguished service

Tonia Presley, RN at West Georgia Health, has been selected as the recipient of the 2015 Mary Lynn Faress Award for Distinguished Service.

Tonia Presley, RN at West Georgia Health, has been selected as the recipient of the 2015 Mary Lynn Faress Award for Distinguished Service.

The award has been presented each year since 2003 to a WGH nurse and LaGrange College graduate who exemplifies the ideals of personal and professional integrity demonstrated by long-time Chief Nursing Officer Mary Lynn Faress, who retired from WGH in 2002.

Presley began working on the fifth floor at WGH in January 2004 after graduating in 2003 from LaGrange College with a bachelor of science degree in nursing. She has served as charge nurse on the night shift since 2004.

“I am truly honored to be this year’s recipient of such a prestigious award,” Presley said. “It is with great pleasure to me that I was put into a group of highly respected and wonderful nurses who have previously been recognized.

“I am so thankful to all of my co-workers, past and present, who have helped me throughout my career here at West Georgia. Being a nurse has always been my calling, and I enjoy being with my patients and co-workers every single day.”

Those who nominated Presley said she exemplifies the ideals of Faress, who worked at WGH for 27 years and touched the lives of people by serving selflessly to the greater good of others; improving the quality and level of care through teamwork, personal involvement and ethical behavior; believing in the unlimited potential of every individual; listening and communicating with understanding and without judgment; and leading by example.

“Tonia always gives 100 percent to her job, and she expects 100 percent from everyone when it comes to taking care of people,” said Karoline Turner, RN. “We can count on her to take care of anything that arises, and she demonstrates professionalism on a daily basis.

“For new nurses she is always eager to teach and lend an ear to listen and answer all questions and concerns. She always leads by example and tends to the needs of others.”