Cherie Lowell (BSN ’00) has been named the 2012 Distinguished Alumna for the Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing at the University of Wyoming. Lowell will be honored for her outstanding contributions to the nursing profession through her excellence in administration at the school's convocation ceremony on May 5, 2012 at 1:30 p.m. in the Fine Arts Center Concert Hall. Lowell will also be keynote speaker for the event.
After becoming a registered nurse (RN) following her graduation from the University of Wyoming BSN program in 2000, Cherie worked as an RN in Georgia and then in Utah. She quickly rose to an administrative role, being placed as the Director of Surgical Services for Mountain West Medical Center in Tooele, Utah only three years out from her bachelor's degree. She remained in that position for seven years during which she also completed her masters of science in nursing degree with an emphasis in healthcare administration. At that time she took over the Director of Clinic Operations in the same medical center.
From a letter sent to support her nomination for this award, the recommender noted:
[Lowell] is an exceptional administrator and nurse. Cherie has been asked to manage two of the most challenging departments in our organization and has exceeded senior management expectations in doing so.
She is responsible for growing our surgical volumes by twenty to thirty percent a year, while maintaining quality and structural control of a complex and demanding department. She managed a multifaceted expansion (doubled capacity) of our surgical physical plant in such a way that operations were not impaired, and grew volumes during this complicated construction process.
She has consistently been recognized as one of our top managers. Because of her exceptional skills and leadership qualities, Cherie was asked to join the Surgical Advisory Board for Community Health Systems -- the largest publicly traded healthcare provider within the United States.
At one point it became clear that we needed new leadership to oversee our clinic operations which is responsible for managing 26 providers and attendant staff. After an extensive nationwide search, we turned inward and asked Cherie if she would consider making a career change which would be of great benefit to our organization; she subsequently agreed to make this change. Since that time Cherie brought the same dedication, professionalism, and zeal she exhibited in managing our surgical services department to our clinics. Processes have been implemented resulting in greater command and control, physician satisfaction has increased markedly, and profitability has been amplified. In short, she has once again exceeded our expectations.
Cherie is an exceptional manager and is highly motivated to assure that whether it be a clinical outcome, a major renovation project, a complex contractual negotiation, targeted growth, or meeting business financial expectations, the objectives are not only met, but often times exceeded. Her demeanor skill set and attitude are exceptional, and packaged in a brilliant, compassionate, and extraordinary woman.
Following her years of service to the Mountain West Medical Center, Lowell took on the Director of the Operating Room at St. Mark's Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah, where she was responsible for overseeing 14 operating rooms and direct oversight of approximately 90 staff members. She is highly respected for her knowledge and professionalism.
While at Mountain West Medical Center and continuing up until this year, she also took on the role of clinical nursing instructor and progressed to preceptor coordinator, supervising associate degree nursing students in clinical locations, securing clinical sites for nursing program, and responsible for the development and fostering of relationships with hospitals and community sites. This year she stepped into a new role of associate dean of nursing for an on-line nursing program in Salt Lake City -- a new role, but still using her excellent administration skills.