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Three Passavant Employees Receive Patriot Award


Jessica Ford, Karoline Myers and Shannon Watson received the Patriot Award from the Employer Support division of the National Guard and Reserve.

The Patriot Award is given to a supervisor or manager who makes special effort to support a working National Guard member with flexible scheduling, time off before and after deployment, care for families and, if necessary, leaves of absence. 

Tamera Norton, a registered nurse in the nonprofit hospital’s transitional care unit, made the nominations.

Norton, a sergeant in the Army National Guard, has been a combat medic in the Army National Guard for 16 years, and has served one deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

She is assigned to the Headquarters Company 766th Brigade Engineer Battalion in Decatur and was activated to support state efforts in the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It means a great deal to me that Memorial Health System has leaders who are willing to work with every aspect of the changes associated with activation,” Norton said. “As a team, [the award nominees] provided a seamless transition that made this particular time less stressful. It is so important to recognize those who not only support our soldiers, but those who support our communities in the background.”

Ford is Norton’s nursing supervisor in the transitional care unit, and Myers coordinates scheduling in Nursing Administration. At the time the award was announced, Watson coordinated scheduling in Human Resources.

“Being willing to jump right in and take an active role in a pandemic is so heroic, and Tamera is always there, ready and willing to serve our country,” Myers said. “I’m always willing to help and be flexible with Tamera, however needed.”

“It’s an honor to work with Tamera,” Ford said. “She shows such great pride in her work, both here at Passavant and with the National Guard.”