Excellence in Management

An RN who makes signifi cant contributions to the management, supervision or direction of the environment of care and the performance of staff , demonstrating an ability to lead, infl uence and improve outcomes of care in any inpatient or outpatient setting.

Diane Stonner, MSN, RN, APN, RNC-NIC

Patient Care Manager, NICU

Northwestern Medicine/ Prentice Women’s Hospital


Stonner said she didn’t expect to win the GEM Award for Excellence in Management. Just being part of the GEM Awards celebration, where “all the fi nalists were winners,” made her feel proud to be a nurse, she said.

At Northwestern Memorial, Stonner has full operational responsibility of an 86-bed neonatal intensive care unit, plus a six-bed satellite. What gives her the most professional satisfaction is the privilege of leading a wonderful team of nurses who are truly committed to patients and their families in the NICU.

Stonner said she is thankful for having mentors who lead by example and inspired her to succeed. They gave her the drive to think outside the box and lead with passion, she said.

She passes this same advice on to her nursing peers. “Take risks and aim high,” she said. “Take your passion in nursing to the next level.”

She also believes in helping nurses who are just starting out. “Encourage and support the novices in the fi eld,” she said. “They are our future experts and nursing leaders.”

16 Visit us at • 2016

When Chilicki learned he was the 2016 Midwest Rising Star, he said he was completely shocked and extremely humbled. For Chilicki, being named a Rising Star meant that “my co-workers and the leadership at Lake Forest Hospital recognize the work I have done since becoming a nurse,” he said. “It reinforces to me that I should continue to strive to always be better.”

Chilicki is especially proud of his role in supporting new nurses as a preceptor and charge nurse at Lake Forest. “I feel that being young in my career has allowed me to connect with our new nurses and help them through that diffi cult transition into practice,” he said. “If I can fi x the little problems or give them the tools to feel confi dent in their practice, then I know they will be better equipped to provide exceptional care to our patients.”

Two pieces of advice that have guided him most in his practice: “Always listen to your gut,” and “Never feel badly about asking for help.” •

Donna Novak, DNP, RN, CRNP, is a freelance writer and works as a community health nurse practitioner at the Bethlehem Health Bureau in Bethlehem, Pa.


Rising Star

An RN who has been licensed and working in any care setting for fewer than fi ve years and who possesses a strong nursing knowledge base and good clinical skills; who shows special characteristics and traits indicative of future leadership strengths; who has personal and career goals in place and who demonstrates knowledge of current professional nursing issues.

David Chilicki, BSN, RN, ONC

Nurse Clinician, Exceptional Practice

Northwestern Medicine Lake Forest (Ill.) Hospital

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