2021 Cupola Award Recipients
Each year, Lowell General Hospital employees nominate managers and supervisors for their outstanding leadership and contributions to the organization. The Rewards and Recognition Council votes for the year’s Cupola Award recipients based on the nominees’ abilities to meet the hospital’s Standards of Performance and the dimensions of Complete connected care through personal stories or specific actions shared by the nominees’ team.
We are proud to announce this year’s Cupola Award recipients: Donna Desmond, Clinical Manager of R3 and R4; Kevin Foley, Chief Engineer and Property Manager; Rita Lowrey-Bryand, Payroll Supervisor; Angela Rose, Operations Manager of the Food and Nutrition Department.
Here is a closer look at the winners:
Donna Desmond, Clinical Manager of R3 and R4
Donna has been with Lowell General Hospital for nearly 40 years, and has been the clinical manager of R3 and R4 at the Saints campus for the past three years. Her staff say that Donna leads by example, making sure all patients get excellent care and staff feel supported. Donna is never too busy to jump in and help, and staff members shared many examples of Donna assisting during rapid responses, with bed baths on a busy day, and by coming in to work overnight, evening and weekend shifts when staffing was low.
One of her team members said, “I have never witnessed another manager go to such lengths to support her staff.” Donna’s expertise and advice make her staff feel inspired. The staff say that Donna has earned their respect and trust by actively listening to their concerns while working to help the team find a resolution. She has decreased attrition on the unit, improved staff satisfaction, and boosted morale with her words of encouragement on the white board on her office door. Donna has brought a sense of family to the unit and under her leadership they won the TEAM Excellence Award.
When COVID changed the typical work flow and staff were floated to the main campus, Donna helped ease the transition by meeting these staff members in the lobby, bringing them to the floor they would be working on, and introducing them to that team. This made a big difference during an uncertain time. Staff say that Donna has transformed their unit during these challenging times to be the best they can be. “She has united us, pushed us to be better, and lifted us up. We want Donna to know how proud we are to have her as our leader!”
Kevin Foley, CHFM, CEM, Chief Engineer and Property Manager
Kevin has been with Lowell General Hospital since 2013. Kevin was responsible for the planning, setup, and decommissioning of the field hospital two times, and also planned the setup of our Mass Vaccine Program (MVP) site. His staff say that Kevin is a great resource to his team in a mentor’s role and will always take time to discuss or explain different areas in their field. He wants people to do their best and grow in their role. He is always eager to take on a new task or find a solution to a new problem. Whether it is managing the power plants at both campuses or being the property manager for over 27 individual properties, Kevin is always finding ways to improve quality, efficiency and safety.
Staff say that Kevin is present day or night when a need arises. He is available, invites questions and patiently answers them. Kevin has worked to minimize power outages while maintaining the emergency power equipment. He also looks to save the hospital money by working with the utility companies for incentive programs. His vast knowledge and experience are invaluable assets in problem solving and help prevent any disruption to the smooth operation of Lowell General Hospital.
Kevin keeps a cool head under pressure and provides a reassuring presence in times of stress and uncertainty. A staff member shared that Kevin has always been the “go to” person, and that everyone rises under Kevin’s leadership. “I have learned so much from working with Kevin. He really wants to see us succeed.” One team member said, “Kevin is exceptional and we will not see another like him in my opinion. There is nothing I would not do for Kevin Foley.”
Rita Lowrey-Bryand, Payroll Supervisor
Rita has been with Lowell General Hospital nearly 41 years and has been the Payroll Supervisor since 2012. She has the responsibility of making sure over 3,600 employees get paid on a bi-weekly basis, and keeps everyone informed of any and all changes related to the payroll system. The numerous questions and corrections that Rita receives are always answered with kindness and understanding. One nominator shared, “Rita is a great team member, always going above and beyond to make sure the project is a success and that any new processes are implemented seamlessly and with the least possible disruption to daily workflows.”
Her staff say that Rita makes them feel like she always has time to help and if possible, she sends documentation to help them better understand the issue. With the challenges of COVID, there have been many changes to payroll and her staff says that Rita is always on top of everything and is able to guide them through these changes. Rita has a vast knowledge of all departments at Lowell General Hospital, is in touch with timekeepers when there are issues, and follows up to make sure any issues are resolved. Rita tells timekeepers that she would rather have a million questions than for them not to understand.
Rita assisted in several ways for the FEMA reimbursement and worked diligently to keep up with all the federal tax changes and regulations during COVID. “So many times, I have had to present a scenario to Rita and she knew how to address the need quickly and accurately. There is no one that can manage payroll like she can.” Rita is known for being patient, extremely knowledgeable and always willing to help in a moment’s notice.
Angela Rose, Operations Manager of the Food and Nutrition Department
Angela has been with Lowell General Hospital for almost five years. She is described by her staff as being a great leader who is fair and who cares about all of the employees in the department. Angela maintains a positive attitude even on the busiest days and she has a ton of patience. Angela works to improve all areas of the department and make the team better. She is flexible and understanding of the needs of her team.
Staff say that Angela will jump on the tray line, production, cafeteria and the dish room when they are short-handed, and that they appreciate all of her efforts to help out in these areas. She works to ensure patient satisfaction and the consistent high quality of meals that are served to patients. Angela is extremely hard working and does what she needs to do to make her team run at 100 percent. She is known to work long hours and will come in on holidays and weekends when needed, which is a huge help to the team when they are short staffed due to call outs.
Her team says that Angela has really stepped up to the plate and has shown true leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic. She communicates well with supervisors and her team when implementing new processes to ensure smooth transitions. Her staff note that if they are not having a good day or week that Angela is always there to listen and give advice, and that her office door is always open to have a heart-to-heart conversation. One of Angela’s staff members said, “I can’t imagine a better manager to work for. She is a true example of a servant leader.”