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Community Hospital Corporation Selects 2023 Dan Wilford Award Winner: Sally O’Connor, Montrose Regional Health

Plano, Texas (June 6, 2023) – Community Hospital Corporation (CHC) has announced Sally O’Connor as the 2023 winner of the Dan Wilford Award for Compassion and Community Service. O’Connor is director of Care Coordination for Montrose Regional Health, Montrose, CO, a hospital managed by CHC.

“Sally’s level of commitment to community service and the hospital has been truly outstanding,” said Jim Kendrick, CHC president and CEO. She was chosen as the national winner among 12 nominees. The award, named after Dan Wilford, a founding CHC board member and retired CEO of Memorial Hermann Healthcare System of Houston, Texas, represents outstanding care and remarkable concern for a community and its local hospital. Kendrick will co-present the award to O’Connor in September.

O’Connor was nominated by the Montrose Regional Health case management team and Sonya Hawkins, director of Emergency Services, who shared: “Sally demonstrates a commendable level of commitment to her colleagues, patients, and family members. Her compassion and energy positively impact everyone around her.”

O’Connor is often asked to assist with difficult Emergency Department discharges. As an example, O’Connor assisted in the care of a patient who required a higher level of care related to age, medical and psychiatric factors. These factors added a level of complexity to finding a receiving facility to adequately meet the patient’s and family’s needs. During the extended wait in the Emergency Department, she facilitated open communication with all members of the care team and worked tirelessly to find placement. The patient was ultimately transferred to a facility that met all the special care needs of this highly complex patient.

Hawkins added: “Sally’s compassion, energy, and enthusiasm are remarkable. She even advocates for patients and families beyond their stay at the hospital, a true example of her gifted nature in caring for others.”

Final nominees for the 2023 Dan Wilford Award included these highly qualified healthcare leaders:

  • Christine Lee, RN Charge Nurse, Arkansas Continued Care Hospital of Jonesboro, Jonesboro, Ark.
  • Kallie Totten, RN ICU, Baptist Hospitals of Southeast Texas, Beaumont, Texas
  • Sanpri Purdy-Porter, Physical Therapist, Carolinas ContinueCARE Hospital at Pineville, Charlotte, N.C.
  • Jennifer Peace, Certified Nurse Aide, ContinueCARE Hospital at Baptist Health Corbin, Corbin, Kentucky
  • Melissa Smith, RN Charge Nurse, ContinueCARE Hospital at Medical Center, Odessa, Texas
  • Monica Elrod, Respiratory Therapist, ContinueCARE Hospital at Hendrick Medical Center, Abilene, Texas
  • Chyrel Evans, Assistant Director of Patient Access, Huntsville Memorial Hospital, Huntsville, Texas
  • Kristi Rigsby, Vice President of Clinical Operations, North Texas Medical Center, Gainesville, Texas
  • Caroline Bogott, RN Family Birthing Center, Southwest Health System, Cortez, Colo.
  • Jocelynn Carroll, RN Charge Nurse, Tyler ContinueCARE Hospital, Tyler, Texas
  • Kim Mraz, then Director of Quality Management, current CNO, Yoakum Community Hospital, Yoakum, Texas

About Community Hospital Corporation – HELP WHERE HOSPITALS NEED IT®

Community Hospital Corporation owns, manages and consults with hospitals through CHC Hospitals, CHC Consulting and CHC ContinueCARE. Visit

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