SALINAS, CA, May 10, 2018- Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System (SVMHS) is celebrating National Nurses and Hospital Weeks with a full schedule of activities for all staff including the announcement this week of Nurse and Employee of the Year. SVMHS honors its dedicated staff serving the community and each other with STAR values. STAR stands for Support, Teamwork, Accountability and Respect. The week of activities is centered around a Celebrating 65 theme. Salinas Valley Memorial opened its doors to the community sixty-five years ago on April 20, 1953.

“We cannot do what we do without our exceptional staff,” says Pete Delgado, President/CEO of Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System. “This week we are celebrating them and showing the appreciation we feel every day for the exceptional care they provide our patients, families and the community.”

Employees at SVMHS selected Najiba Caplan, RN as the 2018 Nurse of the Year. She is staff nurse II in Med Surg who joined Salinas Valley Memorial in 1999. Caplan was nominated for her compassion and exceptional medical care she provides patients and for being an excellent role model and motivator to new graduates and new hires.

“It’s an honor to be selected as nurse of the year,” says Najiba Caplan, RN. “I came to Salinas Valley Memorial twenty years ago from Philadelphia as a traveling nurse. After my assignment was over I chose to stay because Salinas Valley Memorial is truly a place of excellence and my third floor co-workers are amazing. I’m proud to work here.”

The SVMHS 2018 Employee of the Year is Renee Johnson. She is a Human Resources Specialist who joined Salinas Valley Memorial in 1992 and has spent most of her career in the Human Resources Department. She was recognized this week by her colleagues throughout the Healthcare System for the support she provides to all departments and for demonstrating excellent work ethic and great customer service. She is dedicated to matching the right talent to the right job and is often the first person an applicant or new employee will meet.

“I am honored to receive this recognition,” says Renee Johnson, Human Resources Specialist. “I love this organization and the people I work with and I’m proud to say I work here. I started my career at Salinas Valley Memorial 25 years ago and I look forward to another 25 years.”

Caplan and Johnson were selected during an extensive house wide nomination process. Other SVMHS staff nominated for Nurse of the Year were recognized with a Certificate of Appreciation and include Bryan Da Silva, RN, Stephanie Frizzell, RN, Alejandra Garcia, RN, Michael Jarschke, RN, and Raymundo Morales, RN.

Peer nominations for Employee of the Year include Joel Castillo, Divina Cortez, Timothy France, Janet Marcroft, Maria Ponciano-Tolentino and Ernest Reyes. Each received a Certificate of Appreciation.

Events celebrating the dedication and contributions of SVMHS employees kicked off Monday May 7th. In addition to an employee BBQ, there are other activities including National Nurses Week Cup Cake Celebration, a yogurt social, wall of appreciation and free neck and shoulder massages. National Nurses Week and Hospital Week festivities conclude Friday, May 11th.

Najiba Caplan, RN

Najiba Caplan, RN

Renee Johnson, Human Resources Specialist

Renee Johnson
Human Resources Specialist