Dr. Susan Curling with Memorial Hermann Northeast Hospital was named 2014 Health Care Professional of the Year and Peggy Aalund, RN, with Lone Star College – Kingwood was named 2014 Nurse of the Year at the Lake Houston Area Chamber’s fourth annual Salute To Health Care Luncheon July 15 at The Overlook in Atascocita. The luncheon was presented by Kingwood Medical Center. The Salute To Health Care Luncheon honors the health care community and recognizes the great impact the industry has in the area.

Aalund has 21 years of experience as a nurse practitioner, 14 years of teaching experience at the college level and 13 years of experience as a college nursing program director. She serves as a remediation specialist for nursing and is the chair of the Lone Star College – Kingwood Nursing Evaluation Committee. She serves on the Lone Star College System Workload Committee, Curriculum Committee, Mentorship Committee, Simulation Committee and Faculty Senate. She is an Interdisciplinary Healthcare Honors Program faculty mentor and is responsible for developing the overseas Alpha Delta Nu Nursing Honor Society on campus. When Aalund is not serving or leading a committee, she’s teaching her students about obstetrics and pediatrics in the classroom.

Curling is Chief Medical Officer for Memorial Hermann Northeast, president of North Houston Anesthesiologists and is staff Anesthesiologist for Memorial Hermann Northeast, Memorial Hermann Specialty Hospital Kingwood and Kingwood Medical Center. Under her direction, Memorial Hermann Northeast has advanced dramatically in patient safety and quality. The hospital was named the Quality Gold Circle award winner in 2009 and the Press Ganey Top Improver winner in 2010. Curling spreads her time widely through various community involvement programs. She takes part in the Kingwood and Lake Houston Area chambers of commerce, is an elder and chair of the Missions Committee for First Presbyterian Church of Kingwood, she is on the Board of Health Museum and actively participates in blood donor centers around the Houston area.

Finalists for Nurse of the Year included: Aalund; Janice Pfitzer, staff nurse at Memorial Hermann Northeast; and Dianne Price, stroke coordinator Kingwood Medical Center. Finalists for Health Care Professional of the Year included: Dr. Bernard Gallacher, anesthesiologist at Kingwood Medical Center/North Houston Anesthesiologists; Dr. Doan Do, family medicine physician at Memorial Hermann Convenient Care Center; and Curling.

Nominations for the awards were received from across the Lake Houston Area representing individuals whose acts of service represent a display of dedication to excellence in their area of expertise beyond the scope of their jobs. The winner, selected by a committee of volunteers, will have displayed a commitment to their profession and community, serving as an inspiration to others in an effort to improve the quality of health care and discover new ways to assist those in need.


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