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Meet the latest L.O.V. honorees

Each day, we see colleagues doing amazing things that reflect our NAH Values. Colleagues doing outstanding work are nominated for the L.O.V., or "Living Our Values," Award. A committee of NAH colleagues from across the system reviews all nominations to select monthly honorees and quarterly champions.

The following L.O.V. honorees distinguished themselves by living NAH Values – show compassion; do amazing work; respect differences, build community; and be better together. Their dedication to these values builds and maintains NAH’s reputation among colleagues and throughout the communities we serve.


Jason Abdin, trauma tech with FMC’s Emergency Department

Value: Show Compassion

A veteran experiencing homelessness came in for help on a cold night. This man, well-known to the Emergency Department, was infested with bedbugs, lice and scabies – and his mental illness was making him unable to properly care for himself. Jason gowned up and went into the patient’s room to help him completely cover himself in cream to kill the bugs; going so far as to massage the cream into the patient’s very matted hair and beard. Jason knew this man would not be able to return to a safe place like Flagstaff Shelter Services or the Mission unless he was successfully decontaminated, which would have put him at risk for hypothermia or even death if he was forced to camp outdoors.

The entire time he was in the room with the patient, Jason remained reassuring and kind. Never did he make the patient feel dirty or embarrassed by his situation, and he provided care without complaint or hesitation. Thanks to Jason for his rare compassion, which makes a huge difference in the lives of the people we serve.


Jill Austin, physician assistant with FMC’s Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit

Value: Do Amazing Work!

Jill felt that those recovering from heart or lung surgery needed an extra measure of comfort and safety, so she embarked on a self-directed project to create heart-shaped pillows for patients to hold when they cough, sneeze, or just need something soft to cling to. The pillows, besides being soothing and pretty, can also protect incisions from re-opening. Each pillow is unique, so patients can pick out the perfect one that speaks to them.

Because Jill donates the pillows, the CVICU does not have to purchase them – making this a cost-saving measure as well as a compassionate one. Thanks to Jill for using her time and amazing talents to spark an idea and make it a reality for our cardiovascular surgery patients.

Jill and her pillows were recently featured in the Arizona Daily Sun


Gustav “Bud” Clark, paramedic flight base coordinator with Guardian Air

Value: Be Better Together

Bud recognized a great need – no air medical resource on the Hopi reservation – and worked diligently in partnership with the tribe to fill it. The process took nearly a year, but Guardian Air Transport eventually opened a base at the Hopi Healthcare Center in November of 2017. It has become one of our busiest bases and many critical patients have survived or had improved outcomes due to the rapid response. No longer does HHC have to transport a large volume of patients out due to limited capabilities.

Thanks to Bud for looking to improve care delivery in a critical access area, opening dialogue with those who could help make it happen, and enabling Guardian to save many precious lives.


Paul Giambalvo, mobile technology architect with FMC’s IT Department

Value: Do Amazing Work!

Paul knew the children in the Pediatric Unit and the Emergency Department on Christmas Eve would want to see Santa traveling through the night – so he repurposed some old iPads to make it happen. Our young patients were able to use the iPads to watch the NORAD Santa tracker and experience some magical holiday joy in difficult circumstances.

Thanks to Paul for taking on extra work and going above and beyond to provide this amazing gift to those who otherwise might not have had a merry Christmas.


Lori Smithson, director of VVMC’s Patient Care and Surgical Services

Value: Show Compassion

When a colleague lost a beloved family member, Lori worked with others to ensure flowers were delivered to the out-of-town funeral service. She then drove to the service to offer personal support. Lori was very private about this, as she is about all her selfless acts of service, but her compassion and consideration was deeply felt and greatly appreciated.

Thanks to Lori for the individualized caring she shows so many colleagues behind the scenes.

Learn more about the L.O.V. program.