President's Award

The President’s Award is presented in recognition of extraordinary service to AMSN. It has been established in honor of the Past Presidents of AMSN.

This award is given to an individual who consistently volunteers his or her time and has made significant outstanding contributions to assist AMSN in achieving its strategic goals.


L-R Andrea Melendez, MSN, RN, CHTP, HTCP, HSMI, RM,
Jill Arzouman, DNP, RN, ACNS, BC, CMSRN at the
2016 AMSN Annual Convention.

Andrea (Andie) Melendez, MSN, RN, CHTP, HTCP, HSMI, RM

Andrea Melendez, is a Clinical Nurse Specialist at Baltimore Washington Medical Center, Baltimore, MD. She served as a former Chairperson of the AMSN Clinical Practice Committee, and Associate Clinical Representative to the Alliance to Advance Patient Nutrition.

As a member of AMSN since 2000, I have great passion around strengthening and improving the practice and confidence of the medical-surgical nurse. I have served as a volunteer unit member and chair of the Clinical Practice Committee and currently serve at the associate representative to the Alliance to Advance Patient Nutrition.

My commitment to AMSN is my passion. I would like to further my contribution to the field of medical-surgical nursing, and continue to heighten awareness and participation of medical-surgical nurses as the professional specialists we are.

I firmly stand behind the mission to promote excellence in medical-surgical nursing, and believe that the medical-surgical nurses are a power to be acknowledged and respected.

My goal is to erase the words "I am just a medical-surgical nurse" from our membership and all medical-surgical nurses worldwide.

There is no nursing specialty that is not built on the foundation of medical and surgical nursing, strengthening and expanding assessment, critical thinking and performance improvement through analysis and application of evidence based practice.

With medical surgical nursing being the foundation for all nursing care, my goals include building the confidence and professional presentation of our colleagues to use their "powerful voice" in identifying areas of opportunity and the solutions to address those opportunities, with the ultimate outcome of EXCELLENT patient care.


L-R Jill Arzouman, DNP, RN, ACNS, BC, CMSRN and Lynne
Connelly, PhD, RN, at the 2015 AMSN Annual Convention.

Lynne Connelly, PhD, RN

Associate Professor and Director of Nursing, Benedictine College, Atchison, KS.

This award recognizes the extraordinary service of an AMSN volunteer. It is given to an individual who consistently volunteers their time, has served in a leadership role in the organization, and has made significant contributions to assist AMSN in achieving its strategic goals.

The recipient of this year’s President’s Award is Dr. Lynne Connelly. Lynne has more than 26 years of experience as an RN with about 20 of those years practicing in med-surg. She has been a member of AMSN since 2005.

Lynne began her career as an AMSN volunteer immediately and has served in some capacity since joining the association. Her passion for research is evident in her volunteer activities.

She was a member of the Research committee for two years and then proceeded to chair the unit for another three years. She has also served as Research Editor for the MEDSURG Nursing Journal. Her other volunteer activities include serving as an AMSN PRISM Award Criteria Reviewer and a reviewer for the AMSN Scope of Practice Research proposals. A recent activity has been authoring a module in the Clinical Leadership Development Program. She has been a consistent AMSN volunteer for more than a decade.

Lynne’s goal is to provide tools and mentoring so any nurse can understand, apply and conduct evidence based practice and research. She worked with many researchers to improve their study so that they could apply for research funding and she was never too busy to provide feedback and encouragement.

Dr. Connelly is most deserving of this award.


Recipient Linda Yoder, RN, MB, PhD, AOCN, FAAN.

Linda Yoder, RN, MB, PhD, AOCN, FAAN  

Linda Yoder has been a member of AMSN since 1994. She was a speaker at the 1993 where she did a presentation on bone marrow transplants.

She had such a great experience as a speaker and was welcomed so warmly, she joined AMSN and became a reviewer for the MEDSURG Nursing journal.

In 1996, Linda joined the MEDSURG Nursing editorial board. Just two short years later, Linda became a member of the Research Committee, advancing to co-chair in 2005 and chairperson in 2006. She served in that position until 2008.

Linda is a tireless coach for novice clinicians and researchers in writing for the journal. She has co-authored several published papers including two that won best writer awards for the first authors of those papers.

Linda served as the column author on cancer from 2006-2009. Pre-conference sessions on nursing research, evidenced based practice, grant-writing, and nursing leadership topics were also presented at the AMSN National Convention by Linda. 

In 2009, Linda was elected as a director on the AMSN Board and has served in the following capacities:

  • July 2011
    • AMSN Task Force for PRISM Award Development
    • AMSN Leadership Development Task Force
  • June 2009- July 2011
    • AMSN Liaison for Workplace Advocacy Task Force
    • AMSN Liaison for Nurses Nurturing Nurses Task Force
    • AMSN Task Force Leader for Affiliations Task Force

Linda is also involved with the Oncology Nursing Society, Association of Nurse Executives, American Nurses Association, as well as Sigma Theta Tau.

She was inducted as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing in 2004 and is the reviewer or editorial board member of several clinical and research journals.

She has conducted several research programs and has published more than 28 articles in multiple professional journals.

Additionally, Linda is the recipient of numerous awards, most recently:            

  •'s GEM (Giving Excellence Meaning) Award, sponsored by Nursing Notes by Johnson & Johnson, the Campaign for Nursing's Future, 2013
  • SNRS (Southern Nursing Research Society) Mid-Career Researcher Award, 2013

While all of this is impressive, the most important thing she has done, in my opinion, is for AMSN, med-surg nursing, health care, and the public at large – brought evidence-based research supported healthcare to the forefront of our specialty.

She has done this in a down-to-earth, practical, easy-to-understand way that was accessible to all. She is able to communicate this information so that everyone in the room, from the Ph.D. to the new graduate nurse understands and begins to share her passion.

What a med-surg treasure! Congratulations, Linda.


(L-R) Recipient Kathleen Lattavo, MSN, RN, CNS-MS, CMSRN,
RNBC, ACNS-BC, and Kathleen Singleton, MSN RN CNS CMSRN.

Kathleen Singleton, MSN RN CNS CMSRN

Kathleen Singleton, MSN RN CNS CMSRN, is the 2013 recipient of AMSN's Presidents Award. Kathleen has been a member of AMSN for over 18 of her 21 years as a med-surg nurse, with nearly every one of those years spent in service to the organization.

She is currently a clinical nurse specialist at Fairview Hospital of the Cleveland Clinic.

Kathleen has served as a committee member, task force leader, and member of the Board of Directors, Treasurer, and President of AMSN. Under her leadership as president, our new strategic plan was formulated, a step in the direction of AMSN becoming better known as a specialty nursing organization.

This legacy of leadership continues on as the mission, vision and values of AMSN serve the medical surgical nurse both in professional practice and personal growth.

Her legacy of leadership spans to more than 10 different committees. Kathy has been an active member of her Northeast Ohio local chapter serving in a number of roles.

Kathy began her national AMSN activities in the Clinical Practice Committee in 1998.

She has also served on the Chapter Development Committee, the Foundation Committee, the Nominating Committee, the Nominations Process task force, and the MEDSURG Nursing Journal Editorial Board.

Immediately prior to her term as president, Kathy served as AMSN Treasurer.

Kathy continues her work for AMSN as an ambassador and member of the AMSN PRISM Award™ task force.

Kathleen’s passion for the specialty of medical surgical nursing and her sense of humor are known to all whom have had the opportunity to know and work with her in the organization.

Some of her compassion was evident in the articles written for the newsletter and MEDSURG Nursing Journal. Kathy consistently demonstrates compassion and commitment to her patients and colleagues, whether delivering direct patient care or when she is working in the role as a mentor.

Kathy exemplifies the compassion to anyone who comes into contact with her, maintaining a connection to the spirit of the med-surg nurse who has the desire to move forward. She remains committed to AMSN as “her” organization in nursing, tirelessly giving of her time and talent, at times before she is even asked.

Congratulations, Kathy.

Find out more about the President’s Award.


(L-R) : Recipient Marlene Roman, MSN, RN, ARNP, CMSRN,
and Sandy Fights, MS, RN, CMSRN, CNE.

Marlene Roman, MSN, RN, ARNP, CMSRN

The 2012 President’s Award was presented to Marlene Roman, MSN, RN, ARNP, CMSRN. For a number of years, she has served and been a frequent voice for AMSN. She is a charter member of AMSN, joining in 1991.

She began her service at the national level in 1995 serving two terms as Secretary. She was then elected to the presidency and was our first President to serve a two year term.

Marlene’s commitment to medical-surgical nursing was further evidenced in her efforts to bring certification to AMSN and subsequently establishing the Medical-Surgical Nursing Certification Board (MSNCB).

This pivotal role included serving as the chair of the certification task force and then as the first president of MSNCB.

While Marlene was committed to moving certification forward, she continued to work to connect medical-surgical nurses with quality education information and association news in her role as Editor of MedSurg Matters! She was instrumental in the redesign of the newsletter as well as providing CNE in every issue.

Most recently Marlene has served as a senior member of the Nominations Committee. Additionally, she has represented AMSN and MSNCB at various meetings promoting both organizations for a number of years. As a result, Marlene was an obvious choice to lead our Ambassador group, whose responsibility it is to exhibit and promote AMSN and MSNCB at other professional nursing organizations’ conventions.

Congratulations, Marlene.

Find out more about the President’s Award.