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Brewster to Be Honored as Health Care Hero


The Daily Record has selected Dr. Meena Brewster, St. Mary’s County health officer, to receive a 2020 Health Care Hero Award.

As home to several renowned medical and federal institutions, Maryland is a national leader in health care research and development. The Daily Record’s Health Care Heroes Awards honor those organizations and individuals who have made an impact on the quality of health care in the state. The winners were selected by an outside panel of health care experts.

The award categories are:

  • Advancements and Innovation in Health Care, which recognizes organizations that have made significant strides within the health care community
  • Community Outreach/Education Hero, an award that honors individuals and organizations that have helped the community they serve by providing support and education
  • Workplace Wellness Program, which honors a company that has created a work environment for their employees focusing on wellness
  • Nurse of the Year, which honors nurses who have performed in exemplary ways
  • Nurse Practitioner of the Year, which honors nurse practitioners whose job performance is considered exemplary by patients and peers
  • Physician of the Year, an award that honors physicians whose job performance is considered exemplary by patients and peers
  • Lifetime Achievement, an honor that recognizes individuals in the health care community whose body of work in their careers makes them stand out from their peers

“Our Health Care Heroes are often described as miracle workers for making a positive impact on lives and creating change,” said Suzanne Fischer-Huettner, publisher of The Daily Record. “The individuals and organizations being honored are truly outstanding for their work with patients, families, the industry, and our community. We at The Daily Record salute their accomplishments.”

“Nothing in public health is done in isolation. This is most evident during times of crisis, including the current COVID-19 pandemic,” Dr. Brewster said. “I’m so grateful for our tenacious public health team, partners, and community that have pulled together to fight this battle and forge bonds stronger than what lies ahead.”

Due to COVID-19 and social distancing requirements, the 2020 Health Care Heroes Awards will be presented at a June 25 online event. Each of the winners will be celebrated for their achievements through video storytelling. For the honorees in the Advancements and Innovation in Health Care category, each innovation will be showcased. Guests will have the opportunity to participate in the program with their congratulations and cheers using social media platforms from their homes or offices. For tickets, go to

During this time of COVID-19, we also want to honor the heroes battling the illness. Individuals can be nominated at the following link:

Winners will be profiled in a special magazine that will be inserted into the June 26 issue of The Daily Record.

The event partner of The Daily Record’s 2020 Health Care Heroes Awards is the Maryland Hospital Association.

For more information about sponsorships and tickets for The Daily Record’s 2020 Health Care Heroes Awards, visit or call 443-524-8161.

2020 Health Care Heroes Awards

Advancements and Innovation in Health Care:

  • Johns Hopkins Medicine, Tobacco Treatment Clinic
  • Keswick, Wise and Well
  • LifeBridge Health, Virtual Hospital
  • Saint Agnes HealthCare, Screening Brief Intervention Referral to Treatment (SBIRT)
  • Community Outreach/Education Hero:
  • CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (CareFirst)
  • LifeBridge Health
  • Maryland Citizens Health Initiative Health Care for All Coalition
  • MedStar Harbor Hospital
  • MileOne Autogroup
  • Workplace Wellness Program:
  • Kaiser Permanente

Nurse of the Year:

  • Ashley Keating, Carroll Hospital
  • Kevin Mempin, Kaiser Permanente
  • Nia Williams, Kaiser Permanente
  • Nurse Practitioner of the Year:
  • Susan Carroll, Lorien Health Services
  • Marianne Fingerhood, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing
  • Beverly Ruiz, Gilchrist
  • Brigit VanGraafeiland, Johns Hopkins School of Nursing

Physician of the Year:

  • Dr. Robert Atlas, Mercy Medical Center
  • Dr. Marc Gertner, General Surgery Specialists LifeBridge Health
  • Dr. Ashley Kinder, Ascension Saint Agnes Healthcare
  • Dr. Elizabeth Nichols, Maryland Proton Treatment Center
  • Dr. Aziza Shad, Sinai Children’s Hospital

Lifetime Achievement:

  • Dr. John Herzenberg, LifeBridge Health
  • W. Anthony Riley, Gilchrist
  • Elizabeth Tanner, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing

COVID-19 Heroes:

  • Dr. Jason Birnbaum, University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Health
  • Dr. Meenakshi Brewster, St. Mary’s County Health Department
  • Karen Doyle, University of Maryland Medical Center
  • Dr. Jason Heavner, University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center
  • Dr. Lisa Maragakis, Johns Hopkins Medicine
  • Dr. Carole Miller, Ascension St. Agnes Cancer Institute
  • Michele Mullen, University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center
  • Kim Peterson & Heather Thomas, University of Maryland Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Dr. Farzaneh (Fazi) Sabi, Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group and Kaiser Permanente
  • Nikki Highsmith Vernick, Horizon Foundation


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