Hospital's service award goes to foundation board member Poe

Friday, April 29, 2011
The Southeast Hospital Board of Trustees honored Pete Poe with the Special Service Award at Thursday evening's Southeast Hospital Association dinner. From left: Al Spradling III, chairman of the board of trustees; Poe; Debbie Linnes, president and CEO; Wayne Smith, vice president of human resources and development; and Jim Limbaugh, executive vice president of planning and business development. (Submitted photo)

SoutheastHEALTH celebrated the past year at its annual meeting of the Southeast Hospital Association Thursday night at the Show Me Center in Cape Girardeau.

The meeting, themed "A New Era," recognized excellence in employee service and medical achievement over the last year.

SoutheastHEALTH's board of trustees honored Pete Poe with the Special Service Award, recognizing Poe's contributions to not only SoutheastHEALTH but to the community. The award was presented to Poe by SoutheastHEALTH president and CEO Debbie Linnes.

Poe has served SoutheastHEALTH as a member of the Foundation Board of Directors since 1999 and chairs the Annual Support Committee. During 2010, nearly $200,000 was raised through various foundation events under Poe's leadership.

Poe also serves as president of the SEMO District Fair Association and as the executive director of the Missouri Association of Fairs and Festivals.

"It was a surprise, but I don't feel like I'm one of the heroes up there," Poe said. "The people that work in the hallways and rooms of the hospital are. It's a great group of people to work with; they're dedicated in what they do. They work at it 12 months a year, 52 weeks and 365 days, 24-7; they never quit."

Dr. E. Lee Taylor presented the crowd with a list of departments and physicians who helped Southeast Hospital receive high marks from HealthGrades, the nation's leading, independent health care ratings organization.

A crowd of more than 700 people was on hand as Linnes introduced a video presentation showcasing the recipients of the O.D. Niswonger Spirit of Southeast Award. Recipients were Gail Linamen, Shirley Followell, Beth Henson and the late Andy "L.Z." Elizade. Elizade's wife and children were present to receive his award.

The O.D. Niswonger Spirit of Southeast Award is named after Dave Niswonger, who was recognized for his 50 years of service to Southeast. He was on staff from 1961 to 1990, with 14 years as an administrator. After retirement, he has continued to serve as a member of the SoutheastHEALTH Foundation Board of Directors and as its chaplain.

SoutheastHEALTH celebrated a year of growth, with the opening of the Southeast Cancer Center, the formation of the Southeast Medical Group and the partnership with the newly named Southeast Health Center of Ripley County in Doniphan, Mo.

Linnes also thanked the staff of the Southeast Cancer Center for their efforts in moving into and opening the center.

"This was a team effort with one thing in mind -- our patients," she said.

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