MORA Recognizes Hospital and Community Partners with Annual Spero Awards

August 17, 2021

The Mississippi Organ Recovery Agency’s (MORA) Spero Awards recognize community and hospital partners that make organ, eye, and tissue donation a reality for those in need of life-saving and healing transplants. The word Spero is Latin for “hope,” chosen to reflect the hope made possible through the Gift of Life.

“While the last year has been unprecedented, we want to highlight and thank our healthcare heroes for their dedication to honoring the wishes of donors and donor families even during a pandemic, says Kevin Stump, MORA CEO. “Their amazing work translates into miracles for patients and their loved ones waiting on a second chance at life. On behalf of MORA and the Donate Life community, we say, ‘Thank you’.”

Spero Video

2021 Spero Award recipients:

  • Advanced Practice Nurse/Nurse Manager- Lindsey Tatum, University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • Community Faith Leader—Mark Gilbert, University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • Donation Advocate—Mary Margaret Hyer, 2020 and 2019 Miss Mississippi
  • Hospital Leadership—Brad Polk, Merit Health Central
  • Most Supportive Ancillary or Healthcare Staff – Ashley McClain, Portable Medical Diagnostics
  • Most Supportive Care Team—SICU, University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • Most Supportive Coroner—Judy Evans, Copiah County
  • Most Supportive Mortuary Services—Great Jackson Mortuary
  • Most Supportive Organ & Tissue Hospital—Memorial Hospital at Gulfport
  • Most Supportive Tissue Hospital—Copiah County Medical Center
  • Nurse Champion- Jevon Harper, University of Mississippi Medical Center ER
  • Physician Champion—Dr. Joseph Doherty, University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • Storyteller Award—Leyla Goodsell, Entergy  
  • Volunteer—Kimberly Cooley, Duck Hill
  • Business Partner—Marty’s Pharmacy

The Mississippi Lions Eye Bank (MLEB) also presented its Gift of Sight Award to the St. Dominic Hospital and its Partner in Vision Awards to Merit Health Central for their work in helping to facilitate sight saving corneal transplants.

2021 Spero Award nominees:

Advanced Practice Nurse or Nurse Manager of the Year

  • Breeze Chunn, North Mississippi Medical Center
  • April Bell, North Mississippi Medical Center
  • Morgan Short, Memorial Hospital at Gulfport
  • Carrie Clark, St. Dominic
  • Mackenzie Taylor, Memorial Physician Clinic

Donation Advocate

  • Fredrica (Angel) Meeks
  • Lt. Col. Ken Brown
  • Kimberly Cooley

Most Supportive Ancillary or Healthcare Staff

  • Miranda, Star, Vista & Morgeu Staff, UMMC
  • Cath Lab, UMMC
  • River Oaks Lab
  • Memorial Hospital at Gulfport
  • Children’s of MS Care Team
  • Marty’s Pharmacy
  • Michelle Crawford, UMMC
  • Tina Rogers, Merit River Region
  • Sandra Donald, UMMC
  • Mary Davis, NMMC
  • Cara Williams, Children’s of Mississippi

Most Supportive Care Team

  • OR Staff, NMMC
  • Neuro ICU, St. Dominic

Most Supportive Coroner

  • Alan Gurley, Monroe County
  • Michael Hunt, Octibbeha County
  • Clayton Cobbler, Lauderdale County
  • Derek Turnage, Pearl River County
  • Carolyn Greene, Lee County

Most Supportive Hospital Leadership

  • Britt Crewse, UMMC
  • Wendy Barrilleaux, St. Dominic Hospital

Most Supportive Mortuary Services

  • Daniel Billiot, Greater Jackson Mortuary
  • Sebrell Funeral Home
  • First Choice Mortuary
  • Julian Vargas, Reimann Family Funeral Home

Most Supportive Organ and Tissue Hospital

  • North Mississippi Medical Center
  • University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • UMMC- Grenada
  • South Central Region Medical Center

Most Supportive Tissue Hospital

  • North Mississippi Medical Center
  • University of Mississippi Medical Center

Nurse Champion

  • Meida Sinclair, Forrest General Hospital
  • Kayla Hood, NMMC
  • Rachel Hanson, Merit Health Biloxi
  • Misty Summers, UMMC
  • Emily Wade, Children’s of Mississippi
  • Ben Davis, UMMC
  • Kelsey Smith, UMMC
  • Hannah Dennis, Ocean Springs Hospital
  • Colin Steenkamp, Memorial Hospital at Gulfport
  • Avery Burns, UMMC Sanderson
  • Paula Hayes, UMMC
  • Megan Bauerle, UMMC
  • Tracy Harbour, UMMC
  • Beth Alliston, Merit River Oaks
  • Dottie Bryan, St. Dominic
  • Stephen Sweeney, St. Domininc

Physician Champion

  • Dr. Joseph Bosarge, Memorial Hospital at Gulfport
  • Dr. Kevin Harbour, NMMC
  • Dr. Jhoclay See, NMMC
  • Dr. Jennifer Hong, Children’s of Mississippi
  • Dr. Craig Holstrom, Children’s of Mississippi
  • Dr. Jacob Graham, Forrest General Hospital
  • Dr. Jimmy Jones, St. Dominic
  • Dr. Duncan Donald, Forrest General Hospital
  • Dr. Kara Ward, Memorial Hospital at Gulfport
  • Dr. Hess Roberson, UMMC
  • Dr. Taylor Webb, UMMC

Storyteller of the Year

  • Zachary Carlisle, WTVA
  • WJTV
  • Jenni Vincent, Herald Mail Media
  • Allison Matthews, MSU Newspaper
  • Beth Bunch, Forrest Health Systems Media

Volunteer of the Year

  • Jennifer Holmes

Congratulations to all of the 2021 Spero Award recipients and nominees!