Kim Carstens receives 2019 Brown Foundation Award
Kim Carstens, a clinical nurse in Radiation Oncology at MD Anderson West Houston, is the recipient of the 2019 Brown Foundation Award for Excellence in Oncology Nursing. A selection committee representing MD Anderson clinical faculty, patient care administration and nursing staff reviewed award nominations submitted by candidates’ peers and patients. The $15,000 cash award, established by The Brown Foundation in 1982, is MD Anderson’s highest nursing honor.
On hand to offer congratulations at a November award ceremony were Rosanna Morris, chief operating officer; Carol Porter, D.N.P., senior vice president and chief nursing officer; and Ann Ziker and Ralph Abendshein of The Brown Foundation.
“Kim Carstens is the essence of all that The Brown Foundation Award represents,” says Porter. “We are delighted to congratulate her on receiving this prestigious honor and grateful to The Brown Foundation for providing this opportunity to recognize excellence in our nursing program.”
Over her 21-year career at MD Anderson, Carstens has worked in inpatient and outpatient nursing settings for pediatrics, radiation oncology and neurosurgery. Her colleagues say she provides each of her patients with knowledge and insight that can only come from years of clinical experience.
“I’ve had a unique career at MD Anderson, as I’ve been privileged to take care of both the very young and the very old,” says Carstens. “I have to pinch myself sometimes because even in difficult times, I find joy in it all — joy in a smile, joy in holding a hand, joy in listening to someone’s story and joy in showing compassion.”
Finalist Nichole Cruz, a senior research nurse in Leukemia, also received recognition for delivering exceptional patient care and making significant contributions to MD Anderson’s nursing program. Since arriving at MD Anderson five years ago, Cruz says she finds daily inspiration in the diversity, talents, leadership and commitment of her colleagues and the opportunity to constantly grow and evolve. Her peers describe her as knowledgeable, organized, detail-oriented, compassionate and a true team player.