McCarthy Wins Lakeshore ATHENA

October 13, 2006
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SPRING LAKE — As a successful businesswoman, community volunteer

and mentor to her peers and other women, ATHENA award-winner Nancy McCarthy embodies the three major components for which the award stands, said Claudia Berry, chairwoman of the program.

McCarthy, director and president of the Hackley Visiting Nurse Service and Hospice in Muskegon, is the second recipient of the Lakeshore ATHENA award, which is given jointly by the Grand Haven, Ferrysburg and Spring Lake chamber, the Holland chamber and the Muskegon chamber of commerce. The awards luncheon took place Oct. 10 at the Trillium Banquet and ConferenceCenter

“I would like to commend the chambers’ regional approach, done so well,” said Berry, vice president at Huntington National Bank. “Our nominees represent our collaboration, as do our attendees.”

As one of 22 nominees for the award, McCarthy said she was honored by the award.

“I’m just so thankful,” she said. “It’s just so humbling.”

McCarthy has been in the nursing profession for 36 years, teaching at the Hackley School of Nursing, GrandValleyStateUniversity, HopeCollege and CalvinCollege. She also has been leading the Visiting Nurse Services and Hospice for 20 years, bringing the organization from a staff of 15 people and a budget of $500,000, to a staff of 180 with a $10 million budget.

During her time with the organization, she has initiated specialty programs such as in-home hospice and the community’s first hospice residence. She also earned her nurse practitioner certification in 2000.

In addition to her work with Visiting Nurse Service and Hospice, McCarthy is active in the community, mentoring students and serving on several boards, including the Bluebird Cancer Retreat in Grand Haven, the HackleyLakeshoreHospital in Shelby, the Michigan Home Health Association and the 501 Alliance

“I guess I just would like people to remember me as a person who cares,” she said.

McCarthy said she has had many supportive women in her life as mentors, and she would like other women to know they can succeed in whatever they try to achieve.

“They’re capable of anything their heart desires,” she said. “It’s just a matter of believing in yourself and letting the universe work for you, because it really does if you let it.”

Also honored at the event were five scholarship recipients: Kelly J. Dennis, Marge Stoika and Laura Thompson, of BakerCollege; Anita Van Til of GrandValleyStateUniversity; and the Rev. Yvette Johnson of CornerstoneUniversity. The scholarships are for women older than 30 working toward higher education degrees.    

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