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2006 Lane Adams Quality of Life Award Recipients

Eduardo Bruera, MD
Professor and chair, Department of Palliative Care & Rehabilitation Medicine, The University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston
During his training in Argentina, Bruera recognized a lack of good information on palliative care in oncology. He has spent much of the past 20 years addressing that gap, developing changes in clinical practice, conducting critical studies, and developing better tools to assess and treat the symptoms of cancer. He is now recognized as a worldwide leader in palliative medicine and as a top contributor to research in the field.

Isabel Chiu, CPA
Cofounder, ACS Northern California Chinese Unit, Milpitas, CA
As the primary caregiver for her father as he battled multiple myeloma, Chiu discovered an urgent need for a coordinated effort to serve cancer patients and their families in the Chinese-American community. In 1994, she rented a tiny office in Fremont, CA, and with no staff and a handful of volunteers began providing specialized patient services. The office has helped more than 1,400 patients to date.

Martha “Meg” Gaines, JD, LLM
Patient advocate, law professor, and director, Center for Patient Partnerships, Madison, WI
As a cancer survivor, Gaines has relied on the skills she developed to advocate for her own best care to make sure those who often "fall through the cracks" of society are given justice and good care. After her experience, she collaborated with other faculty in the UW schools of Medicine and Nursing to create a patient advocacy organization at the University of Wisconsin Law School dedicated to bringing patient empowerment and self-advocacy skills to the place where law, medicine, and cancer survival meet.

Brenda Jo Gillund, RN, MSN
Oncology resource nurse/case manager, Altru Cancer Center, Grand Forks, ND
Gillund was nominated for her compassionate care, her professional skill, and her "let's make it happen" attitude that replaces patients' fears with answers, confidence, and hope.

Susan Guckenberg, MSW, LCSW
Oncology social worker, Henrico Doctor's Hospital, Richmond, VA
Colleagues note Guckenberg's unique spirit that evokes a feeling of safety that helps patients reach out to her as a caregiver. Caregiver to both her parents during their cancer battles, Guckenberg has also created a local chapter of a nationwide ovarian cancer organization, facilitates three support groups at her own hospital, and is regarded as "a gem," and priceless to her cancer center as a role model for cancer caring.

Andre Metzelaars, RN, BSN, OCN
Oncology nurse, Carle Foundation Physicians, Mattoon, IL
As a chemotherapy nurse, Metzelaars manages to bring comfort, humor, and professionalism to patients during a most difficult time while exhibiting a level of passion and compassion

Peggy Yarnell Nikolajski, MSN,CRNP, AOCN
Oncology nurse practitioner, UPMC Cancer Centers, Pittsburgh, PA
Patient care is at the center of all of Nikolajski's work. She has developed policies and procedures for oncology nurses that are now used to teach in other centers, while going beyond the call of duty to personally make sure patients' personal, and even financial, needs are met. She administers a foundation fund that has helped patients pay their bills, volunteers for the society, and developed a community oncology program at her hospital that includes tumor registry work, research initiatives, and educational programs for hospital staff.

Sharon “Shari” Showalter, RN, BSN
Nurse case manager, Mercy Women's Services, Mason City, IA
Charged with shepherding all new breast cancer patients through the maze of treatment issues at a northern Iowa cancer center, Showalter has been called a tireless patient advocate who develops strong relationships with patients and arms them with empowering information. Patients call her an inspiration, a beacon of light, and a caregiver who makes every patient feel valued and hopeful.

Julia K. Silver, MD
Director, RESTORE Breast Cancer Rehabilitation Program at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, Framingham, MA; assistant professor, Harvard Medical School, Department of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation.
An award-winning writer and the author/editor of more than a dozen books, Silver's latest book is "After Cancer Treatment: Heal Faster, Better, Stronger" (Johns Hopkins University Press, September 2006). Silver created a multi-disciplinary program to improve breast cancer patients' quality of life using an integrated approach including rehabilitation, nutrition, and lifestyle changes to address the specific needs of these patients. Patients credit her as being a doctor who listens and understands that treatment for cancer must go beyond chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery.

Eden Stotsky
Health educator, Johns Hopkins Colon Cancer Center, Baltimore, MD
Though neither a nurse nor a doctor, Stotsky is considered an expert in the field of patient education for colon cancer. A survivor herself, Stotsky has dedicated her work to helping patients navigate their cancer journey, and give them true hope they can continue to lead fulfilling lives.