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  • MSN: University of Hartford (West Hartford, Conn.)
  • BSN: Central Connecticut State University (New Britain, Conn.)
  • RN DIPLOMA: Ona M. Wilcox School of Nursing (Middletown, Conn.)


  • Associate Professor, Assistant Professor, Full-Time Lecturer, and Nursing Lab Instructor, Three Rivers Community College (Norwich, Conn.)
  • Staff Nurse, Satellite Emergency Department, Cardiac Rehabilitation, Operating Room, Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, Critical Care Unit, Coronary Care Unit, Middlesex Health - Shoreline Medical Center (Middlesex, Conn.).
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation Nurse, Middlesex YMCA (Middletown, Conn.)
  • Staff Nurse, Hartford Hospital (Hartford, Conn.)

Current role/title:

Professor of Nursing, Three Rivers Community College
Also: Center for Teaching Committee, Connecticut Community College Nursing Program Committee, College Congress, NLN Ambassador, Gen Ed Assessment Team, Curriculum Development – Concept-Based Curriculum Work Committee. State Nursing Education Taskforce.

What Professor Ashton has to say:

“I am both honored and humbled to receive the Nurse’s Touch Award. It is a privilege to be nominated by a coworker for making a difference to the students I teach. I know that I am in good company as a nurse educator. We all strive to help every student become successful. We use numerous methods from tried-and-true basics to newer evidence-based practices to meet a variety of learning needs. I feel that, as an educator, I am also a learner, continuously stretching in new ways to improve in my various roles in the classroom, clinical, and lab settings. I appreciate both the recognition and the opportunity for continued growth that this award offers.”

What peers have to say:

“Teri has a direct yet empathetic approach when dealing with students in the classroom, small groups, and individually. This direct style extends to her communication style with colleagues. As a new educator, I grew to depend on Teri for direction. I trusted that she would be objective with her honest feedback. I am blessed to consider her one of my mentors here at the college.” — Carol Emmerthal







  • DNP: California State University, Northern Consortium (Fresno/San Jose)
  • MSN-Ed: University of Phoenix
  • BSN: California State University (Fresno)


34 years of experience including positions as:

    • Staff Nurse, Assistant Nurse Manager, Preceptor, Educator

20 years’ experience in Emergency Department, including as:

    • Project Manager for Emergency Department Expansion Project in 2001.

Current role/title:

Associate Professor, Point Loma Nazarene University

What Dr. Montejano has to say:

“Words cannot express how honored and humble I feel for receiving such an amazing award. I began teaching and mentoring in the emergency department years ago and, as the years progressed, the passion for teaching, guiding, and facilitating the growth of future nurses filled me with excitement as I thought of creative ways to make learning enjoyable. I have always strived to create engaging techniques, which allow the students to retain the information learned and at the same time have fun while participating. The meaning of this award leaves me speechless and has truly touched my heart in a way I cannot express, except for tears of gratitude. Attending the National Nurse Educator Summit is the icing on the cake as this will provide attendees innovative approaches to guide students to think critically, such as with simulation. The information will be shared with others to build a strong foundation for the future generations of nurses.”

What peers have to say:

“Having worked with Dr. Montejano in both clinical and teaching roles, I can wholeheartedly endorse that she is a true professional nurse; in fact, she is a nurse’s nurse. She always upholds the ethics and values of the profession and pushes herself to be the best nurse she can be … Dr. Montejano is a natural leader and role model in all that she does. Both as an instructor and a student advisor, she guides students in what it means to be a leader through communication and role modeling.” — Lynn Visser



Lynda Poly-Droulard, EdD, MSN, MEd, RN, CNE





  • EdD: Oakland University (Rochester Hills, Mich.)
  • MSN: Oakland University
  • MEd: Wayne State University (Detroit)
  • BSN: Oakland University


    • Faculty member, Oakland University (Rochester Hills, Mich.), since 2002.
    • Also: Certified nurse educator through the National League for Nursing.
    • Areas of expertise: Cardiac and emergency department nursing; nursing education with the use of simulation as a teaching/learning methodology
    • Research focus: Caring science in patient care and the value of holistic admissions at the university level.

Current role/title:

Adjunct Assistant Professor

What Dr. Poly-Droulard has to say:

“Receiving the Nurse’s Touch Award is a career-defining achievement for me. My goal to leave a footprint on the hearts of my students was realized by receiving the award. I love my students with my whole heart and soul, as do my colleagues. We all want to pass on our love for the nursing profession. I tell my students to ‘Be that one nurse — the one nurse that made the difference in the patient’s care that they will never forget.’ Nurses have the sacred responsibility and ability to touch lives, change lives, and respect life. My primary goal in nursing education is to — obviously — educate to the best of my ability, but most of all it is to demonstrate kindness, love, respect, and compassion. As educators, we must role model behaviors of the professional nurse at all times so the next generation of nurses will do so as well. I knew the meaning of 'Camelot' as a young nurse: to deliver excellent collaborative patient care with love. Though many years have passed since my early days as a nurse, love and kindness never change. I am truly grateful for the Nurse's Touch Award. Perhaps I did make a difference. Most importantly, it was my colleague that made the biggest difference, Dr. Munyan. Dr. Munyan showed love to me with the nomination. I will never forget her words: ‘We have to celebrate each other.’ Dr. Munyan exemplifies love and kindness in the nursing profession!”

What peers have to say:

“I believe Lynda is a truly honorable educator. While she wants success for all of her students, she maintains academic rigor and encourages our students in working hard toward their goals. Lynda and I have had many conversations about her desire to develop nurses that are strong and capable of the work ahead of them, and that this sometimes means having to struggle in learning the science of nursing. We agree that sometimes this struggle is positive and character-building if we help students in processing it.” — Kristen Munyan



Danielle Quintana, MSN, RN, CNOR

University of Houston (Texas) College of Nursing




  • MSN: Carey Edwards School of Nursing, Thomas Edison State University (Trenton, N.J.)
  • Post-Master’s Nurse, Educator Certificate: Carey Edwards School of Nursing, Thomas Edison State University
  • BSN: Carey Edwards School of Nursing, Thomas Edison State University
  • Certification of Operating Room Nursing (Emeritus)
  • Current student: Texas Woman’s University, Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing Program


  • Full-time faculty member teaching fundamentals, pediatrics and perioperative nursing
  • Clinical career: Perioperative nurse, specialty pediatric neurosurgery, former neurosurgical clinical coordinator

Current role/title:

Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Houston College of Nursing

What Professor Quintana has to say:

“I am humbly grateful to my UH College of Nursing colleagues for this nomination. As educators, we have the great responsibility of passing on critical tools to the next generation of nurses. Faculty use our positive influence to motivate, inspire and mentor students to reach their full potential, knowing they will be next in line to transform and innovate health care.”

What peers have to say:

  • “Professor Quintana is an outstanding professional nurse that is making a real difference with our next generation of nursing students. She is a person of integrity and consistently encourages students to be the best professional possible … She is currently enrolled in the PhD program at Texas Woman's University and is exploring ways to increase morale courage and reduce moral residue among nurses and nursing students. As a certified perioperative nurse she knows the true courage it takes to advocate for patients in high-stress areas.” — Patricia Schrader
  • “Danielle’s passion for excellence is evident by her approach to student success. Her student-centered approach encourages our students to value professionalism and accountability, which are guiding principles in our profession. She leads by example and serves as an excellent resource to both students and faculty.” — Shermel Edwards-Maddox
  • “Professor Danielle Quintana exemplifies all the things this award celebrates. Her commitment to developing the profession of nursing through students was demonstrated just today. A very hard-working student completed an exam that determined if she moved forward to graduation or not. At the end of the exam, in a room full of professors, as the student saw her grade, this student walked directly to Professor Quintana and melted in her arms crying saying, ‘This is all because you believed in me.’ That is excellence!” — Tracy McManaman-Bridges


2018 Winners

Ashley Graves, Mount Carmel College of Nursing

Maryann Hogan, University of Massachusetts

Anita Stephen, University of Florida

Colleen Nevins, California State University

2017 Winners

Katherine Carter, Louisiana State University

Kristie Davis, Trinity Washington University

Lori Hill, Mount Carmel College Of Nursing

Peter Miskin, De Anza Community College

2016 Winners

Patti McFadden, Louisiana Tech University

Diana Patterson, Yuba College

Tara A. Benko, Mount Aloysius College

Naomi Jones, Ivy Tech Community College

2015 Winners

Danielle Brownlee, Jones County Junior College

Patty Beamer, Wichita State University

Alene Homan, Clearfield County Career And Technology Center

Anne Stark, Santa Barbara City College

2014 Winners

Dr. Terri Liberto, La Roche College

Stephen Campbell, Rasmussen College School of Nursing

Julie Baldwin, Missouri Western State University

Raelene Brooks, Mt. San Jacinto College

2013 Winners

Cathy Snelson, Kent State University

Mary Murphy, Fairfield University

Debra Allen, Chester Career College

Ann Marie Kopeikin, Santa Barbara City College

2012 Winners

Rebecca Harrell, Northwestern State University – Cenla Campus

Nancy Moore, South Tech Academy

Kathryn Rexrode, Salve Regina University

Kathleen Rogers, Ursuline College

Margaret Sherer, Portland Community College

Nominations for the 2021 Nurse’s Touch Award are now closed. Please watch for the announcement of honorees in early 2022!