Published on July 08, 2022

Bowen, NMMC Honored with Spero Award

Spero award picture

From left to right; Heather Bowen, NMHS system director, Organizational Performance; Mary Davis, Case Management; Lori Blansett, nurse practitioner, Palliative Care; Melody Poole, NMHS chief quality officer; Kayla Hood, nurse practitioner, Pulmonary Consultants and Ashley Owens McCluney, MORA hospital development coordinator

TUPELO, Mississippi— North Mississippi Health Services and several employees were recently honored by the Mississippi Organ Recovery Organization. 

North Mississippi Medical Center-Tupelo received a Spero Award for the Most Supportive Organ and Tissue Hospital. NMMC also achieved Platinum Status in the Hospitals for Hope Campaign as well as earned the most points for the bedside category.

Registered nurse Heather Bowen received the Spero Award for Most Supportive Ancillary or Healthcare Staff. The Spero Award recognizes MORA’s hospital partners, medical professionals and community partners who help make the Donate Life mission possible. 

Bowen, who lives in Guntown, serves as System Director of Organizational Performance and is responsible for overseeing accreditation, patient safety, process improvement, and infection control throughout NMHS. She joined the hospital staff in May 2003 and has worked in numerous roles, including staff nurse, operating room circulating nurse, clinical educator and clinical safety specialist before assuming responsibility for quality and organizational performance. 

Bowen is one of 14 Spero Award recipients. Each award was presented to individuals and organizations from areas throughout the state. The word Spero is Latin for “I hope.” The title was chosen to reflect the hope that organ and tissue donation brings to those in need of a lifesaving organ or a life healing tissue transplant. 

Bowen holds an associate degree in nursing from Itawamba Community College and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of North Alabama. She earned her master’s degree in nursing from UNA in December 2014. In 2011, Bowen won NMMC’s RN Excellence Award and was named to NMMC’s All Star Team. She was named Mississippi Nurses’ Association Nurse of the Year in 2012. 

In addition, several NMHS employees and departments were nominated for a Spero Award: 

· Advanced Practice Nurse or Nurse Manager--April Bell, Kayla Hood and Lori Blansett 

· Hospital Leadership—North Mississippi Medical Center Leadership 

· Most Supportive Ancillary or Healthcare Staff—David Senter, Mary Davis and Jamie McMillen

· Most Supportive Care Team—NMMC Surgical Services 

· Most Supportive Tissue and Organ Hospital—NMMC-Tupelo 

· Nurse Champion—Kelsey Bard, Alexis Siddell and John Morgan Ramsey 

· Physician Champion--Pulmonology Consultants

To learn more about organ and tissue donation, visit

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