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April 17, 2013

Meliora Awards 2013

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Institute for Music Leadership, Eastman School

Institute for Music

The Institute for Music Leadership was founded at the Eastman School in 2001 as a “virtual hub for creating, sharing, and implementing cutting-edge ideas and programs that will ensure the vitality and relevance of music in the 21st century.”

Led by director Ramon Ricker, senior associate dean for professional studies, the institute consists of several programs: the Catherine Filene Shouse Arts Leadership Program; the Center for Music Innovation and Engagement; the Orchestra Musicians Forum and websites and Polyphonic on Campus; and the Office of Careers and Professional Development.

Through a series of professional development events, online courses, and cutting-edge programs, the institute has created an environment that engages student musicians and challenges them to think more entrepreneurially about music.

Institute staff members “have exhibited an unusual entrepreneurial mindset, worked together as a team, galvanized support from other Eastman units, made remarkable strides in economizing resources, and energized the student body and the administration,” writes Douglas Lowry, the Joan and Martin Messenger Dean of the Eastman School of Music, in his nomination letter. “I cannot imagine a finer unified effort toward one of Eastman’s primary strategic causes, all attributable to a belief in common goals, good work, and a unified team spirit.” Learn more at

Wilmot Cancer Center Kaizen Team

The Wilmot Cancer Center Kaizen Team, a group of 17 representatives from all aspects of the cancer center, had one goal—to create a more patient-centered and patient-friendly experience at the Wilmot Cancer Center. The team—led by David Dougherty, a senior instructor of hematology and oncology—sought to reduce patient wait time, increase patient satisfaction scores, improve communications between the center’s clinical components, and establish and communicate clear expectations for patients and staff. Through improvements such as enhanced way-finding signage, the addition of new communication boards in the clinic area for better patient flow and tracking, the addition of new white boards in clinic areas, and the utilization of a new chemotherapy teaching video, patient satisfaction scores have improved substantially— from the 34th percentile in 2010 to the 73rd percentile at the end of 2012. The team is also credited with reducing costs by $4,300 annually by eliminating waste and inefficiencies. The initiative has since evolved into the Patient Family Center Care Council, which strives for continual improvement.

“The experience, insight, and devotion of this team toward this endeavor have been central to their success,” writes Aram Hezel, associate professor of medicine and liver and pancreatic cancer specialist at the cancer center, in a letter supporting the team’s nomination.

Jean Livingston, nurse manager, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

Jean LivingstonAs nurse leader of the newborn nursery and the neonatal intensive care unit—the largest inpatient unit at Strong Memorial Hospital—Jean Livingston is credited with leading efforts that have improved patient safety and the quality of clinical programs and strengthened staff development.

Colleagues say Livingston played a central role in the establishment of the NICU Family Advisory Committee, which aims to improve family-centered care in the unit and has resulted in happier patient families in the NICU. She also formed the NICU Council, which colleagues say has been crucial in improving staff satisfaction.

Livingston also led improvement efforts that were part of the NICU’s expansion in 2012 and she’s working with other hospital leaders to design a new single family room NICU, slated to open in 2015.

“Her perseverance, vision, and ideology for the NICU are more than mere assets. They are the very essence of the Meliora spirit,” writes Elizabeth Lattimore, administrative director for clinical services at Golisano Children’s Hospital, in a letter supporting Livingston’s nomination.

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