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The Tidelands Health Newsroom

Published on March 06, 2014

Three GHS nurses achieve the (Palmetto) gold standard

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Georgetown, S.C. — Three nurses from Georgetown Hospital System have achieved the gold standard.

Lorie Stamper, BSN, RN, CCRN, Karen Hazzard, MSN, RN, NE-BC.
and Cheryl Kilbourne, MSN, RN are being recognized with Palmetto Gold Awards, the state’s highest honor for nursing excellence.

The award is given annually by the S.C. Nurses Association to 100 Palmetto State nurses who demonstrate excellence in nursing practice and commitment to the profession. Each hospital can nominate up to six nurses for the award.

Stamper, of Andrews, is a certified critical care nurse at Georgetown Memorial Hospital and is a member of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses. She has earned numerous recognitions from her colleagues at GMH, particularly for teaching and mentoring new and student nurses, and is active in community blood drives and health fairs.

Hazzard, nursing operations director at GMH, has practiced nursing for 21years. She represents the Seventh Congressional District on the S.C. State Board of Nursing, currently serving a four-year term. She is a member of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society Omicron Delta Chapter, American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), and is active in numerous community initiatives. 

Kilbourne, clinical director of Women’s and Children’s Services at Waccamaw Community Hospital, played a key role in WCH’s successful effort to earn the prestigious Baby-Friendly designation and achieve the Center of Excellence in Childbirth recognition from the Joint Commission in 2013. She is president of the South Carolina Perinatal Association and is active in the Birth Outcomes Initiative and the South Carolina Neonatal Consortium.   Kilbourne is also an adjunct faculty member at Horry Georgetown Technical College. 

Ann Waters, MSN, BSN, RN, GMH vice president of operations and GMH administrator, said the nursing staff at GHS is exemplary. “Nursing is a demanding profession that requires critical thinking skills, stamina and compassion,” Waters said. “There is no margin for error. In being selected as Palmetto Gold recipients, our nurses have joined an elite group and set a high standard for all of us.”

Pam Maxwell, BSN, RN, vice president of operations and WCH administrator, said she was proud of GHS nurses for their dedication and selflessness. “They are dedicated and work tirelessly to care for their patients,” Maxwell said. “They are smart, resourceful and compassionate, and they are so deserving of this award.” 

The recipients will be honored at a formal event next month in Columbia. Proceeds from the event will fund Palmetto Gold Scholarships for nursing students and the Palmetto Gold Scholarship Endowment.


Tidelands Health is the region’s largest health care provider and MUSC Health affiliate, serving the Carolinas at four hospitals and more than 60 outpatient locations. More than 2,500 employee, physician and volunteer partners work side by side with our communities to transform the health of our region – promoting wellness, preventing illness, encouraging recovery and restoring health.