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Golden Valley Memorial Healthcare employees receive continuing education awards from The Research Foundation

Golden Valley Memorial Healthcare employees

KANSAS CITY, Mo., (July 15, 2021) – The Research Foundation’s annual continuing education awards given to health care workers at regional hospitals have been presented to two Golden Valley Memorial Healthcare employees. Cara Gruenwald is the 2021 recipient of the Hal M. Quinn Excellence in Nursing Award and Jodi Davidson is the 2021 recipient of the Kathy DeGrande Award for Excellence.

Gruenwald is a registered nurse at Golden Valley Memorial Healthcare in Clinton, Missouri. She commutes from Stockton, Missouri each day to work in the operating rooms as a circulator. Starting as a surgical technician in the surgery department, she has a wealth of experience in health care including nine years as a nurse. Gruenwald’s coworkers describe her as confident, calm, and honest – the type of nurse you wish for when a family member requires surgery.

The Hal M. Quinn Excellence in Nursing Award was created in honor of former board member and chairman of The Research Foundation, Hal Quinn. Quinn passed away May 2013. The award provides $1,500 for continuing education to a nurse that excels in patient care.

Davidson has worked in hospital laboratories since 2000 where she started as an aide. In 2009, she received her associate degree as a medical laboratory technician. Now the clinic laboratory supervisor at Golden Valley Memorial Healthcare, she is working toward her bachelor’s degree to become a medical technologist and clinical laboratory scientist. She makes a special effort to know all the employees in the lab and frequently entertains them with stories about her personal life.

The Kathy DeGrande Award for Excellence was created to honor Kathy DeGrande, former vice president and chief financial officer at Research Medical Center and Research Belton Hospital, now Belton Regional Medical Center. DeGrande passed away March 2000. The award provides $1,000 for continuing education to a full-time or part-time health care professional that is committed to excellence, abiding interest in the welfare of their co-workers, has a zest for life, and a sense of humor.

Both awards are given annually to area health care professionals who work at hospitals in the region including Belton Regional Medical Center, Cass Regional Medical Center, Centerpoint Medical Center, Children’s Mercy Hospital, Liberty Hospital, Olathe Medical Center, Research Medical Center, Truman Medical Center, and Western Missouri Medical Center. Funds can be used to attend local, regional, or national symposiums. They can also be applied to tuition, textbooks, journals, and other professional materials.

The Research Foundation supports professional development in health care through several other continuing education opportunities. Visit to learn more.