Merikay Joyce, RN, Meritorious Service Award

Illinois ENA gives special recognition to an outstanding member through its Merikay Joyce, RN, Meritorious Service Award. This award recognizes a nurse who exemplifies outstanding practice and dedication to the nursing profession as demonstrated by clinical skill, compassion and commitment. This individual is recognized by their peers as an expert in emergency nursing and consistently exhibits professional behavior and commitment to the profession.

The award was established in 1979 by the Illinois EDNA (Emergency Department Nurses Association) Coordinating Council in memory of Mary Catherine (Merikay) Millaney Joyce who died in February 1979. Merikay was an ER staff nurse at Little Company of Mary Hospital, and active in EDNA at chapter and state levels. She was an admired colleague and good friend. The following is transcribed from the original memo about the award and its criteria sent to the Councillors and Chapter Presidents on Mary 20, 1979, by the Awards Committee Chairman Diane Lovett.

“As you may or may not know, Merikay Joyce, RN, a former Illinois EDNA Councilor, died on Friday, February 16. In addition to serving on the council for three years, Merikay was an active member of the Southwest EDNA Chapter, and served for two years as EDNA Exhibits Chairman for the Illinois Combined Scientific Assembly. Her cheerful and enthusiastic donation of her time and talents to further the cause of emergency nursing can serve as a model to us all.

The 1978-79 Awards Committee has recommended that a permanent Illinois EDNA Award be established in Merikay’s name, to be called the Merikay Joyce, RN, Meritorious Service Award.”

Nomination Criteria

  1. The nominee must be a member of Illinois State Council ENA.
  2. At least one nominator must be a member of Illinois State Council ENA. Additional nominators are allowed, but not required, and are not required to be ENA members.
  3. One narrative statement describing the nominee’s contributions to the furthering of emergency nursing through extraordinary leadership at the ENA state council and significant contribution to emergency nursing. Additional narrative statements are allowed, but are not required. At least one narrative must be written by an Illinois State Council ENA member.
  4. Nominee’s curriculum vitae/resume. (This is highly recommended; however, if you are unable to obtain, please submit as much information about the nominee as possible.)

Narrative Statement/Criteria

Narrative statement(s) should not include the name of the nominee, place of employment, or city/state. Narrative statement(s) should address each criterion listed below:

  1. A description of how the nominee:
    1. has exemplified extraordinary leadership at the ENA state council level
  2. A description of how the nominee has significantly contributed to the field of emergency nursing in at least two of the following:
    1. Continuing education/professional development
    2. Legislation
    3. Development and/or implementation of EMS systems
    4. Increasing recognition and respect by other emergency healthcare professionals

Merikay Joyce Award Recipients

2020 – Karin Buchanan, PhD, MSN, RN, CEN

2019 – Vicki Bacidore, DNP, APRN, ACNP-BC, CEN, TNS

2018 – Thelma Kuska, BSN, RN, CEN, FAEN

2016 – Kathleen Richmond, MS, RN, CIC

2014 – Darcy Egging, RN, MSN, C-ANP, CEN

2013 – Evelyn Lyons, RN, MPH


Award Nomination and Application

Merikay Joyce, RN, Meritorious Service Award
Award Nomination Form