Nightingale Gala

2016 Nightingale Highlights

The Center for Nursing’s first Nightingale Gala was held in 2015 to commemorate their 40th Anniversary. The gala is held annually to honor the nursing profession in New York State and beyond. At the gala, two awards are given, the Nightingale Award and the Driscoll Award. The Nightingale Award is given to an organization or individual whose actions mirror those of Florence Nightingale: leader, mentor, educator, researcher, organizer, developer, bold in the face of adversity, and passionate about nursing and patient care. The Driscoll Award is given annually to an individual who stands out in their dedication, determination and support of the Center for Nursing in their efforts to increase public knowledge and understanding of nursing, the nursing profession and the arts and sciences on which human health depends.

On Saturday, October 15, 2016, nurses, educators, doctors, family and friends gathered at The Desmond in Albany to celebrate the 2016 Nightingale Gala. The evening began with a cocktail hour, where guests were able to network and catch up with friends and colleagues. After the cocktail hour, guests were then welcomed by the evening’s emcee, Matthew Hickling (Matt). Matt stepped into the spotlight in 2015, when his then four-year-old patient at the Melodies Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders, Abbey, asked Matt to marry her. Guests at the Gala were blessed with the opportunity to meet Abbey and she stole all of our hearts.

As dinner was finishing, the awards were presented. The Driscoll Award was presented to Mary J. Finnin, whose service, contributions and advocacy have made a significant impact on nursing and her dedication epitomizes the values for which Veronica M. Driscoll stood. The Nightingale Award was presented to Bonnie and Mark Barnes, founders of the DAISY Foundation. For over 17 years, they have been recognizing extraordinary nurses locally, nationally and internationally. The speeches by the awardees left the guests searching for their tissues. Once the guests dried their tears, they were then treated to live music by Bluz House Rockers, which emptied seats and filled the dance floor!