Inside Gillette Blog


Meet Us Monday- Eric Flam, Seating Practitioner

Posted On: 09/29/2014

1. What is your position and role at Gillette? I am a seating practitioner at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare. I am responsible for evaluating, fabricating and providing custom complex seating systems. 

2. Do you have a favorite Gillette story or memory? My favorite memories are from when my little brother Evan was an inpatient here at Gillette.  I remember all the nurses and therapists playing with my brother and me during his stay here. This is the reason why I work at Gillette, because I think of it as my second home.

3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? I love to coach my children’s sports teams, go skiing with my daughter and hopefully the rest of my family this year.  I also play hockey on Wednesday nights. 

4. Do you have any children or pets? I have an 8-year old daughter, 4-year old son, and a 7-month-old lab mix. 

5. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? I love to visit New York to visit my family and to eat the food.  But mostly the for the food.

6. What is one fun fact about you? I attended acting camp in  New York but I never made it big so I only do stand up for families here at Gillette.


Meet Us Monday- Anne Keenan, Supervisor-Child Life, Child and Family Services

Posted On: 09/17/2014

Test Caption1. What is your position and role at Gillette? Half of my time involves providing Child Life support to patients at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare.  The other half of my time is spent as a supervisor of my Child Life colleagues.

2. Do you have a favorite Gillette story or memory? On a daily basis, observing patients and their caregivers persevere amidst challenges is remarkable.  Our patients and families have taught me to support children for who they are and to be resilient under stress at the same time.  Other favorite memories include putting on events that bring joy to patients’ days—Cops-N-Kids, Firefighters’ Carnival, Trick-or-treating, Child Life Week, and other special events of which we are a part.

3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? I am an avid hockey fan and have been playing on a women’s team for the past 14 years.  In the winter, if I’m not playing myself, I’m usually glued to Gopher and Wild games on TV.  Taking early morning walks, spending time with my family, and housecleaning (strange, I know) also are enjoyable in my spare time.

4. Do you have any children or pets? I have an 18-month old son and another child due mid-September.  We have a 10-year old black lab named Maggie.

5. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? I would love to take road trips across the U.S. with my family.  There are many relatives, friends, and historic sites that I would love to visit.  Of course, visiting the ocean in the winter is also a dream vacation for me. 

6. What is one fun fact about you? I was a member of the inaugural women’s soccer team at the University of Minnesota.  Go Gophers!


Meet Us Monday- Beth Engelking, Music Therapist

Posted On: 09/09/2014

1. What is your position and role at Gillette? I am a music therapist. I see inpatients at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare in St. Paul. I just started seeing adult patients at the Lifetime clinic.

2. Do you have a favorite Gillette story or memory? It’s hard to pick a particular story from all the great things that happen every day! It’s so rewarding to see patients light up when we start creating music, and it’s even better when the whole family makes music together. One patient wrote a song that she’d like to sing for the American Idol judges and asked me to accompany her at the audition someday. On the more serious side, I sang patient and family preferred songs at bedside for a young patient who was in the end stages of life. The patient visibly relaxed, and the experience was very meaningful to the family. It’s such an honor to be part of these patients’ lives! 

3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? I’m really involved in the local Irish community – Irish Fair, Irish Music and Dance Association, Friends of St. Patrick. I also love practicing yoga, hiking, traveling, reading, playing my own music for fun, and playing board games.

4. Do you have any children or pets? Almost! Our first child is due in October.

5. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? I’ve had the good fortune to travel at home and abroad quite a bit, and I’ve lived in Paris, France and Cashel, Ireland. Someday I’d love to visit the Pyramids of Egypt, Machu Picchu, and Niagara Falls.

6. What is one fun fact about you? I love to dance! I started ballet classes when I was two and went on to train professionally until I was 18. I have danced with a few professional ballet companies from around the country. After retiring my pointe shoes, I learned swing dancing and Irish dancing. I have even taken a few classes on Japanese and Korean pop dance.


Meet Us Monday- Nancy Thomas, Volunteer Coordinator

Posted On: 09/05/2014

1.) What is your position and role at Gillette? I am a Volunteer Coordinator, which allows me to interview, recruit, coordinate and supervise the volunteers at Gillette. I enjoy meeting new people and connecting with the staff at Gillette to schedule volunteers for positions!

2.) Do you have a favorite story or memory? I meet incredible people in the community who want to donate their time and energy to Gillette.  One example is a 7-year-old patient who wanted to give back to Gillette. He threw a birthday party in his hometown and instead of asking for gifts for himself, he asked everybody to bring an item from home (glue sticks, craft supplies, popsicle sticks, crayons, etc.). He used the items to create “Imagination Kits” for the children at Gillette, to keep them entertained while in the hospital. He brought in 299 imagination kits! Great things come in small packages!

3.) What are some of your hobbies outside of work? I am an avid Minnesota sports fan. Show me a Groupon for a new restaurant and I’m there! I also love grilling out and spending time with my family.

4.) Do you have any children or pets? My husband, Jeff and I have two sons, one daughter and one granddaughter. Cooper, our Cairn terrier, is 12 years old and is quite the crowd pleaser!

5.) If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? I hope to visit Albuquerque, New Mexico sometime in October for the International Balloon Fiesta.

6.) What is one fun fact about you? I have owned 14 different types of animals, everything from an iguana, ducks and homing pigeons to a guinea pig named Gumdrop!


Meet Us Monday- Chuck Cunnien, Materials Management Supervisor

Posted On: 08/28/2014

1.) What is your position and role at Gillette? I am the materials management storeroom supervisor located on the ground floor of the St. Paul—Phalen Clinic. I supervise and assist the materials storeroom staff with supplying the nursing units and outpatient clinic with a multitude of different products. We also supply products to all other departments in St. Paul.

2.) Do you have a favorite Gillette story or memory? My favorite part of my job is when I’m walking down the hallways and one of our patients smiles at me. Then I know they’re having a good day.

3.) What are some of your hobbies outside of work? After more than 30 years of coaching girls/women’s sports including soccer, basketball and fastpitch softball, I am now back to playing golf in a men’s league at Logger’s Trail in Stillwater and enjoying it.

4.) Do you have any children or pets? I have two grown daughters. Both of which are married. Kristin, my oldest, has three children: Gavin, 5, Declan, 3, and Asa is only three weeks old. They all call me Pop! Katie, my youngest, has a black lab named Lucky. My wife Lynn and I have a golden retriever named Lola.

5.) If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? To the North Shore—I love to hike those trails! There isn’t a better place for me to be.

6.) What is one fun fact about you? I was a DJ at a roller skating rink for 31 years.


Meet Us Monday- Natalie Jeanetta, Patient Care Technician

Posted On: 08/21/2014

1. What is your position and role at Gillette? I am a Patient Care Technician (PCT) in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit here at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare.

2. Do you have a favorite Gillette story or memory? Over the past 10 years at Gillette, I have made many memories. It is truly hard to think of just one. I have many fond memories of patients coming back and visiting.  I love seeing them conquer some of the hardest moments in their lives, and yet they always come back with a big smile on their face, and lots of stories to tell. It means a lot to me that they take the time out of their busy day of therapy and clinic appointments to stop by and say hi. To me, it means they had a great experience and can’t wait to tell us how well they are doing. I feel truly blessed to work at Gillette with such a passionate group of doctors and nurses.

3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? I just recently started updating my house so I am officially a DIY’er, kayaking (which I am new at), and yoga.

4. Do you have any children or pets? I have a two kids and a dog. My son, Jacob, is 12 ½ going on 20. The newest addition is my daughter, Evelyn, at just 17 weeks. I also have a 5-year-old Yorky Maltese named Abby.

5. What is one fun fact about you? I love to sing! I tried out for American Idol six or seven years ago. It was not what I expected it to be but it was quite the experience!


Meet Us Monday- Nancy Hefko, Development Associate/Children’s Miracle Network

Posted On: 08/15/2014

1. What is your position and role at Gillette? I am a Development Associate in the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals department at Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare. I manage fundraising campaigns for national, regional and local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital sponsors as well as other supporters (individuals and businesses). I provide support to partners like Dairy Queen, Costco, RE/MAX, Wal-Mart and Sam's Club to enhance their fundraising opportunities. The most recent example would be the work I did with Dairy Queen and their Miracle Treat Day campaign for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals to build relationships with franchisees for participation and connecting them with Gillette patient families.

2. Do you have a favorite Gillette story or memory?  There are so many great stories. I have the privilege to work with the Minnesota Royal Ambassadors organization and Minnesota Twins for Sparkle Night. A portion of the ticket sales for the Sparkle Night Twins game is donated to Gillette. The Royal Ambassador organization invites those Gillette patient families attending the game to lead a pre-game royal parade on the field. T.C. joins the procession adding to the excitement for all the kids (and parents)! One patient mom sent me a message following the event about her daughter. Her daughter had expressed to her mother that attending this event as a Gillette ambassador gave her a way to celebrate who she is and helped to build her self-esteem. The pictures with smiles said it all. I love my job.

3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? I enjoy cooking, baking, flower gardening and traveling.

4. Do you have any children or pets? We have five children, two grandchildren and a dog.

5. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? I would love to go to Italy or New Zealand. I would not be disappointed with either one.

6. What is one fun fact about you? I love to bake, especially cakes. My kids get to pick their own birthday cake, which usually involves me Googling recipes. It has now become an unspoken competition between them to pick the best. I love it!


Meet Us Monday- Mary Maginas, Neurosurgery Nurse Practitioner

Posted On: 08/08/2014

  1. What is your position and role at Gillette?   I am a pediatric neurosurgery nurse practitioner.  I work primarily at the St. Paul campus but also see patients in Duluth and Burnsville.  I help manage pediatric and adult neurosurgery patients in both the inpatient and outpatient settings. 
  2. Do you have a favorite story or memory?  I have had the opportunity meet so many remarkable patients and families—all of them with their own special stories. I have followed many patients in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit after a severe injury.  I love being able to see them throughout their recovery, and continue to follow them years later, to see what amazing progress they have made. Our patients never cease to inspire me.
  3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work?  You can usually find me playing outside with my sons or walking to the park or the lake near our home.  I love to bake and cook and find new recipes for my family to try. My husband and I also enjoy going out to try some of the many unique restaurants we have near us in Minneapolis (when we have time!) 
  4. Do you have any children or pets?  I have two sons ages one and three.
  5. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? Greece! I am Greek and love visiting my family and the country of my heritage.  The country is beautiful, the food is amazing and the people are the friendliest people you will ever meet.
  6. What is one fun fact about you?  I was born and raised in Southern California.  I've grown up in Orange County, have had the opportunity to live in San Diego and went to graduate school in New York City.  I love  Minneapolis because I feel like it offers the best of all the places I have lived. 

Meet Us Monday- Nicole Hickman, Registered Nurse

Posted On: 07/30/2014

1. What is your position and role at Gillette? I am the day charge nurse on the adult unit. I am here usually Monday through Friday and work as a resource and advocate for families, patients, and the staff on the floor.  I do a lot of troubleshooting each day to find solutions to questions/issues that arise.  I love this position since I am able to be bedside with the patients at times, but also help a lot with care coordination by working with all the different disciplines at Gillette and with the patients and families themselves.

2. Do you have a favorite Gillette story or memory? Two instances that come to mind are actually patients that were on our unit during the last moments of life.  These patients were put on hospice care on our unit and although it is a very difficult time for family and friends, it can be very humbling and such a privilege to work with patients during this time in their journey.  After the passing of one of these patients, I was able to be present with the family and chaplain as we prayed over a patient after his death.  This moment will always be special to me—to be able to shed tears, mourn, and celebrate a patient’s wonderful life, their transition to the next stage in their journey, and the impact that they made on all the people that surrounded them. 

3. What are some of your hobbies outside of work? My kids keep me pretty busy at home! This summer my husband and I created a bucket list for activities for the summer: camping, a Twins game, the Minnesota Zoo, the Children’s Museum, the beach, mini-put golfing, the Raspberry Festival parade in Hopkins. 

4. Do you have any children or pets? I have two boys – Henry (almost 3-years-old) and Charlie (9 months).  Henry is a non-stop talker and so funny! He makes my husband and I laugh on a daily basis.  Charlie just started crawling and is enamored by our chocolate lab, Meiko. 

5. What is one fun fact about you? I lived in five different states as a kid.  My dad was in the navy, so I grew up as a military brat.  We lived in California, Tennessee, Florida, and North Carolina before we moved to Minnesota when my dad retired.  I think I will always want to be close to family since we lived far away from our extended family for so many years!


Meet Us Monday- Betsy Taylor, Fundraising Communications Specialist

Posted On: 07/28/2014

 

  1. What is your position and role at Gillette? What is your average day like? My title is fundraising communications specialist, and I write things like brochures and event programs to support Gillette’s fundraising efforts. An average day here includes a good bit of writing, maybe an interview with a family, a few consultations with our talented designers, and brainstorming meetings to help kick off new fundraising efforts. Most recently, I’ve worked on the CurePity Heroes campaign, which asks the public to share stories of kids, adults and groups who personify CurePity. For every submission we receive, CenturyLink makes a donation to Gillette
  2. 2. Do you have a favorite Gillette memory or story? My favorite Gillette memory was interviewing the parents of Jim Grimm, who was a patient here for more than 30 years before he passed away in 2009 at 42. His family has been working closely with Gillette to promote our Integrative Care Fund.  His parents shared memories of their son and insights about how music and massage therapies can complement traditional treatments. When you think of music therapy, you might think of something light like the sound of a gentle waterfall, but for Jim, it was heavy metal music that soothed him. I walked away wanting to do anything I could to help this family meet their fundraising goals.
  3. Do you have any children or pets? Yes! Our son, Charlie, is 2 and hilarious. We have a pug named Mister Tuppence, who’s also a great comedian.
  4. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? I’d go to either Florence, Italy, because I’ve always wanted to visit, or Memphis, Tennessee, because I’m homesick for the friends, family and food that I love so much there.
  5. What is one fun fact about you? I got married at Graceland Wedding Chapel in Las Vegas in a $16 dress from the Salvation Army. After the ceremony, my husband and I took the city bus back to our hotel and snuck into a luau. It was a budget wedding befitting two poor students, and it was perfect.

 1 2 3 >  Last ›