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CPEN is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization; your gift is tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law. No goods or services were or will be exchanged for this special contribution. CPEN uses contributions to sustain its daily operations and develop professional educational programs in cancer patient education.

CPEN Awards

Nominate yourself, a colleague or program for one of the 2015 CPEN Awards!

Click here for a nominations form.

Nominations are due June 29!

Excellence in Cancer Patient Education

Recognizes a CPEN member or group of CPEN members who have significantly contributed to patient education. This award recognizes creative approaches to developing and/or disseminating patient education based on resources available.

2014 Recipient
Tina Papadakos, MA Ed.

Tina Papadakos is an experienced adult educator, certified instructional designer and eLearning specialist with a broad knowledge base in patient and family education and training program design. Tina has expertise in gaining stakeholder engagement, conducting needs assessments, strategic planning and measuring program success.

As lead of the Patient and Family Education program at St. Michael’s Hospital from 2009-2013, Tina was responsible for strategy, operations and process redesign projects to improve access to quality health information for clients. Tina established St. Michael’s first patient and family learning centre, redesigned a process for developing health educational tools, obtained budget approval to launch an innovative patient e-library and oversaw the installation of 140 patient and family information satellite learning centres through the hospital campus.

Tina also designed and delivered training to over 2000 internal staff and supported provincial and international networks (including CPEN) through free access to curricula and materials including topics such as Introduction the Health Literacy, Patient Safety & Health Literacy and Plain Language. Tina also served as education resource development coach to clinical staff and published over 300 new tools and teaching aids for patients and families.

Since April 2013, as Manager for the new eLearning & Curriculum program within the Patient and Survivorship Education portfolio at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Tina is responsible for digitizing many of the hospital’s patient education programs and resources to enable greater access for patients and families. Tina also designs eLearning to build patient education skills capacity for clinical staff and students, is overseeing development of an e-based self-management program and leads curricula-based strategy for special projects such as the Centre’s first patient engagement event where participants developed a ‘toolkit’
to help cancer survivors manage cancer in the context of their everyday lives. Tina and the team won the Champion of Patient and Family Education Award from the Princess Margaret’s Radiation Medicine Program for this innovative approach to resource development and engagement.

Recently published, Tina co-authored a theory-based paper (with her twin sister Janet, also a patient education lead), entitled “From Theory to Pamphlet: The 3Ws and an H Process for the Development of Meaningful Patient Education Resources” in response to a tangible need for a tool to help non-patient education experts develop quality resources. The 3Ws and an H process can be used to develop education resources in any modality, has been adopted as a standard process across several Toronto-based patient education programs and has been used
to develop hundreds of e- and paper-based resources to date. The publication was recognized by the American Association of Cancer Education and won the R. Davilene Carter Presidential Prize for Best Manuscript ( 2nd Place).

Excellence in Cancer Patient Education

2014 Recipient
University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center
Clinical Trails Database Health Literacy Team

Finding cancer clinical trials online is easier than ever through searchable websites and apps provided by cancer centers in the United States and worldwide. Yet, the medical jargon used in trial titles and descriptions presents a barrier to the general public. People can search for and find a cancer trial online but not understand its description or purpose, keeping them from acting upon the information that they find.

To address this barrier, a team from University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center in Cleveland, Ohio created an innovative process for incorporating plain language into the cancer center’s clinical trials website and application functions. The team of two RN’s, a Master’s Cancer Health Education Specialist and a Master’s prepared Health Librarian, developed a comprehensive template of health literate words and phrasing to describe phase I –III trial details, pharmaceuticals and treatments being studied. Meeting weekly as an ongoing working group, the team to date has created plain language short titles and summaries for more than 140 active trials in the cancer center’s searchable database.

Feedback from the cancer center’s Patient and Family Advisory Council has been overwhelmingly positive regarding general understandability of clinical trials on the website and app. Callers to the cancer center’s information line have verbalized basic understanding of clinical trial scope and purpose through use of the website/app. The use of plain language in cancer clinical trials searchable websites and apps is relatively unheard of, with little if any evidenced-based consideration in the current literature. The UH Seidman Cancer Center Clinical Trials Database Health Literacy Team’s methods are a truly pioneering effort to incorporate health literacy considerations into this unique realm of patient education.


Past Winners

2013 Hastings Breast Cancer Support Group
 Be the Match: Super Sam vs. the Marrow Monsters
 Matthew Ballo, MD for the Road to Wellness
2010  Maximizing Your Patient Education Skills (MPES)
2009  Caregivers’ Guide to Bone Marrow/Stem Cell Transplant, Myra Jacobs
2008  The Learning Center at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
2007  Diane Moyer, RN, MS, Ohio State University Medical Center
The Partnership for Health Care Education For Limited English Proficiency Patients 2007  Jean Hartford-Todd, CCLS, The Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke University Medical Center
2003  Oncology Interactive Educational Series, Princess Margaret Hospital, University Health Network
2001  Leah Mraz, BSN, RN, OCN, My Story: A Diary for People With Cancer, The Cancer Institute of  New Jersey   
2000  Marilyn McCubbin, PhD, RN, FAAn, Kelly Cotter, BA, Michael Dystra, BS Outlook: Life Beyond Childhood Cancer, University of Wisconsin Cancer Center
2000  M.D. Anderson Patient Education Office, University of Texas
2000  Carolyn Weaver, RN, MSN, AOCN, Ask the Expert Program, Fox Chase Cancer Center
2000  Tanya Smith, BA & Patient and Public Education Departmental Staff,
How to Help Your Loved One Stop Smoking, Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah
1999  Amy Deshler, MSW, Kelli Fee-Schroeder, RN, and Kat Thieman, MBA
Setting Course to Reduce Your Risk of Cancer, Mayo Clinic Cancer Center
1999  Dr. Joel Goldwein and Dr. Ivor Benjamin, OncoLink, University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center
1999  Mary Sumpmann, Nancy Goldstein and Staff, Patient Learning Center, University of Minnesota Cancer Center

Distinguished Service Award

CPEN’s highest form of recognition given to a CPEN member for her/his outstanding contribution to the practice and profession of patient education. It is given for accomplishments and tangible contributions that have promoted excellence in patient education as an integral part of patient care.

2014 Recipient
Nancy Goldstein, MPH

Nancy Goldstein received a master’s degree in public health from the University of Minnesota. She managed the patient education program for over 37 years at the University of Minnesota Medical Center. She helped establish the first Patient Learning Center in the country. This concept has been replicated around the country as well as internationally. Nancy has published numerous articles and research studies and have been interviewed for many publications including:

  • Goldstein, NL, et al. (1983) Self-care: A framework for the future.
  • Advances in Nursing Theory Development. Maryland: Aspen Publications.
  • Goldstein, NL, et al. (1985). Home parenteral nutrition manual. Oncology Nursing Forum, 12(6).
  • Goldstein, NL. (1991) Patient learning center reduces patient readmissions. Patient Education and Counseling, 17, 177-190.
  • Johnson, LC & Goldstein, NL. (1993) A comparison of two patient teaching methods: One-on-one versus group instruction. Journal of Transplant Coordination, 3(1), 9-14.
  • Goldstein, NL, Snyder, M, Edin, C, et al. (1996) Comparison of two teaching strategies: Adherence to a home monitoring program. Clinical Nursing Research 5(2), 150-166.
  • Goldstein, NL & Hadidi N. (2010) Impact of bariatric pre-operative education on patient knowledge and satisfaction with overall hospital experience. Bariatric Nursing and Surgical Patient Care, 5(2), 137-143.

Below are some of Nancy's additional accomplishments

  • Fellow of the Academy of Health Care Education Professionals.
  • Invited to lecture at the Karolinska Hospital in Stockholm, Sweden.
  • Presented numerous talks locally and nationally on patient/health education.
  • Served as clinical instructor in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota.
  • Managed the Front Door Oncology Program.
  • Awarded 1991 Academic Excellence Award from Minnesota Chapter of the American Society for Healthcare Education and Training.
  • Awarded 1992 Distinguished Achievement Award from American Society for Healthcare Education and Training.
  • Awarded 1995 Distinguished Leader Award from Minnesota Chapter of the American Society for Healthcare Education and Training.
  • Awarded 1999 Cancer Patient Education Network Excellence in Cancer Patient Education Award.
  • Awarded 2000 Fairview-University Medical Center’s Friend of Nursing Award.
  • Awarded 2006 Health Care Education Association’s Excellence in Patient/Community Education Practice Award
  • Served on Board of Directors and as chair/president of numerous local and national

Past Winners

2013   Tamara Harth, MLIS 
2012   Nita Pyle, MSN, RN 
   Lynda Tuñon, MSN, RN, OCN
2010    Pat Agre, RN, EdD
2009    Audrey Jusko Friedman
2008    Jean Just, MSN, RN-BC, The Ohio State University Medical Center
2005    Diane Cole, MPH, University of Virginia Health Sciences Center
2002      Annette Mercurio, MPH, CHES, City of Hope National Medical  Center
2001     Barbara Schroeder, RN, MS, Mayo Clinic Cancer Center
2000    Louise Villejo, MPH, CHES, University of Texas, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
1999     Kathryn Conrad, RN, MSN, MA, AOCN, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute

Rising Star Award (CPEN Members Only)

This award recognizes a CPEN member with 10 years or less of patient education experience, who exemplifies outstanding work in patient education. The award acknowledges the educator’s efforts in creating and/or sustaining cancer patient education programs. The “Rising Star Award” promotes the visibility and value of patient education within health care institutions, communities and/or professional organizations.

2013 Recipient
Chesley Cheatham

Chesley Cheatham began her career as a public health educator with the Harris County Hospital District in Houston. She helped establish one of two cancer
resource centers that assists the medically underserved with resources and services throughout their cancer treatment. During that time, she became an
advocate in the field of health education.

While earning her master’s degree in education at the University of Houston,
she became interested in the area of health literacy. Cheatham currently works
as a senior health education specialist at The University of Texas MD Anderson
Cancer Center, where she develops health education programs and researches
health literacy issues.

She has contributed to professional journals about the importance of health
literacy in cancer settings. Most recently, she was a part of a research group
that focused attention on the standardization of clinical trial consent forms.
She firmly believes that creating a more health literate environment will
not only improve the patient experience, but also improve patient health

Cheatham recently became a board member of CPEN, and she is active with
local and national organizations, such as the Texas Society of Public Health
Education and the National Commission for Health Education Credentialing.

Past Winners

2013  Chesley Cheatham
Lina Mayorga, MPH, CHES
  Becki Brown, MA


Gold Star Award

Recognizes that cancer patient education is an aspect of quality care, shared by the entire community, and not the sole responsibility of cancer patient educators. The Gold Star award celebrates the achievements of individuals, groups or organizations whose efforts in cancer patient education have resulted in extraordinary contributions to patients, families or health care practitioners.

Past Winners

2010  Journey Forward, a collaboration between the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, WellPoint, UCLA and Genentech —
2009  Katherine Crosson
2008  The National Bone Marrow Transplant Link, Southfield Michigan
2007  David Wiljer, PhD,  Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto
2006  Betty R. Ferrell, PhD, RN, FAAN, Marcia M. Grant, RN, DNSc, FAAN            City of Hope National Medical Center
2003  Audrey Jusko Friedman, RTT, MSW
Princess Margaret Hospital, University Health Network
2002  Huntsman Cancer Institute, Patient & Public Education Resource Center
2000   National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, Oncology Nursing Society, Association of Oncology Social Work, and Genetech BioOncology, Inc., The Cancer Survival Toolbox
1999   Barbara Giloth, MPH, CHES, American Public Health Association
1999    Dianne G. Shaw, MA, Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of North Carolina