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Mary Barkey Clinical Excellence Award

The CLC Mary Barkey Clinical Excellence Award is presented to an individual child life specialist who has demonstrated exemplary child life care and a high level of clinical skill. Each year, the Awards Committee and Board of Directors will consider nominations and select one recipient, with an award presentation at the CLC Annual Conference.

For more information about the award nomination and selection process, visit Mary Barkey Award Nominations


 

Mary Barkey Clinical Excellence Award Recipients 

 

2014

Kathryn A. Davitt, MOT, CCLS, OTR

Kat DavittKathryn “Kat” Davitt, MOT, CCLS, OTR, has worked as a child life specialist at Cook Children’s Medical Center in Fort Worth, Texas for nearly 20 years, and also works as a contract occupational therapist. Prior to her time at Cook Children’s, she worked as a child life assistant and child life specialist at Arkansas Children’s Hospital, and then as a child life specialist at Scott and White Memorial Hospital. At Cook Children’s, she has held positions as Child Life Clinical Coordinator and Community Program Manager, and she also helped to initiate and define the child life role within her current position working for the outpatient neurology, rheumatology, and palliative care clinics. During her time at Cook Children’s, Kat has created two successful patient and sibling camp programs, and spearheaded the sibling support program. She is considered a system-wide resource for training on professional boundaries, and is a widely-respected student supervisor and staff preceptor, promoting professionalism and self-awareness as a facilitator of a clinical supervision group. She coordinated the student program for many years, and created a “Child Life 101” class in response to the many requests for career information received by her department. Kat took her classroom teaching skills all the way to Emmanuel University in Romania, where she taught the region’s first introductory child life course, leading to three Romanian students completing internships in the U.S.

Kat has been an active member of the child life professional community since the days of the Association for the Care of Children’s Health (ACCH). She has presented workshops at both child life and multidisciplinary conferences, and has been involved in child life conference planning and facilitation at the national and local level.  She has published several articles, and co-authored the chapter on chronic illness and rehabilitation in the Handbook of Child Life (2009). Highlights of her involvement with CLC include participating in both parts of CLC’s Vision to Action conference (1996), serving as Secretary of the CLC Executive Board (2006-2008), participating in the first Job Analysis and Certification Exam preparation; chairing the Conference Planning Committee (2006); and serving on a wide variety of CLC committees over the years. 

 

2013

Stephanie Hopkinson, MA, CCLS

Stephanie HopkinsonStephanie Hopkinson, MA, CCLS, is a child life specialist at Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center and a senior adjunct faculty member at Pacific Oaks College. She is also the Lead Executive Consultant and Curriculum Design Specialist for Full Circle Consulting Systems, Inc., a national firm dedicated to the advancement of children, youth and families through training and technical assistance. Prior to her time working as a child life specialist at Kaiser, Stephanie held positions at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, where she was responsible for the co‚Äźdevelopment and implementation of the child life internship program, and Yale New-Haven Children’s Hospital. Stephanie has made significant contributions to the body of child life knowledge as a writer, a presenter, and mentor. She co-authored a chapter in the 2008 publication Child Life Beyond the Hospital, and among other presentations and intensives, she delivered the closing keynote address for CLC’s Annual Conference and 25th Anniversary Celebration in 2007. She has served as an active member on numerous committees and in a variety of leadership capacities, including as a Member-at-Large for the CLC Executive Board from 2006-08. In addition to her service as an active member of many other CLC committees and task forces, Stephanie chaired the Education Committee from 2004-06, and is currently serving as co-chair of the Public Policy Task Force. Along with her professional and volunteer work with CLC, Stephanie commits to more than 200 hours per year of public service in developing countries through Operation Smile.

 

2012

Gail Klayman, MEd, CCLS

Gail KlaymanGail Klayman, MEd, CCLS, is the Adaptive Care Team Coordinator at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC) in Ohio, and her career as a child life clinician has spanned more than 40 years. Among many other accomplishments, Gail was recognized for her pioneering work in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Starshine Hospice, and the Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. In the early 1970s, Gail helped to champion 24-hour family visitation rights at CCHMC, and later in the 1980s, she was a strong proponent of the family-centered care movement . Over the years she has been responsible for the development of numerous policies, protocols and interventions to improve the quality of care for patients and families at CCHMC. In 2009, she initiated the CCHMC Adaptive Care Team, which provides preparation and support to patients with developmental and behavioral challenges. Among her most recent notable accomplishments, Gail partnered with a colleague at CCHMC in the development and evaluation of an assessment tool called the Psychosocial Risk Assessment in Pediatrics (PRAP), which is designed to evaluate a patient’s vulnerability and identify priority patients. The PRAP tool will soon be made available to child life programs throughout North America through a partnership between Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center and the Child Life Council.

 

2011

Elizabeth “Lissy” Zaremba, MA, CCLS
Elizabeth ZarembaLissy Zaremba, MS, CCLS, began her career as a child life specialist at Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital in 1992, and she has been an integral member of the team since that time. She spent the first ten years of her career working the General Medical floors, before moving on to her current position in the Epilepsy and Sleep Monitoring Unit, where she provides in-services to all new EEG and sleep technicians about the psychosocial needs of pediatric patients and families. She worked for many years under the guidance and mentorship of Mary Barkey herself, and continues the important work of updating and promoting the Comfort Measures model; she recently traveled as far as Spain to educate others about the techniques pioneered by Mary and her colleague, Barbara Stephens. Within her own institution, just a few examples of Lissy’s outstanding work include: expanding the Rainbow Babies “Pet Pals” (pet therapy) program; leading a successful pilot child life program in the Pediatric Radiology department that resulted in obtaining funding for a full time child life position; and encouraging the ongoing professional development of her child life and health care colleagues through staff orientation, education, supervision, and mentorship. In the area of research and evidence-based practice, Lissy collaborated with Dr. Carol Rosen on an article published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine (Vol. 2(1), p.3., 2005) and produced a DVD on the topic of making sleep studies child friendly, both of which have helped to promote child life concepts in pediatric sleep centers throughout the country.
 

2010

Bindy Sweett, CCLS
Bindy Sweett has been a respected and integral member of the child life department at BC Children’s Hospital for over 20 years. Currently, Bindy also serves as Sessional Instructor at the School of Child and Youth Care, University of Victoria. Bindy’s professional career began in the field of early childhood as an educator as well as an instructor. After receiving her BA, with distinction, from the School of Child Care at University of Victoria, British Columbia, Bindy began her clinical journey as a child life specialist. Since then, Bindy has been honored in numerous ways by her employer including two Partners in Care Awards and two Excellence in Education awards. Some examples of her outstanding work include the establishment of a child life position in BCCH’s Surgical Day Care Program, the development of an internship program, integrating child life services into the pre-admission clinic, and innovative work with specialty teams such as the pain team. Besides being a dedicated provider of direct clinical work, Bindy is an accomplished speaker and educator. She has presented on a variety of child life topics at the CLC Annual Conference, in Webinars, and in her written work for Child Life Focus, Child Life Beyond the Hospital, and The Early Childhood Educator. Bindy’s long-standing commitment to the Child Life Council has  included serving as a Member-at-Large on the Board of Directors from 2005-2006, and as CLCC Certification Chair from 2001-2003. Her current volunteer positions with CLC include membership on the Internship Task Force, Webinar Task Force, and CLC Program Review and Development Service Committee (2010). Bindy has a particular gift for building relationships and she has generously shared her skills with the larger CLC community by serving as a networking facilitator for CLC conferences and as a group facilitator for the 2009 Academic Summit at Wheelock College. She is also a dedicated volunteer for the Children's Heart Network in British Columbia. Since December 2009, Bindy has served as an Ambassador for the Canadian Child Life Institute.