Back to top
Leora Smith

Leora Smith, RN, retired after 44 years of service at Phelps Memorial Health Center.

Mrs. Smith, Holdrege, said, “I can’t think of a better place to have had my career.  I’ve had great opportunity because so many believed in me.”

Mrs. Smith has been Phelps Memorial’s Chief Nursing Officer for the past nine years, but has served in multiple positions at PMHC over the years. In 1976, Leora began as a staff nurse, but soon became a charge nurse.  This followed by positions as a unit manager, RN supervisor and day manager.  After this she served as the Clinical Analyst and Clinical Project Manager for Meditech which led to her position as Information Systems Leader. Following this, Leora was the Health Information Management and IS Leader before she took on the role of Compliance Officer. Leora then served as the Chief Information Officer before her promotion to Chief Nursing Officer in 2011. 

Dr. Stuart Embury, retired physician, told those in attendance at her retirement party, she was “one of the greats.”  Although he joked about some light-hearted and fun moments over the years, he said “Leora is known for her integrity, compassion, and caring but most of all her expertise and medical knowledge.”   

He noted that especially in the time of the Covid crisis we should lean into gratitude. He said, “Today we gather to show our gratitude to Leora for her dedication and leadership to our hospital.”

Mark Harrel, PMHC CEO, said, “Leora has been a true blessing to Phelps Memorial and their patients.  Passion and commitment to provide the best care was never doubted with Leora at the helm.”

He said she’s “truly one of the best in the business and will be missed.”  

Mrs. Smith has had some big moments over her career at Phelps Memorial including her role in the implementation of a computerized system. She noted that another was being a part of a great team that brought orthopedics and spine care to the hospital.

Loren Schroder, Chief Financial Officer, began working with Mrs. Smith in 1996.  She was in nursing and he was in accounting, they joined forces for the hospital’s new computer system implementation in the mid-90’s.  At that time there was no IT department at the hospital and neither of them had experience in computer systems implementation, but they were determined to learn.  He recalled everything at that time was manual entry with no computer systems and they both took “a lot of heat.”  He noted they had physicians wondering “How could we take our best charge nurse from the floor to play around with these computers that they were never going to use anyway?”   

The Meditech clinical implementation was a monumental challenge but turned out to be a great success and huge leap forward for PMHC.  Mr. Schroder said that Mrs. Smith was amazing in leading that effort and that it was just the beginning of the great things she would go on to accomplish at Phelps Memorial. 

He said, “I honestly can’t think of another person who has had the impact and influence on what PMHC has become, more than Leora has.”

What advice does a 44-year veteran nurse leave to her team? Mrs. Smith said, “Always, always communicate with your patients about their treatment plan and be an educator.”  She added, “Almost always it’s the little things that make the difference to our patients.”

Mr. Schroder shared the lyrics from Mrs. Smith’s favorite song from the LEGO movie at the retirement party,

Everything is awesome, everything is cool when you’re part of a team. 

Everything is awesome, when you’re living out your dream.

Mr. Schroder then thanked her for making Phelps Memorial the awesome place it is today. 

PMHC Sleep Study Program
In The News
Phelps Memorial Health Center proudly announces it has achieved accreditation through Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC) for their Sleep Study program. Accreditation is a process through...
Director of Human Resources, Alicea Hill
In The News
Phelps Memorial Health Center is pleased to announce that Alicea Hill, has been promoted and will serve as Director of Human Resources. Mrs. Hill has been a Human Resources Specialist at Phelps...
Val Lind Recieves Caring Kind Award
In The News
Val Lind, RN, was recently selected as the winner of the Caring Kind Award at Phelps Memorial Health Center. For 40 years, The Caring Kind award has been given to Nebraska’s most caring and...
Tesha Broadfoot, RN, MSN
In The News
Phelps Memorial Health Center is pleased to announce that Tesha Broadfoot, RN, MSN, has accepted the position of Chief Nursing Officer (CNO). Mrs. Broadfoot, Kearney, served as the Director of Quality...
Miki Nichols, RN, and Lori Fuller, RN
Community Events
Nursing leadership roles at Phelps Memorial Health Center have recently changed with the transition of positions of Miki Nichols, RN, and Lori Fuller, RN. Miki Nichols, RN, will serve as the Director...
SPG Block
In The News
Migraines can cause debilitating pain for children and adults. Finding relief may not be far away. Dr. Rahul Razdan, vascular and interventional radiologist at Phelps Memorial Health Center commonly...
June is Men's Health Month
In The News
Often, men can be the biggest obstacle to their own well-being. Some refuse to see a medical provider and often fail to keep up with preventative screenings, but during National Men’s Health Month...
Emergency Room Katie Luthy, PA-C
In The News
At Phelps Memorial Health Center, the safety of our patients and team members is our top priority. If you are dealing with an urgent medical emergency, staying safe doesn’t mean staying away from the...
Renee Johnson - screening at entrance of hospital
Community Events
Phelps Memorial Health Center is now performing imaging services and will begin outpatient surgeries and other procedures that have been delayed the past several weeks because of the COVID-19 pandemic...
Stacey VanBoening, APRN
In The News
The current coronavirus outbreak is a concerning time for many people, including cancer patients, their families and their caregivers. Phelps Memorial Health Center is keeping patient safety a high...
52nd anniversary celebration
In The News
Phelps Memorial Health Center is celebrating their 52nd anniversary by giving back to the community. Leora Smith, Chief Nursing Officer, said “Today we celebrate fifty-two years of service…. but we...
Patients Should Call First
In The News
Persons experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should call their medical clinic and discuss those symptoms with a local health care provider prior to their visit. The provider can then further advise if...
Face Masks help decrease spread of COVID
In The News
Individuals may not have symptoms of COVID-19, but may spread the virus. Universal masking protects others, not the wearer. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released new...
Holdrege Doctors
In The News
Family Medical Specialties and Phelps Medical Group of Holdrege, NE alongside Phelps Memorial Health Center and ruralMED Management Resources have been working together to implement changes to best...
Virtual Visits at Phelps Medical Group
In The News
As COVID-19 has affected how many of us go about our daily lives, it has also changed the typical primary care visit. Phelps Medical Group has transformed how providers and patients can meet with...
Dr. Zach Egger
Community Events, In The News
In an effort to encourage social distancing, Dr. Zach Egger is available for virtual appointments. Through video, Dr. Egger will be able to provide medical guidance for concerns not requiring a...
In The News
To ensure we limit the exposure of COVID-19 for our patients and staff, Phelps Memorial Health Center is taking the following precautions: No visitors in the facility with the following exceptions:...
Diabetes team
In The News
Patients who completed the Phelps Memorial Health Center Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support program significantly decreased their A1C by completing one-on-one education sessions. An A1C is...
Top 100 Critical Access Hospital
In The News
Phelps Memorial Health Center, Holdrege, was recently named one of the Top 100 Critical Access Hospitals in the United States by The Chartis Center for Rural Health. Regarded as one of the industry’s...
In The News
Phelps Memorial Health Center has funds available to support non-profit organizations. Community Benefit grants are given by the PMHC Foundation to improve the health and well being of people in the...
PMHC
In The News
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released its latest hospital ratings and Phelps Memorial Health Center, Holdrege, Nebraska, received a five-star rating. The five-star rating is...
LVAD Education
Education
Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD) was the topic of education for several area medical providers, area EMT’s, and the emergency services and cardiac rehab teams at Phelps Memorial Health Center...
Jenny and Karen
In The News
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) announced successful recertification of the Phelps Memorial Health Center Diabetes program through the Education Recognition Program. Phelps Memorial has been a...
In The News
Dependable. Efficient. Dedicated. These words are the driving force of the Phelps Medical Group team. They are committed to helping patients improve their health and maintain quality standards as a...
Fiscal Services Team
In The News
The technical definition of fiscal, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is transactions relate to financial matters (Merriam-Website, 2019). The Phelps Memorial Fiscal Services Team is so...