Past Scholarship Recipients

Join us in celebrating our past “Making a Difference” and Flower Scholarship Recipients

Scholarship recipient, Susan Stauffer, our very first scholarship recipient, with her teenage son who has Type 1 Diabetes. “He is my inspiration.”

2022 Spring “Making a Difference” Scholarship Recipient

Judith Paul is a recipient of our “Making a Difference Scholarship” because she embodies what it means to be a Diabetes Advocate.

Judith contacted us last winter as she was preparing to take the CDCES exam. Through our phone conversations, her passion for Diabetes Care stood out; she is inquisitive, enthusiastic, and has a strong desire to provide the best diabetes care possible.

Through our conversations, I got to know Judith very well. She had moved here several years ago from Haiti with a goal to become an RN, and eventually a Diabetes Educator. For Judith, diabetes is very dear to her heart as she has close family members who live with diabetes. She saw firsthand the devastating effects it can have when someone doesn’t receive adequate care.

As I got to know Judith more, I felt should we be a great candidate for our “Making a Difference” Scholarship. We usually only offer this award once a year in the Spring to candidates who are making significant contributions to improving diabetes care in their community, but Judith’s desire and determination won our hearts. We awarded Judith free access to our CDCES Prep Bundle, to support her dream to become a Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist. Judith fully immersed herself in her studies. Over time, I could hear the changes in her language as she moved towards a more person-centered approach.

After months of dedicated studying, she passed her CDCES Exam this June!

We are so proud of you, Judith, and know that you are going to continue being a fantastic model for your colleagues to provide outstanding care for people living with diabetes!

2022 Spring “Making a Difference” Exemplar Scholarship Recipient

Lori Jackson is a recipient of our “Making a Difference Exemplar Scholarship” because of Lori’s dedication to her community.

Lori Jackson works as an RN at her local Tribal Health Center where she serves a diverse community of various cultural backgrounds. She says that providing diabetes care is her “lifelong passion and calling to help my community and others whom we all share mother earth with, to live their best lives.”

Lori creates care plans that recognize each individual’s unique needs. She has designed a person-centered DSME program where she hosts weekly support groups for people living with diabetes. She also leads a weekly “coffee chat” open to the community where each person can pop in and ask general questions. Her commitment to providing outstanding and compassionate care for her community made her a top-level candidate for this scholarship.

2022 Spring “Making a Difference” Exemplar Scholarship Recipient

Jalak Patel is our second recipient of our “Making a Difference Exemplar Scholarship” for being an advocate for her community.

Jalak Patel works as a RD at a Free Medical Clinic where she provides direct care to those who are low or no income and have access to limited resources. She also volunteers at local churches and temples, elementary schools, and with her Dietetics Association where she provides free cooking classes, meal planning workshops and helped build community gardens.

?Jalak advocates at the state level to expand coverage for those who are insured under Medicaid so they can have wider access to nutritional services. Her advocacy and commitment to expanding access for those who have limited resources make her an obvious top contender for this scholarship.

2022 “Making a Difference” Scholarship Recipients

Congratulations Marit Medefind, Ashley Hackert, Manju Sangraula, and Bertha Lily Gonzalez! 

Their contributions to improving diabetes care are outstanding. We are so impressed by their dedication and the good work they are doing in their communities. 

To honor and recognize their current work and all of their future contributions, they have been recognized with complimentary registration to our DiabetesEd Specialist Basic Virtual Conference. Congratulations!

2021 Virtual Flower Recipient

Chantel Wade is the recipient of our “Flower Scholarship.” Chantel is an ambulatory RN and the lead in the Patient Education Department at her local health center. There she serves a diverse population of individuals from different socioeconomic backgrounds, seeing many people who are on Medicare, Medi-Cal or are uninsured. She uses a hands-on, interactive approach with those she works with; she is committed to meeting people where they are by creating custom care plans that meet their individual needs. Outside of work, she is active in her local Fellowship Church and other organizations where she volunteers her time and expertise to offer pre-diabetes and diabetes education. 

2021 Virtual Exemplar Recipient

Keira McCrary is the recipient of our “Making a Difference Exemplar Scholarship” because of her dedication to her community. Keira works as a Registered Dietician who provides direct care services to Native American tribal communities in her area. In her work, she supports people living with diabetes through all stages of life with programs such as home meal delivery for elder tribal members and the Native Youth Preventing Diabetes Organization. Through Native Youth Preventing Diabetes Organization Keira assists in the education of tribal youth in the areas of diabetes prevention, nutritional education, physical activity, behavioral health, and more. She also creates user-friendly tools for those she works with such as informational “how-to” diabetes-friendly recipe videos and a weekly newsletter.

2021 Virtual Recipient

Logan Mumphrey is our second recipient of our “Making a Difference Scholarship” for many reasons! Logan is currently working towards his MSN/FNP and has worked as the primary nurse and clinical coordinator for transgender health services helping to build the program from the ground up. This program provides gender-affirming care that goes beyond hormone therapy including care navigation, surgery coordination, assistance with identity document changes, peer support, and much more. Logan is passionate about diabetes care and education and hopes that by becoming a CDCES, it will allow him to provide more support for those he works with so they can manage their diabetes with a gender-affirming lens.

2020 Virtual Recipient

Rachel Patton is a trailblazer and fierce advocate for those in need

Rachel works in a non-profit community health center where she serves primarily with people who are un/underinsured, have Medicaid, or Medicare. In her work, she supports people living with diabetes who have barriers in glucose control due to houselessness or depression.

?She has advocated for the accessibility of continuous glucose monitors and other supplies at no or reduced cost for those she works with, even taking the time to call pharmacies to find ways to make supplies more affordable. At community events and health fairs, she has offered her time and expertise to raise awareness about diabetes. She has also created recipe booklets with those in mind who have limited cooking utensils, for example, heart-healthy crockpot recipes that uses items like mugs or spoons to measure ingredients.

2020 Virtual Recipient

Mercy Edziah combines culture, food and cooking classes

Mercy volunteers at a local hospital where she is passionate about increasing her cultural intelligence while working with people living with diabetes from diverse backgrounds. There she leads group classes, peer-to-peer support groups, along with individual sessions.

?Mercy also brings her experience with agriculture and food service to support the hospital’s greenhouse that provides fresh produce for the hospital’s weekly farmer’s market and cooking classes offered in the hospital’s wellness center. In her practice, she individualizes her care plans that match each individual’s access and needs. She is an advocate and pillar of support for people living with diabetes within her community.

2020 Virtual Flower Recipient

Alexa Guzman uses Food Pharmacy Prescriptions to promote health.

Alexa volunteers with her local church and other local health centers to empower her community through education on diabetes management and prevention. In her practice, she works with people who have poor social determinants of health, and little to no access to care.

She is passionate about food accessibility and has adopted the concept of a “Food Pharmacy.” In this practice philosophy, she prescribes food plans that anchor on individual access and that are culturally sensitive. She believes her recommendations should not be confined to only an ”American diet.” Her goal of becoming a CDCES will allow her to expand her impact of providing a high level of care that is realistic and obtainable to those within her community.

2020 Virtual Flower Recipient

Chinethia Johnson is a volunteer extraordinaire.

For Chinethia, diabetes is a disease that holds a personal significance in her heart. Because of her experience with the first-hand impacts of diabetes, she is driven to provide education and support the those she holds dear.

Each month she spends over 40 hours volunteering her time and knowledge either in person, over Zoom or the phone, to people living with diabetes or those who want to learn more about prevention. Outside of the inspiring number of hours she spends each month volunteering, she also juggles being a case manager, a mother, and a grandmother, all while being in school working to obtain her masters in nursing.

2019 Sacramento Recipient

Cheryl Woolf is a recipient of our “Making a Difference Scholarship” for so many reasons! We honor Cheryl for her outstanding contribution as a volunteer and her fierce advocacy efforts for people with diabetes in her community. Cheryl works with Cities Changing Diabetes, to help bring resources to those living with diabetes in the Houston area, including developing an online learning center for healthcare professionals and people with diabetes.

She also volunteers weekly at a 7-acre urban farm to help combat the food desert in a community with high rates of diabetes and hypertension. Cheryl’s commitment to not only make resources available but to also advocate for empathy and compassion towards people with diabetes makes her an excellent recipient!

2019 Sacramento Recipient

Anna Wren is also one of our scholarship recipients for her dedication in providing care to anyone with diabetes. Located in rural Idaho, Anna is the sole instructor that provides multiple free events in three different counties through support, education, healthy cooking, medication options, and fun activities.

She also provides free education to local schools to help children and teens. Anna is passionate about providing resources and keeping costs down for people with diabetes. Thank you for all you do!

Carmel 2019 Recipient

Our 2018 Scholarship recipient, Kelby Kuhn PharmD is from Salt Lake City, Utah.She is currently employed with the United States Air Force. We are happy to celebrate Kelby’s outstanding leadership, starting a JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) chapter in Utah, her advocacy work on Capitol Hill, the volunteerism as Team Captain for JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes, and for being a change agent to improve care as Director of Pharmacy in the United States Airforce. Kelby has been instrumental in raising thousands for dollars for diabetes research. Kelby is passionate about diabetes awareness and fueled by the people and the stories they tell. As the Director at the Diabetic Center of Excellence, she in determined to help empower patients with diabetes and improve long-term lifestyle outcomes. Congratulations Kelby!

San Diego 2017 Recipient

Sommer Kaskowitz is from Yorba Linda, California and works for Central City Community Health Center.She shares her passion for diabetes by working as a family nurse practitioner in the heart of Central Los Angeles.  She recently developed a comprehensive diabetes program for 14 clinics throughout southern California.  She believes diabetes should fit into her patient’s life rather than making their life fit into their diabetes.  Enhancing diabetes prevention and care in her community prompted her to pursue her doctorate in nursing.  As a CDCES, she hopes to better address health disparities in order to provide improved comprehensive diabetes care across diverse populations and culture.  She looks forward to offering care to those who are poor or underserved in her community.  Helping others is truly what drives Sommer to be who she is today. Congratulations Sommer!

Carmel 2017 Recipient

Kayla Fisher is from Jacksonville, Florida and works for UF Health Jacksonville Hospital.  Kayla is part of the Employee Wellness team that provides healthcare, resources and education to more than 5,000 employees that serve the community.    She also volunteers at 2nd Mile Ministries, an inner-city organization, to provide nutrition and diabetes education to youth and at-risk adults.  Kayla also finds time to teach a monthly cooking class to African-American youth about basic nutrition and healthy cooking skills.  By attending the Monterrey course, she will improve the efficiency and quality of the program that they offer to their employees.  The course will also help her prepare for one of her professional goals to earn her CDCES certification. Congratulations Kayla!

San Diego 2016 Recipient

Sara Lasker is from Madison, Wisconsin and works for Meriter UnityPoint Health.  She is an avid volunteer for Diabetes Camps for Children with Diabetes, ADA Camp Needlepoint, ADA Camp Carefree, ADA Camp Sealth in Washington and many more.  Her volunteering brings her great joy because she can be a positive role model for young generations affected with diabetes as well as interact with others who are affected.  Sara has had Type 1 diabetes and is lucky enough not to have any complications of diabetes.  Part of her job responsibility includes being on the ADA Advisory team aimed at keeping up all the diabetes resources to maintain accreditation. She looks forward to attending the Monterey course so that she can solidify the knowledge she needs to pass the CDCES exam as well as benefit her professional goal. Congratulations Sara!

Carmel 2016 Recipient

Candace Williams is a Registered Nurse/ACSM Certified Exercise Physiologist at Bates County Memorial Hospital in Butler, Missouri.  She has created a 15 member DSME advisory committee.  Candace spends some of her free time, researching her county and state statistics on diabetes prevalence.  The hospital administration has given her permission to establish herself as a full-time position for DSME.  Wherever Candace goes whether it be attending church or grocery shopping, she always finds a way to promote diabetes prevention.  Because she approached the hospital administration, she is now able to reap the rewards of her initiative.  Her goal of attending one of Beverly’s seminars will come true in September!  Congratulations Candace!

San Diego 2015 Recipient

Tess Yakle is a Nurse Specialist, and RN at Great River Health Systems in Wapello, Iowa.  Tess found herself falling into the diabetes field almost by chance.  She was at a health fair when she overheard a diabetes nurse providing patient education.  She was fascinated not only by her technique, but also how easily understood a complicated disease could be.  She loves volunteering her time at community events.  She likes to make learning fun and understandable to her audience.  She ends her sessions with a “Let it Go” session.  She asks them to stop letting their diabetes control their lives by letting the negative go, and focus on one positive that has come from the diagnosis.  The key here is “blessing in disguise.”  She also has a personal stake in the disease because her father recently was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Congratulations Tess!

Carmel 2015 Recipient

Heather Archer is a PharmD at Holston Medical Group in Kingsport, Tennessee and not only volunteers at a local Diabetes Association, but also works in a physician’s office.  The physicians depend on Heather to answer questions regarding diabetes care for their patients. Heather is very excited about the opportunity of becoming a Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist®.  Her co-worker has been encouraging her to become a Diabetes Educator so that she can become the resident expert.  Because her family has a history of diabetes, Heather tries to maintain a healthy lifestyle and communicate to her patients how important it is to stay healthy. Heather is adamant about getting to know her patients on a personal level so that they trust her and she can educate her patients to be happy.  Congratulations Heather!

Carmel 2015 Recipient

Betsy Swinny is a RN at Baptist Health Systems in San Antonio, Texas.  She currently works in critical care and has managed the acute complications of diabetes.  She also volunteers her time at a variety of community events sponsored by the Baptist Health System, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the Antonio Chapter of the American Association of Critical Care Nurses.  Two of her most important patients and her inspiration, are her husband and son who both have type 1 diabetes.  Betsy is committed to helping patients with diabetes as well as pre-diabetic patients.  Betsy is committed to improving the health and well-being of patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.  Congratulations Betsy!

San Diego 2014 Recipient

Cristina Perez stands out for her volunteerism, tireless advocacy, and creativity in working with bilingual, homeless and illiterate clients and much more.Cristina works as a health educator in West Los Angeles Clinic. This free clinic serves people who speak no English, are homeless, illiterate and unable to afford medical care.  She teaches classes in English and Spanish and since many participants have limited access to food, she also prepares and provides healthy snacks.  Cristina considers herself the “liaison between diabetes care and her patient population”. She adds, “We tailor diabetes education so that if can fit into anyone’s lifestyle”. Congratulations Cristina!

Oakland 2014 Recipient

Maria Marquez is on the executive board of the Orange County National Association of Hispanic Nurses. She is involved in translating diabetes education teaching materials into Spanish and volunteers “Muevete” an organization which encourages movement and healthy lifestyles. Maria plans to teach classes on volunteer prevention for her community incorporating these healthy living principles.  Maria will take her CDCES® Exam within the next year and looks forward to sharing her knowledge and skills “with anyone that is ready to lend me their ears.”  Congratulations Maria!

Oakland 2014 Recipient

Heather Tilton sees the “diabetes epidemic looming large as a health concern for future generations.”  Heather provides diabetes education in a busy emergency room in an urban safety net hospital and also as part of the Adult and Family Medicine Clinic for Kaiser. Heather observes that one of the biggest barriers to patient education is the strong emotional response of a patient just trying to deal with a new diagnosis.  She believes that through education, “we can improve the lives of those with diabetes and hopefully prevent the growth of the blooming epidemic.”  Congratulations Heather!

Modesto 2014 Recipient

Denna Long has been a staff RN in a very large OB/GYN practice for the past 22 years. Her offices serve an ethnically diverse group of high risk women who have many barriers to over-come.As a case manager for these high risk mothers, Denna collaborates with many other health care professionals to provide optimal care and support.”This unique and challenging group of women, with their high risk pregnancies, have become my passion! I can make a difference in the lives of these mothers and their babies.”Congratulations Deanna!

San Diego 2013 Recipient

Jonathan-David Phung, PharmD, is wide reaching and forward thinking with his actions to improve care in his  community.  From writing grants to creating patient education videos and handouts to volunteering at health fairs and precepting students, Jonathan is tireless in his efforts to improve care for the Tulalip Tribe near Seattle, Washington.  In spite of financial challenges and a workload that requires he works off duty, Jonathan-David continues to dream so he can continue to reach out to his community to provide meaningful resources that improve quality of life for his community.His ultimate professional goal is to “continue to practice diabetes in a clinic because I cherish the relationships I have forged with my patients and providers”.  In addition, he hopes to teach in an academic setting to share his passion and knowledge with others.  Congratulations Jonathan!

Modesto 2013 Recipient

Jeannene Davis’ volunteer activity and her vision really stood out as we read through the scholarship applications for Modesto, 2013.  Jeannene is actively involved in providing diabetes outreach and education in her rural community of Waller, Texas.  She volunteers over 12 hours a month helping people with diabetes.  As Jeannene said in her application, “I provide DM education to at least 20 patients a day and then more on my off days and weekends. I meet them in homes, businesses, and local churches, restaurants, etc.”Jeannene has dreams of buying a mobile unit to reach out to under-served areas and hopes to establish a formal diabetes education program in her community and plans to take the CDCES in May, 2013. Congratulations Jeannene!

San Diego 2012 Recipients

Teresa Jones and Adrienne Starr:  We had many amazing applicants for our Diabetes Ed Course in San Diego.  As such, we decided to award 2 outstanding applicants for their dedication to improving care in under served communities.Both Adrienne and Teresa  are actively involved in developing systems to sustain ongoing education in their respective communities. They are not only dreaming big, but are taking action such as developing diabetes programs with limited resources, providing grocery tours and reaching out to their communities in unique and innovative ways.  Both Adrienne and Teresa plan to take the CDCES in the near future.Congratulations Teresa and Adrienne!

2012 Modesto Recipient

Congratulations to our Making a Difference Scholarship Winner, Susan Schouboe. Susan is new to the field of diabetes education. She works in a rural hospital in Nebraska with limited access to specialists. In her new role providing diabetes education, her goal is to improve inpatient and outpatient care.  She also volunteers in camps in health fairs. She plans to take the information from the course to improve the quality of care that is provided to her clients with diabetes.Congratulations Susan!

San Diego 2011 Recipient

In her official role as Clinical Diabetes Educator in Colorado, Susan Stauffer promotes diabetes prevention by providing monthly prediabetes classes to the community that offer hope and workable solutions. She is also involved in teaching nurses to provide quality care to diabetes patients, especially during hospitalization. In the community, Susan helps manage blood sugars of those with diabetes during sporting events.Susan states that her 17 year old son, who has had type 1 diabetes since he was 9, is her greatest instructor. “He is my inspiration for this job. His heart to work, learn and grow into a healthy man really does inspire me. My son has taught me that blood sugars are not always responsive to 100% effort and that out of target numbers are because “the pancreas is the problem Mom, I have diabetes.” We are proud to announce Susan as our Scholarship recipient.

The use of DES products do not guarantee successful passage of the CDCES exam. CBDCE does not endorse any preparatory or review materials for the CDCES exam, except for those published by CBDCE.”**To satisfy the requirement for renewal of certification by continuing education for the Certification Board for Diabetes Care & Education (CBDCE), continuing education activities must be applicable to diabetes and approved by a provider on the CBDCE List of Recognized Providers ( CBDCE does not approve continuing education. Diabetes Education Services is accredited/approved by the Commission of Dietetic Registration which is on the list of CBDCE Recognized Providers.”