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Dr. Summer Liston named Oaklawn’s Physician of the Year for 2013

J. Summer Liston, M.D., was honored Thursday evening as Oaklawn Hospital’s Physician of the Year for 2013.

The announcement came Thursday evening during a gathering of Oaklawn staff members at the Franke Center for the Arts. The event included the presentation of service awards to 135 employees.

Liston, a family-practice physician, works out of two offices of the Oaklawn Medical Group – Marshall Internal & Family Medicine at 720 Old U.S. 27 North and the Tekonsha office at 2218 Old U.S. 27 North. The Kalamazoo-area native joined the medical group in 2007.

“It’s a great honor and I had no idea. This was totally unexpected,” a surprised Liston said Thursday night after receiving the award.

Liston told the gathering that the award actually honored her compatriots.

“I can’t do what I do without the help of the personal and professional teammates behind me,” she said.

“My experience in Tekonsha and in Marshall has been so rich,” Liston said during an interview in 2012. “The small-town world allows for really cool relationships.

“A family practice allows me to take care of the whole family in a really unique way,” Liston said at the time. “I take care of my patients’ grandmothers and then take care of their babies.”

Ginger Williams, the hospital’s President and CEO, praised Liston as a physician who exemplifies Oaklawn’s culture and values, and shows true dedication to bettering the communities the hospital serves. Liston possesses the highest integrity in the science and art of medicine and is a valuable role model to colleagues, Williams said.

Liston is the third recipient of Oaklawn’s Physician of the Year Award. José Valle, M.D., received the inaugural award in 2011. The second award-winner was Thomas Neidlinger, M.D., in 2012.

Liston and her husband Mason have two children – Kyle, 2, and Hailey, 5 months. The family lives in Marshall.

Liston earned her bachelor’s degree from Harvard and Radcliffe colleges and her medical degree from the University of Michigan. She completed a family practice residency at Oregon Health and Sciences University in Portland, Ore.

As this year’s honored physician, Liston will direct a $500 donation to a charity of her choice, and her name will be placed on a plaque displayed in the hospital’s main entrance.

The award was established to recognize a physician who has demonstrated their commitment to Oaklawn Hospital’s culture and values, and to the community. To be nominated, a physician must have been a member of Oaklawn’s active medical staff for at least three years, and may be nominated by hospital staff, medical staff or members of the Board of Directors.

Members of Oaklawn’s Medical Executive Committee made the final selection, based on nomination received from other Oaklawn employees and associates.

Comments made by those who nominated Liston for the honor included the following excerpts:

“… is always willing to take time out of the daily schedule, whether it is for another colleague or another patient.”

“… has provided time to the community by helping out at the Fountain Clinic, free seminars … is very involved in the community and is a great role model.”

“… encourages patients to take charge of their own health and provides them with the best solutions for managing their health.”

“… has held several classes/seminars for issues her patients are involved in, and also accepts medical students into the office, acting as a volunteer.”

“… is always willing to lend an eye, double-check and provide education.”

“… always up-to-date on all current changes in the medical field and teaches employees and patients to keep updated also.

Another highlight of the program at the Franke Center was the presentation of service awards to 135 employees for specific levels of service. The awards were given to:

35 years: Paula Guilfoyle, Rosemary Harvey, John Miller and Sally Quilhot

30 years: Joyce Connelly

25 years: Avenell Compton and Terrie Polendo

20 years: Janet Abbott, Angela Heisler, Renee Hodson, Ruth Locke, Mary Metzger, Melessa Moor, Patricia Shedd, Kristin Sims, Kimberly Swafford, Brian Thomas, Sharon Thomas-Boyd and Donna Young

15 years: Verna Barnes, Deborah Campbell, Janice Earle, Donna Fausz, Heidi Fuhrman, Carolle Hicks, Kristine Johnson, Ernest Jones, Matthew Lueck, Jeanna Madej, Shirley Martinez, Lori Meny, Anne Misiak, Connie Monroe, Twyla Newsome, Jan Nielsen, Peggy Roop, Elaine Sims, Brooke Sisco, Dyan Sykora and Jodi Wade

10 years: Rochelle Barnum, Sarah Born, Thomas Brownell, Wendy Calhoun, Wendy Deyoe, Andree Dowding, Karen Face, April Fisher, Susan Ford, Dawn Fox, Jo Ellen Gilbert, Tammy Gore, Briana Hoffman, Irene Johnston, Dawn Lazarus, Brandon Looney, Jeffrey Lillrose, Lisabeth Middleton, Kelly Parkinson, Billie Patterson, Mark Paulus, Gladys Proctor, Durrie Pruitt, Jennifer Putnam, Christine Rasey, Theresa Saumier, Sherri Seifert, Erik Smalek, Kristin Stout, Allison Strand, Lori Sturdevant, Jennifer Tallent, Janice Walton and Steven Wilson

Five years: Andrew Allen, Kymberley Andrews, Robin Anthony, Freda Arlow, Charles Barker, Misti Bell, Kari Brummels, Tammi Buelow, Heather Cooper, Heather Cordell, David Dyer, Tyler Edwards, Leah Eitel, Holly Estlow, Patricia Farmer, Tabitha Foster, Terry Fugate, Lisa Gingerich, Laurie Gladstone, Sarah Goddard, Stephen Grider, Leslie Hagerty, Linda Hampton, Alan Herman, Penney Hickey, Kelle Hinspeter, Amanda Hoyt, Mary Johnson, Roni Marks, Laura Michaels, Nakia McCormick, Tiffany McDonald, Sherri McElvain, Raeann McIntosh, Jacquelyn Nill, Terri Pauken, Jonni Phillips, Pamela Price, Josephine Renaud, Jack Scrimger, Gladys Seedorf, Angela Shaughnessy, Julia Shirey, Jan Sinclair, David Spranger, Sue Stulberg, Amanda Sundberg, Joanna Tarkiewicz, Amanda Thatcher, Patricia Thompson, Deborah Torrey, Marta Venkataraman, Joni Walsh, Heather Watson, Rebecca Weyer, Brittany White, Leah Williamson, Cynthia Willoughby, Brenda Young, Mark Young and Lori Zettell