When Lucy Dennis found out she was among this year’s class of Tribute to Women and Industry award recipients, she was overjoyed—though, maybe not for the right reason.
The recognition is well known as the Women’s and Children’s Alliance’s annual TWIN award, which caused some lighthearted confusion.
“When a group of my colleagues came to me with flowers and said, ‘Congratulations, you’re a TWIN honoree,’ the first thought that went through my head was, ‘Finally, (my twin sister) Amy and I are being recognized for how awesome it is to be a twin!’” said Dennis, St. Luke’s Health System vice president of clinical operations.
“Admittedly, it was a fleeting moment because I realized that they were probably not there to celebrate my twin sister and myself.”
Dennis was one of three St. Luke’s employees to earn the TWIN accolade this year. St. Luke’s Wood River emergency department physician Dr. Deborah Robertson and Teresa Stanfill, director of nursing practice, also joined the ever-growing group of accomplished leaders.
The award honors women who have “excelled in their fields and made significant contributions to industry in executive, managerial and professional roles,” according to the WCA.
The TWIN event was held virtually for the first time earlier this month. As a WCA ‘Partner in Freedom,’ St. Luke’s served as the honorary chair, with President and CEO Chris Roth providing a warm kickoff.
Chief Nursing Officer Cy Gearhard and Luana Lamkin, former administrator of St. Luke’s Cancer Institute, volunteered as event co-chairs.
Since 1994, more than 60 women who have worked at St. Luke’s have been recognized with the TWIN distinction. Retired St. Luke’s employee and former WCA board member Vera Fink was part of the inaugural TWIN class. Today, there are more than 1,100 TWINs across Idaho.
“For the last 27 years, WCA has recognized some of the best and brightest female leaders in our community,” Roth said. “Congratulations to all of you.”
Lamkin added, “Once you’re a TWIN, you’re forever a TWIN.”
St. Luke’s and the WCA have a longstanding partnership, united in providing care for many of the community’s most vulnerable kids and adults, said Theresa McLeod, St. Luke’s senior director of community engagement. McLeod and St. Luke’s Chief Administrative Officer Dave Self serve on the WCA’s Board of Directors.
For more than 100 years, the WCA has played a critical role as a safety net for victims of domestic violence and abuse. St. Luke’s has provided multiple Community Health Improvement Fund grants to the WCA to support its services and outreach efforts, as well as sponsor its annual ‘SueB walk-run.’
“Like so many committed and caring organizations in our community, St. Luke’s is honored to have a strong relationship with the Women’s and Children’s Alliance,” Gearhard said.
Daniel Mediate works in the St. Luke’s Community Engagement department.