The Bottom Line
Sunday, December 8, 2013

Health care coalition recognizes Mariners

Mariners Hospital has been named one of the nation's top hospitals by the Leapfrog Group, a coalition founded to seek improvements in health care safety, quality and affordability. This is the second time Leapfrog Group has recognized Mariners as a top rural hospital.

Ninety out of 1,300 hospitals were honored at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.

"We are honored to be included in the group of top hospitals recognized by the Leapfrog organization," said Rick Freeburg, Mariners Hospital CEO. "Leapfrog is a leading organization and being recognized by them as one of the best in the country showcases the commitment of the Mariners team to providing the highest quality of patient care and signals to everyone that Mariners Hospital provides safe, high-quality care right here in the Keys."

Violette named top auxiliary volunteer

Kathleen Violette of Tavernier recently was named the Mariners Hospital Auxiliary Volunteer of the Year.

Cheryl Cottrell, chief nursing officer, and George Geisler, auxiliary president, presented the award to Violette at the Auxiliary's December general membership meeting.

Violette has volunteered more than 2,500 hours since joining the auxiliary in 2009. As first vice president, she is responsible for training all auxiliary members and coordinating their volunteer activities in the hospital.

To be considered for the annual award, nominees must have been a member of the auxiliary for at least four years and must have volunteered a minimum 1,000 hours. More than 190 volunteers are members of the Mariners Hospital Auxiliary.

Smith named branch manager

Homestead Funding Corp., which opened a branch in Marathon, recently appointed Natalie Smith to the position of branch manager and licensed loan originator at the new location.

Smith brings more than 20 years of mortgage experience, states a press release from Homestead Funding Corp.

The Albany-based company is a multi-state, licensed mortgage banker with branches in New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Florida and Virginia.

Sharp marks 25 years at First State Bank

First State Bank of the Florida Keys recently honored President, CEO and Director Karen Sharp for 25 years of service to the bank.

Sharp has been working at First State Bank of the Florida Keys since 1988, serving as chief financial officer before assuming her current role as president in 2002.

An active member in the Florida Keys community, Sharp is an officer of the Florida Keys chapter of the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants, a board member of the Florida Bankers Association, treasurer of the Community Foundation of the Florida Keys, and a past-president/honorary board member of the American Cancer Society's Florida Keys Unit.

"Karen's vision, dedication, leadership and commitment to the bank and Keys community have been important factors in our ongoing success and an example to us all," said Jack Spottswood, chairman of the board.