The Wanda Fletcher Nursing Award


Criteria & Eligibility

The Wanda Fletcher Nursing Award was developed in honor of Wanda Fletcher, who worked with extraordinary enthusiasm and commitment in Occupational Health Programs to provide exceptional guidance and care to both employers and their employees in the workforce.

The purpose of the Wanda Fletcher Nursing Award is to recognize a registered nurse practicing in occupational nursing who exemplifies the practice of compassionate, quality nursing care, demonstrates a career commitment to the occupational health nursing profession, and possesses leadership skills that advance their occupational health program to a higher level and inspire

Who Was Wanda Fletcher

For three decades, Wanda Ellithorpe-Fletcher, BSN, COHN-S, was an innovator and leader in the field of occupational health. She broke the glass ceiling for nurses and proved that nurses have the leadership skills and business acumen to fill C-suite positions beyond chief nursing officers in the healthcare industry. Grounded in 10 years of critical care nursing in multiple hospitals, Wanda and David Fletcher started Midwest Occupational Health Associates (MOHA) in 1989 in Decatur, Illinois. Their start-up of their private occupational health practice was assisted by Frank Leone and NAOHP.

Wanda was a role model to all that she worked with from her staff to those she reported to. She had a collaborative leadership style and inspired her team to take risks knowing that she would be there to support them. She was gregarious and always willing to roll up her sleeves and do whatever needed to be done. Wanda epitomized a growth mindset and could teach herself anything, both in the workplace and generally in life. She never stopped learning and adopting innovative ideas and technology to improve patient care.


Selection Criteria: Demonstrates Excellence and Enthusiasm in These Five Areas:

Delivery of patient care, and the initiation of systems that have a broad impact on the patient experience.

Communicating with employers, patients, families, and healthcare colleagues, using examples of specific incidents or systems changes that improve communications.

Commitment to occupational nursing as a career, using examples of participation/leadership in workplace committees, completion of certification programs, or educational advancement.

Examples of inspiring other nurses and healthcare professionals as a role model. Inspire and organize the organization and individuals within it to give their time and talent to the surrounding community.

Demonstrates leadership skills and is adept in business development skills to grow their program.


Demonstrates leadership skills and is adept in business development skills to grow their program.

Demonstrates leadership skills and is adept in business development skills to grow their program.

Submitting Nomination:

Nomination can be submitted by supervisors, peers, or colleagues.

The nomination letter must be signed by a direct supervisor and OHP Medical Director who is involved in patient care with the nominee.

The nomination letter must address each of the five selection criteria.

Each nomination letter should not exceed two pages.


To provide our members with strategic solutions, in helping them build and enhance successful programs to benefit their clients, employees, and business communities.

Helpie FAQ

  • What Is The Prize?

    Each year’s winner will be recognized at the Annual NAOHP Conference and will receive a $1000 cash prize.

  • Who Chooses The Winner?

    The Selection Committee includes:

    Staffed volunteers from the NAOHP, consist of David Fletcher; Katie Kelsch RN (Wanda’s niece); Justine Zilliken,; and 2021 Award Recipient Chaley Shipley, RN

    The NAOHP Board of Directors will make the final selection.

  • Does The Winner Need To Be Present At The Conference?
    While it would be great to have the winner in attendance we understand this may not be possible so it is not a requirement to be eligible to win.