In today's world, we've all witnessed the immeasurable importance of medical professionals in society. After a daunting year of near apocalyptic horror, with all of Earth falling prey to the treacherous pandemic, Covid-19, it's undeniable that we would not have made it through without the medical professionals in the world. We're not just talking about the doctors leading the charge in pathology, immunology and laboratory research. We're also talking about the well trained nursing staff who had to execute treatment plans for ill patients in hospitals and nursing homes. We're talking about the mental health counselors and therapists who coached people through a year of so much loss, restriction and isolation. We're talking about the administrative staff at hospitals, clinics and testing centers who kept everything afloat on the back end from patient services, insurance billing and scheduling appointments. We're talking about the janitorial staff that kept these places tidy and sanitized to minimize the spread of the virus and other germs.
This article is highlighting a few exceptional medical professionals that are superheroes among us concealed in plain sight. As an act of service to contribute to the community, our parent company, the Calynn Communications & Creative corporation, and its nonprofit initiative, The Fresh Faces Project, will be donating 10 cents per read achieved within the 1st 72 hours of publishing to a medical charity close to our heart, The Erdheim Chester's Disease Global Alliance.
Jenny Pritchett, Chief Clinical Officer
Jenny Pritchett has been a Registered Nurse for 25 years and is the Chief Clinical Officer/Nurse Executive for Crossing Rivers Health Medical Center in Wisconsin. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing, Master’s Degree in Business Administration and Master’s Degree in Public Health. She also holds a National Board Certification in Infection Control and Epidemiology. Jenny has been the lead Incident Commander in the COVID-19 pandemic response. During the pandemic she has learned the power of resilience and the importance of a team. Her team stepped up during this difficult time and made many sacrifices in delivering high level of care for the patients and the entire community. Jenny is honored to be the leader of such an incredible group of healthcare professionals. She is also the former Mrs. American Elegance 2019-2020. She also has a passion for volunteerism and giving back to her community. Her motto in life is “If serving is beneath you, leadership is beyond you.” Jenny resides in rural Wisconsin with her husband and four amazing children.
Dana Neacsu, M.D.
Dana Neacsu, MD is Board Certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine.
She completed her residency in Internal Medicine at Englewood Hospital and Medical Center, affiliated with the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, NY.
Early in her career, Dr. Neacsu was a teaching associate and instructed students from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and Emory University School of Medicine, teaching physicians’ assistants. She then worked at some of the major hospitals in the Atlanta area as a specialist in internal medicine.
Compelled to learn more about integrative medicine, Dr. Neacsu was accepted into the University of Arizona Integrative Medicine Fellowship, one of the oldest and most respected programs of its nature in the country, founded and taught by Dr. Andrew Weil.
Dr. Neacsu is one of the few practitioners in Atlanta who completed the Kalish Institute Advanced Functional Medicine, and she also completed the courses required by Institute of Functional Medicine.
In addition to working with one of the local hospital-based oncology and heart health departments Dr. Neacsu opened her own practice in Atlanta, Medical Creations Integrative Medicine, to better treat patients’ root medical issues instead of just focusing on their symptoms.
She works not only with private clients but also with corporations in terms of employee health and speaking engagements and her latest addition to the practice-organizing medical wellness retreats it is just another way of helping people recover quickly.
Her passion remains however brain health and Peak Performance programs designed for high achievers.
Nallely Garcia, Traveling R.N.
Nallely is a 32-year-old mother of three that lives in Indiana. She has worked in the healthcare industry for the last five years. Nallely, like many others has a dream to someday obtain her Doctorate in Nursing. She believes that in order to lead by example you need to climb the ladder and accumulate experience and various skills. She currently works for eight travel Nursing agencies and has complete over 16 contracts across Indiana. Her experience ranges from long term care to being a school nurse. Her hobbies include volunteering and being an international pageant coordinator. The best part of her career is using her bilingual skills to educate her patients and advocate on their behalf in addition, to bringing awareness to various chronic illnesses.
Photos by Nicolas Blanco
Helen Loubser, Principal Dentist
Helen Loubser was born in France in 1974 and grew up in South Africa. When she was 14 years old she met her husband in high school, got married in 1995 and celebrated their silver wedding anniversary last year. She qualified in 1998 in Cape Town from the University of Stellenbosch. She worked in South Africa for 2 years waiting for her husband to finish his degree as a medical doctor, before relocating to the UK. The plan was to go abroad for some life experience and travelling, but ended up staying. In 2004 she bought her own practice, Orpington Dental Care and has been running it ever since. Helen loves helping patients, getting them out of pain, making them look beautiful and giving them back function. She has a special interest in placing implants, short term orthodontics and composite bonding. In her free time she enjoys competing in pageants with her 11 year old daughter.
Manera Jackson, Nurse Manager
Manera Jackson is a 34 year old nurse that resides in Yorba Linda, CA. Manera absolutely loves nursing! Manera went to nursing school directly after high school and actually became a nurse as a teenager! With over 15 years of nursing of experience, Manera has the gamate of nursing of experience including management, wound care, cardiac, orthopedics, oncology, emergency room, rehab, psych, skilled nursing, prison nursing and so much more! More recently, Manera has become involved in pageantry. Manera joined the National Miss Curvy pageant system in February, as National Ms. Curvy California 2021, and will compete for the National Ms. Curvy title in November 2021. Manera is enjoying this new and exciting experience and is looking forward to what lies ahead. This is only the beginning for Manera, and she hopes that everyone that has a goal in life goes for it and doesn't stop until they reach the sky! She also wants to encourage others to live without regrets and to be unapologetically uniquely you!
Olajide Elegbede, ICU Nurse
Olajide Elegbede, an ICU StepDown nurse at the DMC, Detroit, Michigan. He is famously called “O” or “Ola”, and for most of his social media family, he’s known as the “dancing nurse”.
Olajide pursued his ADN degree because of the passion he’s always had for taking care of people and the sense of fulfillment he feels from bringing smile to people’s faces. He boasts of a Bachelors Degree in Industrial Chemistry, an Associates Degree in Applied Science, and an Associates Degree in Nursing. His leadership skills were made evident when he was elected the Student Nurses’ Association President of his Nursing college, WCCCD, Detroit. His love for humanity led him to start a non-governmental organization back in his home country, Nigeria. This NGO caters for orphans and the physically-challenged children as well.
When he isn’t on the floor, he is either teaching dance classes or making funny video contents. He is a motivator, an exemplary leader and a selfless member of the society who’s committed in giving back through his acts of service.
Lily Ahonen, Occupational Nurse
Lily Ahonen has been a Nurse since 2007. She is a Specialized Foster Parent for medically fragile childrenand has been in this role for the past decade. She also works in corporate wellness, providing services for private clients. She has been in the occupational nursing field for the past decade, providing services such as biometric screenings and influenza vaccinations at the workplace. In 2020, she worked as a screener for COVID-19 at the airport. She will begin providing Rapid Antigen Tests for COVID 19 this month for corporate clients at their workplace.
Lily has one biological daughter and three foster children. She loves to travel and has been to over 40
countries and lived in 5. She also enjoys acting, modelling, volunteering and participating in pageants.
She is a Brand Ambassador for Mama is Looking Fabulous beauty subscription boxes. She volunteers
with Love with Humanity Association, Gems for Gems, Engineers without Borders and APAR Initiative.
Cori Carter, ABA Therapist - R.B.T.
Cori Carter is a mom of 3 beautiful children, a wife to a wonderful Husband, and a student to become a Board Certified Behavioral Analyst. Currently, Cori is employed as a Registered Behavioral Technician, that provides therapy to Adults and Adolescents that are diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum. Cori provides and understands the goals set in motion for each patient, and why implementing these goals can help to understand sustaining life skills. Currently, Cori serves the title National Ms. Curvy Texas 2021 and has made it her mission to inform and educate society on Autism Awareness. Cori teaches Yoga and self-awareness affirmations. Cori has a passion for life and the ability to live a fulfilling life. Cori believes that if we change our mindset, we can understand that we all are looking for the same outcome in life. It just takes some people a different way to get there!
We here at Icons In The Now
thank all medical professionals who serve the world, especially ones who served throughout this past year! You are truly appreciated and icons in society for the work you do and the countless lives you save!