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ONS Honors 2015 Distinguished Award Winners

ONS Honors 2015 Distinguished Award Winners
Wednesday, April 29, 2015

During opening ceremony of the Oncology Nursing Society's (ONS) 40th Annual Congress in Orlando, FL, renowned nursing leaders received ONS Distinguished Awards for their contributions to the field of oncology nursing. 

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The Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) honored renowned nursing leaders during the opening ceremony of the ONS 40th Annual Congress in Orlando, FL. 
Deborah Mayer, PhD, RN, AOCN®, FAAN, received the ONS Lifetime Achievement Award for her outstanding contributions to the field of oncology nursing and to ONS. Mayer is a professor and director of cancer survivorship at the University of North Carolina (UNC) and UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center in Chapel Hill, NC. The award recognizes Mayer for being a leader within the Society and in her community and for exemplifying the mission and core values of ONS. Mayer has consistently held leadership roles and represented oncology nursing for more than 40 years, from committee chair to mentor to editor to treasurer to president of ONS. She was a member of the National Cancer Institute’s National Cancer Advisory Board, by Presidential appointment, and of the Board of Scientific Advisors. 
Deborah Watkins Bruner, RN, PhD, FAAN, received the Distinguished Researcher Award in recognition of her contributions to research that have enhanced the science and practice of oncology nursing. Bruner is a Robert W. Woodruff professor of nursing, associate director of outcomes research at the Winship Cancer Center and professor of radiation oncology at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Bruner has made outstanding contributions to advance the scientific basis for practice, has had a sustained program of substantive research, has an outstanding record for scholarly activity, has advanced the delivery of quality cancer care by nurses and physician colleagues, has developed a research program that leads the field, and has made substantive and long-lasting contributions to ONS and the cancer community.
Christopher Friese, RN, PhD, AOCN®, FAAN, received the Rose Mary Carroll-Johnson ONS Distinguished Award for Consistent Contributions to Nursing Literature for consistent and significant contributions to the oncology nursing literature. He is recognized for his impact on the profession, specifically using the written word to share research findings, describe content basic to the care of patients with cancer, and support the professional development of colleagues. Friese is an assistant professor at the University of Michigan School of Nursing in Ann Arbor. He is recognized for his high-quality research publications, dissemination of findings for policymakers and practitioners, and his efforts to support the professional development of colleagues. A hallmark of his work is the interdisciplinary nature of his publications, both in terms of authors and collaborators from different disciplines as well as the diversity of scientific journals. 
Dr. Michael Silbermann and Dr. Melissa McDiarmid received the Honorary Member Award which honors an individual who is not otherwise eligible for membership, who has made significant contributions to oncology nursing, demonstrated interest and support in ONS, and exhibited conduct consistent with our mission and core values. Silbermann is the leader of the Middle East Cancer Consortium in Haifa, Israel, and recognizes the value that nurses bring to health care. He has planned and organized courses specifically for nurses around the region and has nurses as the leaders in palliative care around the Middle East. McDiarmid, a professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, is recognized for her significant contributions to the science and public policy of reducing hazardous drug exposure and for advocating for the health and safety of all healthcare workers, especially those who handle hazardous drugs.

Honorary Member Award

Honorary Member Award
2017 Award Recipient
None Awarded

To honor individuals not otherwise eligible for membership who have made significant contributions to the oncology nursing profession, have a history of engaging in actions supportive of ONS, and exhibited conduct consistent with the mission and core values of the Society (innovation, advocacy, and excellence).


An engraved plaque and travel and lodging support to attend the ONS Annual Congress.

Eligibility Criteria 

Candidates must be nominated by a current ONS member. Their distinguished contributions must be specific to the field of oncology and demonstrate service that has significantly advanced the goals of both the oncology nursing profession and ONS as an organization. Honorary Membership is awarded at the discretion of the ONS Board of Directors.

Application Materials 

The following application materials are required in support of the nomination.

  • Narrative statement summarizing the candidate’s qualifications, including examples that reflect their contributions to ONS and the oncology nursing profession
  • Two (2) letters of support from current ONS members
  • Nominee's curriculum vitae


Important Notice About the Nomination Deadline 

ONS uses a vendor-supported online program for all award nomination applications. At exactly 5 pm ET on September 30, the application site will automatically shut down. Any applications that are not completed at this time will be terminated and will not be accepted. This deadline cannot be extended without prior authorization from the ONS Awards advisory panel and the ONS Board of Directors.

Submit Your Nomination 

Online Nominations are Closed 

Our ONS Award Nomination deadline was Saturday, September 30, 2017 at 5:00 PM EST. Our ONS Award Nominations will reopen in April 2018 through September 30, 2018.