Humboldt General Welcomes New Chief Nursing Officer

Leeann Cushway, RN, says she’s excited to trade in her big-city life for the peace and calm that a small town and community hospital can offer.

The incoming Chief Nursing Officer at Humboldt General Hospital has spent the last five years working at large trauma facilities in Las Vegas, and she is eager to get back to her rural roots where her passion in nursing began.

Cushway launched her nursing career in a critical access hospital in Wickenburg, Arizona. From there, she accepted a leadership position in Soldotna, Alaska, for the following 10 years. She and her husband maintain a home in Soldotna, where her husband runs a bed and breakfast and guide service on the Kenai River; the two consider the Land of the Midnight Sun their second home.

Most recently, Cushway served as the Assistant Chief Nursing Officer at both Valley Hospital Medical Center and Sunrise Hospital in Las Vegas. Going from hospitals with 400-plus high-acuity patients a day to a 25-bed acute care hospital will certainly present some changes in pace, but Cushway says her core focus on patient-centered care will remain the same.

The reality is, she has missed her daily interactions with patients and staff more than she can say.

“I was raised in an environment in which all of my family was in healthcare,” said Cushway. “My parents ran an assisted living while I was growing up, so every patient was our loved one and treated as family.”

“I have vowed to assure that every patient is treated with compassion, dignity and respect in my career,” continued Cushway. “I am excited to join the HGH team in maintaining that focus on our patients and helping them achieve the best possible quality outcomes, and assure they are treated as we would our own loved one.”

Cushway will assume the position that Darlene Bryan has filled for 20 years. Darlene will retire in April after 36 years at Humboldt General Hospital; her last day on the job will be Friday, February 28.

“Darlene has done an amazing job assuring she has the right people on staff to provide compassionate and exceptional care,” said Cushway. “That was one of the reasons I chose to come here: this is a wonderful hospital with a great nursing operation. I see great potential for growth and providing additional services inhouse to keep our patients in this community for the care they need.”

Cushway sports a long list of career advancements—most centered in critical care and emergency medicine, which only makes sense since her initial foray into healthcare was as a Washington State paramedic.

She received bachelors of science and masters in nursing administration degrees from Chamberlain University. She also is a Fellow of the American Organization of Nurse Executives.

“I am excited to be here and to have this opportunity,” said Cushway. “This is a great community and a great hospital and I am looking forward to the good things we can accomplish together.”