“That this honor comes from my peers, there’s no greater award than that.”
Marian O’Rourke, RN, CTCC
The Annual Heckenkemper Leader in Transplant Administration / Quality Award (also known as the Heckenkemper Award) is given each year at the UNOS Transplant Management Forum (TMF) to an individual who has made significant contributions to organ donation and transplantation. This year the community recognizes Marian O’Rourke, RN, CCTC and Director, Quality, Compliance and Outcomes Management at Jackson Health System, for her decades of pioneering efforts in organ transplantation.
“She is well thought of by her colleagues, known for having a smile on her face and a calm demeanor,” says award presenter Alexander Aussi, CEO of Guidry & East, LLC. “She is accomplished in her field and regarded as a pioneer.” Marian’s work as an RN began in Ireland in 1986 before she settled in the U.S., joining the team at Mount Saini Health System in N.Y. in 1992. She has since contributed to many programs across the U.S. Notably, Marian was instrumental in executing a plan of action to continue providing lifesaving care for waitlisted and transplanted patients in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina.
“That this honor comes from my peers, there’s no greater award than that,” says Marian. In her acceptance speech, she shared her journey through different roles in the community and ended with a tribute to organ donors. “None of this is possible without living donors, organ donors and their families,” says Marian. “I am extraordinarily grateful that they, along with transplant patients, have allowed me the privilege of being part of their journey.”
The Heckenkemper Award was established in memory of Deedle Heckenkemper and honors the contributions he made in the foundation and development of the OPTN Transplant Administrators Committee and the donation and transplantation community. The award is sponsored annually by Guidry & East, LLC. Nominations are provided by the community and winners are selected by the UNOS TMF Planning Committee based on specific criteria. You can see a list of previous winners here.
UNOS and the TMF Planning committee would like to thank CareDx, Inc. and our many sponsors and exhibitors for their support of the 2023 UNOS TMF. Our meeting was made possible by many generous sponsors and exhibitors, most of which return annually to TMF to support UNOS in fostering collaboration and transformative learning in transplant management. Special recognition is extended to CareDx, Inc., our Diamond sponsor and a true leader in supporting continued learning in the transplant community.
TMF is celebrating its 31st year convening professionals in the donation and transplant community. TMF’s educational sessions and networking opportunities create channels for sharing knowledge, collaborative innovation and critical thinking. We look forward to gathering with the community again in Louisville, Ky.