AONL Press Releases

AONL Announces Recipients of Annual Membership Awards

Press Release

CHICAGO - April 4, 2024

The American Organization for Nursing Leadership today announced the recipients of its 2024 awards, which highlight AONL members and a hospital demonstrating exemplary leadership practices. AONL will honor the recipients during its annual conference April 9 in New Orleans.

Children’s Health to Receive AONL Prism Diversity Award

The AONL Prism Award, sponsored by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, recognizes an organization that has advanced diversity efforts within the nursing profession, the community or organization. A pediatric health system in North Texas, Children’s Health improved employee engagement through its innovative nursing professional governance structure that empowers nurses with accountability, autonomy and authority over their practice. They also increased racial and ethnic diversity within its nursing workforce from 33% to 55% through an apprenticeship program. The program assists associate degree graduates who are transitioning into their professional roles while completing a BSN bridge program and nurse residency.

Hong to Receive the Pamela Austin Thompson Emerging Leader Award

The emerging leader award, named after AONL CEO Emeritus Pamela Austin Thompson, recognizes an engaged AONL member who exhibits significant potential as a future health care leader and demonstrates exemplary leadership within their organization, community and the nursing profession. Lindsay Hong, MSN, RN, is a nurse manager at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab in Chicago. Hong launched a unit governance council led by staff nurses to increase staff engagement and encourage peer recognition. Inspired by the NCAA March Madness basketball tournament, Hong created a month-long wellness initiative comprised of team building, staff recognition, celebrations and educational sessions aimed at addressing nurse burnout, improving interdisciplinary communication and educating staff on patient safety concerns.

Talley to Receive AONL Exemplary Leadership Award

The AONL Exemplary Leadership Award recognizes a nurse leader who significantly influenced professional nursing practice, leadership and the professional development of others. Linda Talley, MS, RN, is senior vice president and chief nursing officer at Children’s National Hospital in Washington, D.C. A transformational leader, Talley’s accomplishments include exceeding Magnet benchmarks for nurses’ academic preparation by creating an environment where doctorate-prepared nurses practice while also advancing research and science. She also championed nurse wellness, adding post-critical event support for staff, overseeing the opening of the RN respite room, and securing external funding for a Program Manager for Nurse Wellness. In response to the significant increase of behavioral health needs among children, Talley led a Behavioral Event Safety Taskforce to ensure all nursing staff are trained in Crisis Prevention Intervention so they can proactively identify patient agitation, provide de-escalation measures and potentially thwart aggressive behavior that could lead to harm. 

About the American Organization for Nursing Leadership

As the national professional organization of more than 12,000 nurse leaders, the American Organization for Nursing Leadership (AONL) is the voice of nursing leadership. Our membership encompasses nurse leaders working in hospitals, health systems, academia and other care settings across the care continuum. Since 1967, the organization has led the field of nursing leadership through professional development, advocacy and research that advances nursing leadership practice and patient care. AONL is an affiliate of the American Hospital Association. For more information, visit