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LSU Health New Orleans Faculty Take Top State Nursing Honors

LSU Health New Orleans Nightingale Award recipients

The Louisiana State Nurses Association (LSNA) has recognized three members of the faculty of LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing with prestigious 2020 Nightingale Awards. Deborah Garbee, PhD, APRN, ACNS-BC, FCNS, Associate Dean for Professional Practice, Community Service and Advanced Nursing Practice; Program Director, Adult Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist Concentration; and Professor of Clinical Nursing, is the Nursing School Administrator of the Year. Linda Ledet, DNS, APRN, PMHCNS-BC, Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing, has been named Nurse Educator of the Year. Benita N. Chatmon, PhD, MSN, RN, CNE, Assistant Dean for Clinical Nursing Education and Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing, received the Registered Nurse Mentor of the Year award.

According to the Louisiana Nurses Foundation, an arm of LSNA, Nightingale Awards are the academy awards of the nursing profession. They recognize quality service, commitment, and excellence for Registered Nurses in the State of Louisiana. The nominations in each category are reviewed by out-of-state judges who are nursing leaders throughout the country.

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Dr. Garbee’s nomination letter said, “Dr. Garbee has consistently maintained a quality of excellence to have the LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing emerge as a leader in nursing education, research, scholarship, and service at the national level. As an administrator, her dedication to promoting student success and program outcomes has contributed to the school’s consistent national certification pass rates above the national averages for undergraduate and graduate students, along with the designation as one of the Top 10 Nursing Schools in the United States.”

“I am pleased that Dr. Garbee’s talent and accomplishments as a nurse administrator have been recognized at the state level,” comments Demetrius Porche, DNS, PhD, ANEF, FACHE, FAANP, FAAN, Dean and Professor of LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing. “Dr. Garbee bleeds purple and gold and has provided consistent, steadfast leadership developing several advanced practice nursing education programs to meet the needs of our practice partners and communities of interest. She is a humble, authentic leader.”

Dr. Ledet’s nomination letter included students’ views. “Regarding Dr. Ledet's overall teaching ability, students stated, ‘Dr. Linda Ledet is a highly qualified and exceptional instructor. Her dedication to education is evident by her talent to go above and beyond to ensure student success.’ Students also commented, ‘She has the ability to tie in her extensive array of experiences as an RN and adult psychiatric-mental health clinical nurse into her lectures for the benefit of the students.’ Regarding Dr. Ledet's passion for teaching, several students stated, ‘No matter what specialty each student in our class chooses to pursue, we each hope to have the same degree of passion and willingness to help others that Dr. Ledet has.’"
Dr. Deborah Garbee

Dr. Linda Ledet

Dr. Porche adds, “Dr. Ledet’s recognition as educator of the year is a testament to how she lives her life. She genuinely places the concern for her student’s learning and others above her self-interest. She consistently goes above and beyond expectations to ensure our nursing students are successful.”
Dr. Chatmon is described as “an outstanding role model who encourages nursing students, novice faculty, and professional nurses through mentoring on a 1:1 personal level, in groups, in the classroom, and through dissemination by multiple presentations made on the topic of mentoring. She demonstrates that mentoring is the key to providing emotional and professional support, professional retention, and fulfilling careers in the profession of nursing.”

One mentee wrote, “Dr. Benita Chatmon is an example of all that professional nurses should be. She has given me guidance and support that is thoughtful and purpose driven. Her eternal optimism and innovative spirit make me strive to do better every day!” Another said, “My most memorable and encouraging conversation with Dr. Chatmon was when she told me ‘Make preparations now because I see the leader in you 10 years from now.’ “

Dr. Benita Chatmon
Dean Porche notes, “Dr. Chatmon has a strong personal and professional interest in nursing mentorship. She is an emerging scholar in the area of nursing mentorship.”

“We congratulate Drs. Garbee, Ledet and Chatmon on their well-deserved honors,” says Larry Hollier, MD, Chancellor of LSU Health New Orleans. “We know that they are the best of the best, and it is gratifying that others recognize it also.”

LSU Health New Orleans School of Nursing is the only nursing school in Louisiana within an academic health sciences center – taught by some of the same faculty who teach medical, dental, allied health, graduate studies and public health students. The interprofessional education program further differentiates the school. It is also the only nursing school in Louisiana that offers four distinct academic degree programs – Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice, and Doctor of Nursing Science.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________ LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans (LSU Health New Orleans) educates Louisiana's health care professionals. The state's health sciences university leader, LSU Health New Orleans includes a School of Medicine with branch campuses in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, the state's only School of Dentistry, Louisiana's only public School of Public Health, and Schools of Allied Health Professions, Nursing, and Graduate Studies. LSU Health New Orleans faculty take care of patients in public and private hospitals and clinics throughout the region. In the vanguard of biosciences research, the LSU Health New Orleans research enterprise generates jobs and enormous annual economic impact. LSU Health New Orleans faculty have made lifesaving discoveries and continue to work to prevent, advance treatment or cure disease. To learn more, visit,, or