Vanessa Martin, 77, retired to Galloway after a prestigious nursing career in cleft services.
During her time, beginning as a clinical nurse specialist, she established the first education programme for nursing children with clefts and received awards for her work in supporting the families of children with cleft lip and palate.
In retirement, Vanessa has ensured her passion for nursing is shared through her work with the Dumfries and Galloway branch of the RCN where she has been secretary for five years.
Described as a ‘linchpin’ for the branch, local members wanted to see Vanessa recognised for her leadership, experience and commitment.
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Julie Lamberth, Chair, RCN Scotland Board said: “Nursing is in Vanessa’s blood.
"Having had a highly successful career, she has taken her energy and enthusiasm for the profession into retirement and is a true credit to the College.
"I’m delighted that Vanessa’s commitment has been recognised with the Award of Merit.”
Commenting on receiving her award at RCN Congress 2022 in Glasgow today, Vanessa said: “I am truly honoured to receive this award and recognition from RCN.
"It’s been a privilege to work with and support nursing colleagues in the Dumfries and Galloway branch to encourage them to engage with the College and speak up for our profession.
"We are a team and I have received a great deal of support myself from nursing colleagues and the RCN.”