The Nightingale Society

I attribute my success to this: I never gave or took an excuse.” – Florence Nightingale

Nightingale Society Scholarship Recipient Liliana Covaliu, originally from Romania, has a multitude of excuses not to continue advancing her nursing education, she is the mother of five, cares for her elderly parents and English is her fourth language. However, following in the footsteps of Nightingale, she is not one for excuses. Covaliu was thrilled to learn of the Nightingale Society and be one of the first scholarship recipients. Covaliu plans to apply again upon completion of her BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) for another scholarship for her MSN (Master of Science in Nursing).

Liliana Covaliu and Diane Freeman

The Nightingale Society was created to help encourage continuous improvement and ease the financial burden additional training may cause for the nurses at CHI St. Luke’s Health. Diane Freeman, Chief Nursing Officer stated, “nursing requires constantly improving and specialization in training. Advanced training translates to improved diagnostics and better patient care.”

Inspired by Florence Nightingale, the Nightingale Society at CHI St. Luke’s seeks to aid nurses in their advancement in the valiant profession of nursing. Nurses provide compassion, comfort, and care; they are an essential component to the success of any hospital. The scholarship funds generated by the Nightingale Society are the result of generous contributions from donors including Brad and Kylene Beers, the Haag Family Foundation, physicians from the Caduceus Society including Dr. Peter Shedden, Dr. Vincent Aquino, and Dr. Syed Raza, Douglas “Woody” Lyons, Jr. and Michael and Vicki Richmond.

Dr. Vincent and Yvette Anquino

The first scholarships awarded by the Nightingale Society were distributed in the spring of 2019, with four nurses (Liliana Covaliu, Keira Ruben, Teresa McKenzie, Elaina Perry) each receiving $3300/year for 2 years. The funding can be used for technical training and advanced certification programs, advanced nursing degrees, employees who want to pursue nursing, clinical research and to retain top talent in nursing. Jim Parisi, President and CEO of CHI St. Luke’s Health announced the winners and remarked, “it is important for me and our organization to take time out to recognize our nurses and how much they do for our organization. Nursing holds a special place to me in my leadership role here, as I am a registered nurse as well. I may not be at the bedside with you every day, but I understand the challenges you face to meet your patients’ needs.”

For more information on the Nightingale Society, please contact Carolyn Hays at or 832.355.5855.

Scholarship Recipients with Diane Freeman

Dr. Peter Shedden, Jim Parisi, Diane Freeman, Dr. Vincent Aquino, Brad Beers


Boots and Bling 2018

Photography by Pinky Promise Photography

Nearly 300 guests gathered in festive western attire and bling to raise funds for The Woodlands Methodist School on November 2 at The Woodlands Country Club Palmer Course. Led by their fundraising committee and chairs, Sarah Przybyla, Ali May and Stacei Bible, the Parent Enrichment Organization (PEO) spent countless hours to ensure a memorable evening for all. Tables were adorned with natural wood and white hydrangeas, and lanterns on the fireplace illuminated the room.

Dr. Ann K. Snyder, Head of School, welcomed guests to the annual fundraiser. Parent Kerri Bigler led the prayer, after which guests enjoyed a delicious, sit-down dinner before two-stepping the night away under the stars to the live band, Willow Creek Junction.

The evening included a silent and live auction featuring items like a luxury ocean-view villa in Costa Rica, a Louis Vuitton signature handbag, Principal for the Day and unique canvas paintings from each class. There was also a wine pull, jewelry pull, mystery box and even a golden ticket opportunity.

Funds raised help further The Woodlands Methodist School’s mission to provide a joyful, Christian education through which children develop a lifelong love of learning, pursue excellence and positively impact the world. With the generous support of those who attended, The Woodlands Methodist will be able to purchase vans for their traveling athletics, make playground improvements and much more.

The Boots & Bling event was made possible through the generous sponsorship provided by AGAPE Physicians/CHI St. Luke’s Health (The Bigler Family) and Wright Business Technologies (The Wright Family), as well as the many other sponsors and underwriters of the evening.