APSHO Presents Second Annual Mary Pazdur Award for Excellence in Advanced Practice in Oncology to Dr. Jody Pelusi

Published by Claudine Kiffer 4 years ago

At the 7th annual JADPRO Live conference, representatives from the Advanced Practitioner Society for Hematology and Oncology (APSHO) presented the second annual Mary Pazdur Award for Excellence in Advanced Practice in Oncology to Jody Pelusi, PhD, FNP, AOCNP®, of HonorHealth Research Institute in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Dr. Pelusi, a nurse practitioner, educator, and clinical trial sub-investigator with more than 40 years of experience caring for patients with cancer, accepted the award from John A. Gentile, Jr., Chairman of Harborside, and Tina Harris, MS, NP-C, AOCNP®, chair of the APSHO Awards and Recognition Committee, on stage at JADPRO Live. The early afternoon award presentation ceremony included a video highlighting Dr. Pelusi’s work that had been filmed on location in Arizona.


First and foremost a champion for her patients and their families, Dr. Pelusi has been a pioneer in countless “firsts” in Arizona throughout her career. Among other achievements, she co-founded the state’s first oncology chemotherapy course for nurses, developed the first family caregivers training program, developed the first and longest running cancer support group, coordinated the establishment of the oncology services department within Indian Health Services at the Phoenix Indian Hospital, and developed the first mobile program for cancer screening and early detection to individuals in extremely remote rural areas of Arizona.

According to Dr. Pelusi’s nominator for the award, colleague Gayle Jameson, RN, MSN, ACNP-BC, AOCN®, “She literally changed the landscape of access to oncology care in Arizona.”

In her nomination essay, Ms. Jameson, who has been Dr. Pelusi’s colleague for several decades, described her as a caregiver who has “exerted a dynamic influence on advancing the quality of care for patients with cancer and enhancing safe practice, but also has never lost her passion to educate nurses, health care providers, and the community on the unique needs of our dear oncology patients and their families.”

Another of Dr. Pelusi’s colleagues said, “Dr. Pelusi is an excellent mentor, and I have always looked to her for guidance in my own oncology career. I admire her versatility, resourcefulness, and creativity. She has been and continues to be an inspiration for all who have had the pleasure of knowing her and working with her.”

APSHO will begin accepting nominations in December for the third annual Mary Pazdur Award for Excellence in Advanced Practice, which will be presented at the 2020 JADPRO Live conference, October 14-17, in Minneapolis. The winner will receive an honorarium and an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2020 conference, as well as recognition at the meeting and in the Journal of the Advanced Practitioner in Oncology (JADPRO).

About the Mary Pazdur Award for Excellence in Advanced Practice

The annual award, created in honor of Mary Pazdur, RN, MSN, is given to an APSHO member who consistently demonstrates exemplary leadership and outstanding contributions to clinical practice, research, or education in the hematology/oncology field. Ms. Pazdur, who dedicated her professional life as a nurse practitioner to bettering the clinical care and outcomes of cancer patients, was an early champion for the creation of JADPRO, the premier peer-reviewed publication for advanced practitioners and the official journal of APSHO.

To learn more about the Mary Pazdur Award, please visit


The Advanced Practitioner Society for Hematology and Oncology (APSHO) is a society for advanced practitioners: nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, physician assistants, pharmacists, and other oncology health-care professionals. The mission of APSHO is to actualize oncology patient care that is high quality, cost effective, and delivered through collaborative practice models by optimizing the role of the advanced practitioner as an integral member of the care team.