Tori Martin is Boone Hospital Center’s Employee of the Month for May 2014. Click here to nominate someone for Employee of the Month.
When Tori Martin returned from a weeklong vacation in Jamaica, her co-workers on the Surgical Specialties unit congratulated her on the exciting news – she had gotten engaged a few days ago.
A little later that Monday, the unit had another reason to congratulate Tori, when it was announced that she was Boone Hospital Center’s Employee of the Month.
As a circulating nurse, Tori helps patients check in to the OR, reviews that their paperwork has been correctly completed, assists anesthesiologists, preps the patient for surgery and gets the sterile items that the surgeon and staff need during the procedure.
Tori has worked in this role for a combined total of 6 years. She received her nursing degree at Central Methodist University in Fayette. She was a Boone baby and has grown up in Columbia. Tori’s father, Ray Balulis, had worked in the Plant Operations department for 30 years. He had also been named Employee of the Month, in September 1999.
“My Dad said Boone was the only place to work,” Tori says.
Because Tori and Ray were so close, and she admired her father greatly, she wanted to work where he’d been happy for so many years – and in the place where she grew up.
Tori met her fiancé, Paul Newcom, while working together in the OR. The two love being active outdoors and enjoy travel to any place that’s warm, especially during the winter. After this year’s prolonged chilly weather, a tropical vacation was just what Tori needed.
While away, on the morning of her 30th birthday, Tori celebrated another milestone: “There was a spot on the beach where I would go every morning while we were on vacation. Paul came out to meet me at that spot, and he proposed there. It was sweet – and it was perfect for us.”
When asked what she likes about working at Boone Hospital Center, Tori says she most enjoys working with the surgeons and staff in the OR.
“We definitely have a family atmosphere,” she says. “If you ever need anything, there’s always somebody that’s willing to help you out.”
Tori also credits her supervisor, Heidi Woods, with creating a positive and supportive work environment. Tori’s peers feel the same way about her: last November, she was awarded a Boone Hospital Center Excellence in Nursing Award for Nursing Spirit, which recognizes nurses who have a positive attitude and show eagerness and enthusiasm while providing exceptional patient care.
Tori’s nursing spirit is why she has received her second award in less than a year. When asked about the timing of the announcement, she laughs and says, “I thought, ‘I need to buy a lottery ticket!’”
It just so happened that Paul did buy a lottery ticket that morning, which is extremely rare for him. But Tori assures us, “If we win a million dollars, I’ll still be here.”
Good luck and congratulations, Tori!