Epic Excellence: Saying Thanks for the Extra Effort

The implementation of Epic as the new clinical and business health information technology platform, with its integration with NewYork-Presbyterian and Weill Cornell Medicine, has required additional work by many at ColumbiaDoctors. We introduced Epic Excellence Recognition as a way to show appreciation for that extra effort. Nominators responded positively to the introduction of the honor, and leadership has taken time in recent weeks to recognize some of the first colleagues to earn the Epic Excellence spotlight: 

ColumbiaDoctors' Chief Medical Officer Nick Homma, MD, left, stands next to CUIMC's Department of Medicine’s Sherry Kohn, NP, and Justin Aaron, MD.

Chief Medical Officer Nick Homma, MD, left, honored the Department of Medicine’s Sherry Kohn, NP, and Justin Aaron, MD.  Sherry Kohn’s nominator said Ms. Kohn has been involved since day one of the Epic build and is now an instructor, sharing her knowledge and experience that has proved vital to her team.  

Dr. Aaron’s nominator described him as working tirelessly to ensure that the Division of Infectious Diseases is prepared for the Epic transition.

Both were recognized for taking on this additional work while maintaining busy clinical practices.

ColumbiaDoctors' Chief Medical Officer Nick Homma, MD, left, and Justin Bernardo, right.



Justin Bernardo supports the Department of Urology’s Revenue Cycle and Operations. Johanne Morgan, center, nominated Mr. Bernardo, saying she is confident the department will have a successful transition to Epic because of his many contributions to preparing the team for all of the Epic milestones. 


ColumbiaDoctors' Chief Medical Officer Nick Homma, MD, right, with Practice Manager Francine Castillo, Larry Beilis (not pictured) and Michael Kluger, MD.

Leaders in the Department of Surgery received multiple nominations. Practice Manager Francine Castillo, MS, Larry Beilis, MHA (not pictured), and Michael Kluger, MD, were recognized for being responsive and diligent in their work to meet Epic deadlines. Dr. Kluger has taken on a number of additional roles to support the EpicTogether project.

ColumbiaDoctors' Chief Medical Officer Nick Homma, MD, left, and Ali Mencin, MD.


The Department of Pediatrics recognized the work of Ali Mencin, MD, who received multiple nominations from colleagues who recognize all he has done to go above and beyond in making sure the Epic transition meets the needs of the clinical team as well as patients.

Epic Excellence Recognition will also go out to:

  • Zobeida Altragracia, Neurosurgery
  • Jennifer Beirne, LPN, FPO Operations/CMIO team
  • Stephanie Blaney, MHA, Orthopedic Surgery
  • Yudelka Garcia, NP, Nurse Practitioner Group
  • Diana Hernandez, MHA, Nurse Practitioner Group
  • Anna Karavangelas, MHA, Orthopedic Surgery
  • Danielle Katayen, Hematology/Oncology
  • Nabella Khan, MBA, Medicine
  • Amanda Linehan, CMIO/HIM teams
  • Tina Oommen, FPO Operations

In addition to highlighting these individuals, leadership sends thanks to the nominators. We hope this program helps you appreciate all of the additional work that so many are taking on and supports your efforts to address the cultural change driven by the redesign of the electronic medical record. We value your input as nominations shine the spotlight on colleagues at all levels of our organization.

Nominate Someone You Want to Recognize

If you know someone within ColumbiaDoctors who has taken on additional work to support the Epic implementation, nominate them for Epic Excellence by filling out this brief survey. The selection committee will review your entry. Please note consideration is for those taking on Epic roles and responsibilities in addition to the work they already perform for their teams. We hope to celebrate colleagues each month.