Nurse of the Year

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Oz Suguitan
  • 452 AMW Public Affairs

MARCH AIR RESERVE BASE, CALIF --- Senior Master Sgt. Jorge Rodriguez was presented with the Arrowhead Regional Medical Center's Nurse of the Year award early this year.

In his civilian role, Rodriguez is a registered nurse at Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, Colton, Calif., where he was nominated by his coworkers for the award. According to Rodriguez, the award recipient is selected from over 1200 nurses to celebrate one exhibiting the core values as a nurse of the ARMC, which includes innovation, leadership, teamwork, and community contribution.

Rodriguez said that after 4 years of working in active duty Air Force in the maintenance support group, he found out about becoming a medical technician from his Air Force Reserve recruiter. After tech school, he decided to go to school to become a paramedic but was convinced by a chance meeting at a restaurant with a nursing student that he should become a nurse. He then worked in the emergency room at ARMC for 7 years before moving to the trauma department, where he works today.

"We're making an impact on a community," said Rodriguez, "We see bad things, but we know that we can deal with anything that comes our way."

He is described by his peers as having a positive, contagious attitude in any condition, and is considered an informal leader, mentor, and teammate.

"Be a team player, help each other out," Rodriguez said, "It's about being the best you can be.  Come out with a positive attitude, learn, ask questions, try to grow every day."

Rodriguez continues to serve through his civilian role at ARMC and with the Reserves. He has 21 years of military service, with several deployments including three times to the Middle East. He continues to serve as a member of the 752nd Medical Unit at March ARB

"We're making an impact on the community. Helping people… trying to get you home, trying to control your pain, and get you to the right place," said Rodriguez, "This is what the military trained me to do and I'm just trying to do the best that I can."