Chelsea Pease Engle is a caregiver, in every sense of the word.
On Nov. 3, she received the March of Dimes Heroes in Action award at their 13th annual gala in Oklahoma City for her role as a Charge Nurse at Stillwater Medical Center. As the Charge Nurse, she fills the managerial role of balancing the responsibilities of all the registered nurses. In addition to caring for her patients, she must also be aware of everything that is going on during her shift.
According to the March of Dimes website, the Charge Nurse category considered nurses in all clinical areas who function in the Charge, Lead or Shift role, including the House Supervisor. There were five finalists for the award, including Pease Engle, and when she won, she couldn’t believe it.
“I hope it encourages small-town kids with ‘small-town educations.’ I hope it encourages the single mom who wants to pursue her dreams but is afraid to fail. I hope it encourages nurses from the smaller facilities. I hope it encourages those who doubt themselves and think it could never happen,” she wrote on her Facebook page Nov. 9. “I hope it encourages those who are hesitant to take the leap because they think they will fail. I hope it encourages you. All of you. Because truth be told, I didn’t win that award all by myself. I’ve been beyond blessed by God, my family, my friends, my work family, and all of those who have taken the time and invested in me. I could not pursue the career I’ve been chosen for without you all, and for that I’m very grateful.”
Pease Engle is from Fairfax, a small town with a population of less than 3,000 people. She graduated from Woodland High School but didn’t start nursing school at Northern Oklahoma College until a few weeks after her 22nd birthday, she said in her Facebook post. She was a single mother with a 7-week-old baby at the time, but she was determined and graduated to become a registered nurse.
“I’ve always had my parents and my family cheering me on though,” she wrote in the post. “My dad was my biggest fan and my most reasonable critic. My mom has helped with all of my kids and our crazy schedules.”
Her father is the late George Pease III, who passed away from cancer last November. Because of her family’s unwavering support, she has been at Stillwater Medical for 14 years and said working at the hospital is more like family than a job.
Pease Engle was also recognized as part of the “Great 100 Oklahoma Nurses Foundation for 2022.” According to the Stillwater Medical Center Authority Board of Trustees’ Sept. 27 report, Engle and others were selected for the award “based on their concern for humanity, their contributions to the profession of Nursing, and their mentoring of others.”
Pease Engle resides in the Grayhorse Indian Village with her family. She also serves as a committee cook for the Grayhorse Drumkeeper Inlonshka committee.