TANA's Patty Cornwell Practitioner of the Year Award

This is your chance to submit a candidate for TANA's 2023 Patty Cornwell Practitioner of the Year Award, and we're looking for nominations for outstanding CRNAs in your area!

This award is intended to "recognize excellence in anesthesia practice as a clinician, educator, and/or researcher." If you know a practitioner who fits the bill, then please nominate him or her by submitting the required information!

Eligibility and requirements, with submittal information is discussed in more detail below with the deadline for submissions on September 1, 2023! We want to make this easy for you so call the TANA office if any questions at 615-329-3450.

The winner will be celebrated at the TANA Annual Business Meeting, which will be in-person this year on October 7th! Please don't miss this opportunity to recognize a well-deserving peer!


The 85th Annual Meeting TANA's 2022 Patty Cornwell Practitioner of the Year Award was awarded to Brett Clay, DNP, CRNA, APRN.

This award is voted on annually by the TANA Board and given to a TANA member in good standing who has made a significant contribution to the profession of nurse anesthesia in Tennessee. The purpose of this award is to “recognize excellence in anesthesia practice as a clinician, educator and/or researcher." The winner of this award is announced and recognized each year at TANA’s Annual Meeting.

2022 Practitioner of the Year Recipient
Brett Clay, DNP, CRNA, APRN - Hermitage, Tennessee

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This year we honor our 2022 Patty Cornwell Practitioner of the Year, Brett Clay, DNP, CRNA, APN.

Dr. Clay has unselfishly contributed to the Tennessee anesthesia community over the years. He contributes to the clinical arena serving in many capacities, but he also brings a unique educator aspect to the region, as well.

Dr. Clay has been working at Vanderbilt University Medical Center since 2010. He quickly demonstrated leadership qualities by becoming a resource to many colleagues, especially new hires. He was selected to serve in the Cl role, which is the role of Charge CRNA for the day in the division where he assists the attending in charge of running the operating room board and being a resource to not only CRNAs, but student registered nurse anesthetists and residents regarding cases. Dr. Clay has demonstrated his diverse knowledge by graciously taking on any assignment that requires anesthesia resources. In addition to his clinical and Cl duties, he also assumes mentoring roles of newly hired CRNAs assisting in their transition to VUMC. This requires him to be a resource on the workflow of the department and the requirements of our CRNA team.

Dr. Clay has been recognized for his consistent demonstration of exceptional credo behavior by making those he serves his highest priority, having a sense of ownership and professional conduct, respecting privacy and confidentiality, communicating effectively and being committed to colleagues.

Dr. Clay has served on many committees providing a voice of representation of the CRNA team.

In addition to everything previously mentioned, Dr. Clay maintains his faculty appointment at MTSA as an instructor and mentor. He has, also, served as a member on MTSA DNAP Project Dissertation Committee, mentoring those students pursuing their doctoral projects.

The magnitude of his contributions to the profession is not acknowledged enough not only considering his full-time clinical role, but the evidence of the importance of preparing the future generation of CRNAs. His dedication to teaching SRNAs in the classroom and the clinical setting sets Dr. Clay apart from all others as he can influence the future CRNAs on multiple levels of their training. Students have often said that they enjoy his teaching methods and his approach to all students as he treats them as equals, rather than students.

This garnishes the respect that he deserves and ultimately receives from his students and his colleagues at work. Dr Clay continues to educate those around him by presenting on multiple platforms from the classroom at MTSA, the podium at CRNA Educational Rounds at VUMC, at the TANA Conference (2009), at the Anesthesia Technologists Educational Conferences, and at other universities.

We hope that through this brief display of his achievements and contributions clinically to his patients and dedication through education to his SRNA students, that you draw the same conclusion that we have of his valuable meaning to the profession. It is our belief that he exhibits the true meaning of Practitioner.

Please help us congratulate, Dr. Clay on winning the Patty Cornwell Practitioner of the Year Award for 2022!

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