Kendra Pineyro

FON Photos edited x pineyro

Kendra Pineyro


Clinical Nurse III

Intensive Care Unit

Duke Regional Hospital


Duke Regional Hospital Medical Staff Award for Excellence in Nursing Practice


Kendra graduated from nursing school in 2018 and has worked since then at Duke Regional Hospital.  She is a third-generation nurse.  When the pandemic hit, she witnessed the stress on her colleagues and looked for ways to support them.  Initially, she started a meal train to ensure the team was well fed, then secured donations from companies to create goody bags to boost morale.  Next, she started a Facebook group called the Wishlist for Healthcare Workers as a way for Duke employees to send little gifts to friends and colleagues across the health system.  What started as a small group quickly exceeded 1,000 members across Duke!


This nurse advises new nurses to ask questions.  Although it seems like something so small, people are afraid to ask questions, especially from seasoned nurses.  She reminds them that we are here to help them.  We are here to make them feel more comfortable, and everybody has a different intelligence level and has a different level of nursing experience.  Some people have been nurses for a few days, while others have been nurses for years.  So, they shouldn’t be afraid to ask questions, because everybody has different knowledge levels, and somebody else might know something different that they don’t.


This nurse’s commitment to excellence in the nursing field is displayed by providing exceptional patient care through advocacy, mentoring, and strong leadership. This nurse’s ability to support staff in any and all situations is nothing less than commendable.

Throughout the pandemic this nurse has been able to obtain her specialty certification, CCRN, from the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN), continued to precept new hires in the unit, climbed the Clinical Ladder acquiring the Clinical Nurse III designation, is a peer support representative to her teammates, and is now enrolled as a full-time student in the Duke University School of Nursing Nurse Practitioner program in the acute care practitioner pathway.  Although this amount of dedication is astounding, this nurse has also been the Co-Captain for the unit’s Heart Walk Team and has helped to raise more than $14,000 in the last two years!


This nurse was the brain behind “Wish List for Healthcare Workers.”  This wish list is for medical staff to gift one another with small items, but what has been gifted is anonymous until it’s received as a surprise delivery at their home.  This was such a morale booster for not only our unit, but also the entire health system!  What started as a small group quickly exceeded 1,000 DUHS members!  This nurse had to start managing the people who wanted to join the group due to requests coming from another nearby hospital and health system.  When reflecting on this group, I realize it benefited not only the health system staff, but also supported local jobs through deliveries and product purchases.


This nurse started a meal train to ensure the team was well fed during such a high stress time.  Donations came from anonymous donors, staff, and staff families as an answer to this nurses’ call for help, providing individual servings of meals for each shift.  While this was not something that could be done every day, the allocation of funds made it possible to provide meals that lasted through those crucial first few months.  She also had a little snack cabin put in on the unit.

This nurse also accepted donations from an Amazon wish list and created 100 gift bags for staff members in the ICU.  The gift bags included gum, lip balm, hand lotion, pens and hand sanitizer.


During the past three years of working alongside this nurse, I have been privileged to witness a passion for caring that defines nursing to its core.  The past two years have been a tragic test of the resilience in health care and have had a devastating effect on the nursing profession.  This nurse saw the overwhelming demand that caring for patients during a pandemic was having on our staff and decided to take action.  It was clear that we needed support, and this nurse independently and proactively reached out to companies to get the support we so desperately needed; to name a few, Careismatic provided scrubs to change into after caring for COVID patients, Verb Energy sent energy bars, Vital Proteins donated boxes of collagen protein drinks, and Not Your Mother’s gave the unit hygiene products.


The dedication and devotion that this nominee has to the profession of nursing is immeasurable in words, but it’s easy to comprehend why they are a phenomenal candidate for the Friends of Nursing Award.


Friends of Nursing Gala 2021

Friends of Nursing Gala 2021

Friends of Nursing Gala 2021