Mary Fiebelkorn 2016 WSGNA President

Good Morning—

Will spring ever get here? (As I write this on April 4 there are snowflakes falling outside my window!) I know we are all looking forward to putting the snow shovels away and seeing tulips and daffodils blooming in some sunshine.

At this time WSGNA has 153 members. If you have not renewed your membership please consider renewing now to give you the discounts for this year’s conferences and educational materials from SGNA as well as other member benefits.

Thanks to all of you that participated in the Wisconsin GI Nurses Day celebrations. Also many thanks to those that coordinated the events—Margaret Ullman, Deb Schmeling and Mary Garcia in Milwaukee (as well as our own Sue Machones who did an excellent job of presenting her Up Close and Personal Story with esophageal cancer), Diane Brown in La Crosse, and Christine Crevcoure in Green Bay. GI Nurses Week is a great time to network and showcase the work and professionalism of GI Nurses and Associates. Our patients are very lucky to have your dedication, superior knowledge and experience.

Please “Cruz Along the River” with us on April 30 for a half day GI Conference at the Holiday Inn Milwaukee Riverfront. 5 contact hours will be offered with a continental breakfast. Bring your cash and checkbooks—there will be a Silent Auction also. Thank you to Lynn Miller and Amy Komp for planning this event along with the WSGNA Education Committee of Margaret Ullman, Deb Schmeling, and Mary Garcia. See our website for more information.

I hope that many of you can attend the 43 rd Annual SGNA Course in Seattle this year May 22-24. The annual courses are an extraordinary way to network and learn. WSGNA has helped many nurses attend by presenting scholarships to help with expenses. Some of the comments from past scholarship recipients:

  • “This was a great networking tool and conversation starter which allowed me to make new connections with colleagues.”
  • “The educational opportunities were endless offering a variety of courses to suit novice to expert.”
  •  “I attended 5 full days of the conference with great enthusiasm and embraced every opportunity to aim higher in advancing my professional development.”
  • “Attendance at the SGNA conference has kept my passion for GI nursing lit and has made a difference in my professional nursing practice for our GI patient population.”
  • “let’s not forget the vendors and seeing all the latest products as well as a re-demonstration of a seldom used item.”

The 2016 fall conference will be hosted by Multiregional SGNA instead of WSGNA as it is Wisconsin’s turn to host this multi-regional event. The planning committee consists of representatives from Wisconsin, Indiana, Michigan and Central Illinois regions. It will be held at the Country Springs Hotel in Waukesha/Pewaukee on September 16-18, 2016. It promises to be jam-packed, offering 11+ contact hours.

We are asking Wisconsin members to get creative and donate a basket for a silent auction—all of the silent auction proceeds will remain in Wisconsin for our WSGNA scholarship fund. Speaking of scholarships—don’t forget to apply for one!

This year the Board of Directors is looking for 2 new positions—Treasurer and a Director-at- Large for Newsletter/Communications. I hope that there are a few members out there that are interested in serving on the board. It is so rewarding. The BOD and the Education Committee are dedicated to providing evidence based education and fostering professional development. Please consider being a part of us—we welcome you (and we don’t bite).


Mary Fiebelkorn, RN, BSN, CGRN
WSGNA President ~ 2016

From The President