AANA Foundation Logo


Advocate of the Year Award

Deadline:  April 1

Download Application materials for the Advocate of the Year Award. Applications for this award will be held and considered for three years after submission. 

The Advocate of the Year Award, established in 2006 by the AANA Foundation, is presented to an AANA Foundation advocate or supporter for outstanding commitment to the nurse anesthesia profession through both individually supporting the AANA Foundation and also encouraging others to do the same, or advocating for the profession in a magnanimous way. 

2020 Award 

Amy Graham  Sarah Langan

The Advocate of the Year Award is presented to an AANA Foundation Advocate(s) for outstanding commitment to the nurse anesthesia program through individually supporting the AANA Foundation and encouraging others to do the same. The 2020 Advocates of the Year are  Amy Graham, MS, CRNA (pictured left) and  Sarah Langan, MSN, CRNA (pictured right) who are Co-Advocates for Nebraska.

Graham and Langan have been friends since their first day of anesthesia school in 2003. Graham and Langan graduated together from the Bryan LGH School of Nurse Anesthesia at the University of Kansas in 2005. Both Graham and Langan served the Nebraska Association of Nurse Anesthetists board and as adjunct faculty for the Bryan LGH School of Nurse Anesthesia as clinical instructors. Graham and Langan have served as Nebraska State Co-Advocates for the AANA Foundation from 2012 to the present. In more than 8 years serving the AANA Foundation in this capacity, the duo has created various events in support of the AANA Foundation including raffles, silent auctions at state meetings, and establishing an annual fundraising golf tournament to raise funds for the AANA Foundation. The annual golf tournament is in its sixth year and has become a successful way for the Nebraska co-advocates to bring CRNAs and SRNAs together from around the state to support nurse anesthesia education and research. In addition to these efforts, the duo has risen to meet the challenges of 2020 and conducted a virtual 5K called the “Husker CRNA RU(N95)”. Together, Graham and Langan have worked diligently to raise awareness and funds for nurse anesthesia education and research and engage fellow Nebraska CRNAs in their good work.

Previous Advocates of the Year

  • 2019 - Yana Krmic, MSN, CRNA, APRN
  • 2018 - Desiree Mauppins, BSN, MSN, CRNA, APRN
  • 2017 - Garalynn Tomas, MEd, CRNA
  • 2016 - Christina Kloepping, BSN, RN
  • 2015 - Russell Lynn, MSN, CRNA, APN (posthumously)
  • 2014 - Kathleen Thibeault, MSN, CRNA
  • 2013 - Stephanie May, DNAP, CRNA
  • 2012 - Celeste Hinzmann, CRNA
  • 2011 - David Schwytzer, BS, CRNA, ARNP
  • 2010 - Vicki Coopmans, PhD, CRNA
  • 2009 - Wilma Gillis, CRNA, ARNP
  • 2008 - Danette Plautz, MSN, CRNA
  • 2007 - Richard Kirschke, BA, CRNA
  • 2006 - Dianna Heikkila, CRNA