Team

Meet the amazing people behind Operation Happy Nurse!

We’re always looking for more people to lend a hand! If you would like to join the movement to improve mental health in nursing, send us a note at [email protected].

Shannon McPeek BSN, RN

President and Founder
[email protected]

Shannon graduated from Purdue University in 2016 with her Bachelor's of Science in Nursing. She started her career at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital in the Neonatal ICU, but then sought out a career in travel nursing. Shannon experienced serious anxiety associated with the nursing profession, which inspired her to create Operation Happy Nurse. She's thankful for all the amazing people who've helped her create this stress-relief haven, as well as those who've supported her along the way.

Kiley McPeek

Kiley McPeek graduated from Cornell University in 2018 with a degree in Applied Economics and Management before taking her professional skills into a career in finance. When she's not talking about the economy, she loves playing volleyball, traveling, and baking. She is so excited to be a part of the OHN family.

Samantha Reene BSN, RN, CPAN

Samantha graduated from Purdue University in 2016 with her Bachelor's of Science in Nursing. She started her career in the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital. After two years she started travel nursing. She has worked in New York City, Seattle, Los Angeles, Sydney, and is now located in San Diego. She loves the coastal life, but hopes to eventually live in her happy place: the mountains.

Dr. Pamela Karagory DNP, MBA, MSB, RN, CNE

Board Member

Dr. Karagory is the interim Head of the Purdue School of Nursing. Her focus area is nursing leadership, innovations in quality improvement, patient safety and health care systems. She is committed to creating opportunities and experiences for student learning to occur in contextual clinical environments is key in developing knowledge and skills that are relevant to today's authentic health care environment. She received her DNP from Rush University, MBA from Husson University, MSN from Saint Joseph's College of Maine, MSB from Husson University, BSN from University of Maine at Fort Kent, and RN Diploma from Saint John School of Nursing.

Dr. Ann H. White, PhD, RN

Board Member

Ann White has served as the Dean of the College of Nursing and Health Professions at the University of Southern Indiana (USI) since 2012. Prior to this position she has held multiple administrative positions within the USI nursing programs. She received her BSN from the University of Iowa, an MSN from the University of Cincinnati, an MBA from West Virginia Wesleyan College, and a PhD in nursing education from Georgia State University. Her background is in nursing leadership and management. She is certified by the American Nurse Credentialing Center in Nursing Administration. Her research interests include resiliency in practicing nurses and nursing students. She has received grant funding from HRSA, Indiana State Department of Health, Sigma Theta Tau International, and the American Nurses Foundation. Dr. White is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International, American Organization of Nurse Executives, and the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Julia Kivistik

Board Member

Julia has a diverse background in nonprofit leadership, strategy, fundraising, cause branding, cause marketing, shopper marketing, and consumer behavior and insights. Her career has been a 25+ year journey to develop mutually beneficial long-term partnerships with companies with a specific focus on retailers, consumer brands and nonprofit organizations. Her integrated approach synergizes multi-level business objectives to drive sustainable partnerships. The result is all stakeholders grow their business while making an impact on people's lives and communities. Julia has served on the Board of Directors of several nonprofits, including the Executive Board of America's Charities and the Harvard Women's Leadership Board.

Mallori Walker MSN, RN, CPNP

Board Member

Mallori Walker is a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner at IU Health Arnett in Lafayette, IN. She is also an instructor in the Purdue University School of Nursing. She leads Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work at both IU Health Arnett and the Purdue University School of Nursing. Outside of work, Mallori coaches the Purdue University Dance Team and teaches group fitness classes.

Julie McPeek

Board Member
[email protected]

A master innovator with 33+ years of experience in sales and marketing, Julie gets a thrill from crafting unique brand business models from nothing but a blank sheet of paper. She's a big-picture thinker who thrives in a challenge and excels at bringing companies together to make every opportunity win/win. Julie is a graduate of Cornell University, and owns her own marketing company Provisor Marketing.

Rhian Pritchard, CPA

Board Member

Rhian graduated from Drake University in 2016 with a double major in accounting and international business. In January of 2017 she started her career in Kansas City at RSM US LLP, a mid-market public accounting firm, and has been a licensed CPA since June 2017. In August 2018 Rhian moved to Chicago and is currently an Audit Manager on the Non-Profit and Government team in Chicago for RSM. In her free time - she is on the Board of Chicago Reach, a nonprofit organization that’s goal is to connect young people to volunteer opportunities through social activities that benefit local Nonprofits. On a weekly basis she likes to work out, cook herself healthy food, and spend time outside. Rhian loves going out to dinner at good restaurants around the city. Her overall goal is just to have a positive impact on the world and those around her. She is excited to be a part of this very awesome organization.

Brenna McPeek, MFA

Copywriter, Book Club Moderator
[email protected]

Brenna is a writer, editor, and content creator based in New York City. She holds an MFA in Fiction from Columbia University and a BA in English and Film from Cornell University. She has a particular passion for literature and culture—evident by the fact that she spends most of her free time and money at the bookstore. Brenna is the co-founder and editor of the literary magazine Fatal Flaw and is currently completing her first novel.

Carley Baker BSN, RN

Social Media Manager, Podcast Host
[email protected]

Carley graduated from Purdue University in 2015 with a Bachelors in Kinesiology. After being a personal trainer for a year, she decided to attend nursing school at Marian University, and graduated in 2017 with her BSN. After passing the NCLEX, Carley moved to Southern California to further her career and obtained her first nursing job working for Mission Hospital in their Medical-Surgical, Trauma, and Ortho unit. Currently, she also works for University of California-Irvine in their Trauma/Neuro unit.

Sarah Rudasics

Social Media Design, Events

Sarah graduated from Purdue University with a degree in Psychology and Human Development. Her desire to understand and help people from diverse populations and developmental stages led her to take an internship with Make-A-Wish Foundation, work a few years in child care, and embark on multiple adventures around the globe. Sarah lived in a small French village outside of Geneva, Switzerland for a year, followed by 7 months in Sydney, Australia. She is now finding peace in a more permanent home of San Diego, CA where she works full time in sales and as Social Media Designer for Operation Happy Nurse.

Christine Dwyer BSN, PCN, CCRN

Event Planner
[email protected]

Christine is a Registered Nurse who is originally from the East Coast. She has been living in San Diego, CA for about two years now and enjoys every minute of the perfect balance between city and beach life. Her career as a nurse has ranged from Pediatric Intensive Care to Covid Operations. She is very excited to start this journey with Operation Happy Nurse and for her contribution to this amazing organization.

Kristy Kuntz

Business Development
[email protected]

Kristy has a passion for making mental health a normalized topic of conversation in today’s world. By sharing our own experiences, she believes that we can all become stronger and that we can have more empathy and understanding for everyone around us. As someone who has struggled with anxiety, Kristy is someone who has found peace and acceptance through activities like yoga, therapy, sports / exercise and creative outlets like music. She is excited to do everything she can to bring awareness to mental health and anxiety management through her work with OHN.

Joe DeNoon

Podcast Producer
[email protected]

Joe is a digital media professional based in Brooklyn, NY. He is a 2017 graduate of Haverford College, leaving with a B.A. in English. Since graduating, Joe has worked primarily in the social media world as a community manager, copyeditor, and content creator. In college, he was a cast member of a sketch comedy group, and he continues to write and perform comedy in NY. Joe is also a trivia ace, so if you need to know a funky physics fact or the name of an obscure 80’s band, Joe is your guy. An obsessive podcast listener, he loves the medium because of the real, intimate, and just plain fun conversations that happen while on the mic, especially on Happy Hour!

Lucio Arguijo, RN

Podcast Host

Nurse Nunu is a character played by Lucio who puts a comedic play on the daily adventures and tribulations of a nurse. Lucio is a MedSurg nurse of 3 years who was highlighted as a #HealthcareHero on Jimmy Kimmel Live as well as KCOY news for fighting on the frontline as a covid nurse. His platform is based off helping new graduate nurses and other healthcare professionals with positivity, advice, and humor during this troublesome time. He initially used social media to escape all the stressors that came with working as a HCW during the pandemic. He quickly realized that the issues he was facing related to work and his anxiety was more commonplace than he expected. Coming out as a nurse dealing with anxieties was scary for him at first as he worried about the stigma but it was actually a relief for him as he was able to be himself and talk about his mental health among many other facets in his life. Travel nursing over the last year has been a blessing for him financially and mentally. It allowed him to escape the drama that comes with being a permanent staff nurse.

Dr. Lauren Ashenbrener PT, DPT

Podcast Editor

Lauren is a Purdue University graduate, where she received her B.S. in Movement & Sports Sciences. In 2017, she graduated from Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA with a Doctorate of Physical Therapy. Since graduation, she has practiced Physical Therapy in multiple clinical settings and gained valuable clinical experience and insight into the healthcare industry at large. In early 2020, she started a business to put her knowledge of the healthcare industry and her creative passions to use. Lauren is the founder of Optimize Digital Marketing, a full-service digital marketing agency aimed at enhancing small-businesses' online presence through their specializations in digital marketing and web design services for healthcare related businesses.

Samantha Wall, LCSW

Licensed Clinical Social Worker

Samantha graduated from the University of Denver in 2018 with her Masters in Social Work. Sam has a passion for working with people who experience symptoms related to PTSD, anxiety and depression. She loves being able to support the community's mental health through therapeutic services, education and resources. She is excited to help support the nurses and provide information for their mental health journeys!

Claire Lang BSN, RN

Nurse Insights Editor and Writer, Meditation Instructor
[email protected]

Claire graduated from Virginia Tech with a B.A. in English, with a focus in Creative Writing, Language, Linguistics, and Literature. After living a snowboarders dream the mountains of Steamboat Springs, C.O., she returned to school a few years later to receive her BSN-RN. She is currently an RN at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital in the Neonatal ICU. She received her RYT-200 from LifePower and completed her Meditation Teacher Training with Tracee Stanley in February, 2021. She continues to implement yoga and meditation to her daily life as stress management and mindfulness tools in the midst of a (sometimes) chaotic profession. When she’s not working, she loves to spend time with her husband and pup, travel, read, cook, and practice yoga. She is so excited to be a part of the OHN team!

Gabrielle Facquet

Book Club Moderator

Gabrielle Facquet has both a M.S and B.S from Cornell University in Operations Research and Information Engineering and has spent her career in investment banking. When she’s not working she loves spending time with her French bulldog Brie, skiing, traveling, hosting parties and of course reading. She is so excited to be a part of the OHN family.

Emily Cutler MS, RDN, LDN

Registered Dietitian
[email protected]

Emily is a Chicago-based Registered Dietitian and Health Writer, with 15 years of experience working in outpatient kidney disease clinics, long term acute care hospitals, as well as in fitness facilities. In her clinical experiences, she often worked closely with RNs in providing patient care, and so she understands what their days can be like and the tremendous amount of time and effort that they put into caring for each and every patient during their shifts. As a Registered Dietitian, Emily truly loves helping people and celebrating positive, small changes that can have a big impact on our health. She believes that every person is an individual; there is no one size fits all approach with her! Find out more about Emily at www.emilycutlernutrition.com

JJ Beasley MS, RD, LD

Registered Dietitian 

JJ grew up in Denver, Colorado in an environment where he was always doing something active whether it was hiking, skiing, or playing a number of competitive sports. Currently, JJ is a sports dietitian at the University of Georgia in their Olympic Sports department and he also has his master’s in Nutrition from Boston University. He’s always had a love for science and food and as a result grew this passion for nutrition. When he’s not working with his collegiate athletes, he is also working with his own personal clients helping them achieve a sustainable, healthy & balanced lifestyle while still allowing them to enjoy themselves. On top of that, he is also a big advocate for mental health and how that can correlate with food and nutrition. You can find out more about JJ on his website at www.craftdnutrition.com.

Meg Allen RD, LDN

Registered Dietitian

Meg is a Registered Dietitian, practicing in the Midwest for the last 15 years. She received her degree and internship training through Michigan State University. While much of her experience has been in the renal field, Meg has also held leadership roles on a national level through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, as well as locally. She is committed to helping people bridge the gap between translating science into food. Meg is passionate about how food contributes to and changes health outcomes!

Jennifer Patrick-Doig

Chef

Chef Jennifer (Jen) first started her culinary journey in her grandmother's kitchen. She attended the cooking and hospitality institute of Chicago. After many different gigs, Chef Jen found herself at Oprah's studios working for Work of Art Corp. In addition, Jennifer has been an Executive Chef at a hotel, RidgePointe Country Club, and Embassy Suites and Red Wolf Convention Center on Arkansas State University's Campus. In support of her husband, her family recently made another multiple state move to South Carolina. After nearly 20 years in the culinary industry Jenni is now returning to college to obtain a bachelor's degree to be able to teach her craft in the future.

Tatum Powell, RYT 500

Graphic Designer, Yoga Instructor

Tatum completed her 200hr in San Diego and 300hr in Rishikesh, India. Tatum leads her classes with a calm, intentional & non-judgmental voice. She incorporates creative sequencing & thought provoking meditations at the beginning of her classes. Her focus is on inspiring growth of the mental, spiritual and physical self through practice. ~ All levels welcome 🙂

Hailey Hessel

Events- Cooking

Hailey is the  Program Coordinator of the Severe Behavior Program at Marcus Autism Center in Atlanta who shows up to be a healthcare worker in the day and aspiring chef at night. Diagnosed with POTS, Chron’s, and Gluten Sensitivity along with years of being in recovery from an eating disorder, Hailey found cooking to be her self-care tool as she creates yummy recipes to share with people she loves!

Kyle Eddy

Events- Mixology

Kyle Eddy has been working in bars and nightclubs around the country for little over 6 years. Originally from the Bay Area of California, he shipped off to Marine Corps boot camp at MCRD San Diego right out of high school in 2012. After 5 years of active duty he began his tenure in the industry as a security guard in pacific beach San Diego. He began working his way up the ranks over the years as a security manager, barback, bartender and eventually a general manager of a bar in Salt Lake City, Utah. He’s recently moved to Nashville, Tennessee to take his career and passion for mixology and management further. His romantic depiction of what the hospitality industry is and what it means to him has helped him discover his love in creating cocktail menus and events for the establishments he’s worked in over the years.

Tia Webster

Brand Ambassador Program Leader
[email protected]

Tia is the Brand Ambassador Lead for Operation Happy Nurse. She is grateful to have been involved in various aspects of OHN, most recently working to invigorate the Brand Ambassador Program. Her goal for this program is to share her passion for mental health awareness, healthy mobility, and mindfulness with the intent of creating a trusting and open environment with the brand ambassador team through curated intentional monthly meetings. Tia received her education from Purdue University, and has found a real sense of home and community in the San Diego area over the past 8 years. Tia has found the outdoors to be her happy place. Yoga and meditation keep her centered. Spending time around the ocean continues to give her perspective day by day by day. Tia's days are spent balancing her outside sales position for NIBCO, selling flow control products to contractors through wholesale distribution channels, while working nights hostessing at a local eatery. Tia is unbelievably excited to be working with Shannon and help grow Operation Happy Nurse Team!

Lu Sevier

Volunteer
Advisor, Jam Session

Lu Sevier is a consultant and data scientist. She attended William and Mary and graduated in May 2016 with a degree in Biology. Her passions included data science for social good, surfing, and making mental health resources accessible for all. She is excited to be part of the OHN family.

Dori Darras M.Eng, PMP

Volunteer
Advisor, Virtual Event Management

Dori graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2016 with a Bachelor's in chemical engineering. After 5 years of working in engineering consulting, Dori went back to school to earn a Master's in Engineering Management from Vanderbilt University to further her education as a Project Manager. Scope management, design optimization, and strategic planning are skills she brings to a growing organization. Based in Washington state she spends her free time backpacking, snowboarding, or taking in the views from her hammock! Nurses have played a significant role in her life, so she is excited to give back to those who give it their all!

Natalie Jablonski, BSN

Volunteer
Brand Ambassador Program

Natalie Jablonski is a 2022 graduate from Purdue University’s Nursing Program. She is currently working on a Neuro Progressive Care unit at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan. As a new graduate, she feels passionate about protecting her mental health while providing the best patient care possible. She hopes to be able to provide valuable insight to nursing students and new graduates as they begin their amazing journey as a nurse during this chaotic time.

As a nursing student and nursing extern working at different hospitals throughout the pandemic, Natalie understands the importance of good mental health while caring for others’ physical health. As a new nurse, she can bring valuable insight and positive energy to the nursing field.

When researching ways to get involved, Natalie came across this wonderful organization and knew immediately she could help make a difference in the nursing world. Natalie looks forward to starting this journey, spreading happiness, and being a young leader in the profession. 

Allison Walls

Intern
Podcast

Allison Walls is a junior studying for her BSN at Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN. She is from Lagrange, IL, which is right outside of Chicago and would love to live there after she graduates! Her dream job is to care for children as a nurse in a Pediatric ICU like the one she currently works at as a Nursing Assistant. She is so excited to get started with OHN because she finds the mission inspiring!

Lucy Fallon

Intern
Podcast

Lucy is a rising senior at Boston University studying Behavior and Health. After she graduates she plans to attend nursing school in hopes of eventually becoming a pediatric nurse practitioner. Lucy is also incredibly passionate about mental health and is excited to take part in efforts to increase mental health support in the field of nursing!

Elise Laatz

Intern
Social Media

Elise Laatz is a senior in the School of Nursing at Purdue University. She is from South Bend, Indiana and mental health is something she has always been very passionate about, especially in the nursing profession. She is so excited to work with Operation Happy Nurse!

Riley Johnson

Intern
Social Media

Riley is a nursing student at Purdue University working on her BSN with a minor in Human Development and Psychology. She is a practicing CNA in her hometown in Northern Illinois. Riley is excited to be a part of the OHN team and to be able to make a positive impact of mental health in the nursing profession.

Nolan Nguyen

Intern
Brand Ambassador Program

Nolan is a nursing major at the University California of Irvine and his graduation year is 2025. Nolan went into nursing because of the way he has seen nurses take care of his elderly loved ones. With nurses and doctors aiding them and giving Nolan the opportunity to spend more precious moments with them, they have allowed him to appreciate the short-lived beauty of life, especially during this pandemic. Nolan joined Operation Happy Nurse because as he is studying to become a nurse in the near future, he has noticed the increasing struggle of maintaining a healthy mental state while working in the healthcare industry as a nurse and/or healthcare worker through listening to the many traumatic stories within the hospital from his relatives who are nurses.

Kaitlyn Venegas

Intern
Brand Ambassador Program

Kaitlyn is a third year bioengineering major who goes to school at University of the Pacific from Socal. What drew her to Operation Happy Nurse is the way the organization supports and provides resources to those who help us the most during our time in need. "OHN has a clear idea of what they want to accomplish and I wanted to be part of that driven and motivated team."

Taylor Jablonski

Intern
Events

Taylor is currently a nursing student at Purdue University. She went into nursing to help make a difference in the healthcare field and the lives of her patients. Taylor joined Operation Happy Nurse to help create a safe and uplifting environment for nurses. Upon graduation, she hopes to start her career in the Emergency Department. In Taylor's free time, she enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.

Maddy Trnka

Intern
Events

Maddy is a senior nursing student at Aurora University. She chose to become a nurse because she has always been interested in health care and her favorite part of the job is developing relationships with patients. Maddy wanted to be a part of OHN because she has seen the negativity that surrounds the profession of nursing and would love to work towards fixing that!

Bridget Finneran

Intern
Fundraising

Bridget Finneran and is a nursing student at Purdue University! She loves to spend time with her friends and family, read, and play with her dog. After graduation, Bridget would like to be an Oncology Nurse and eventually go to graduate school to become a Nurse Practitioner. Bridget chose nursing because she enjoys helping and making a difference in people's lives!

Annie Siffer

Intern
Fundraising

Annie Siffer and is going into her junior year at Purdue University School of Nursing! She joined nursing to help others and recently has been interested in mental health/wellbeing, which is really what sparked her interest in Operation Happy Nurse. Annie is working in an Emergency Department right now and hopes to someday work in a Pediatric ICU!

Sydney Haines

Intern
Happy Nurse Program

Sydney Haines is a third-year nursing student at Purdue University! She loves traveling, boating, listening to Harry Styles, and going on coffee dates with friends 🙂 Sydney decided to go into nursing because she wants to be able to make an impact on others. Some day she hopes to work as a nurse in pediatric hematology/oncology. Sydney joined Operation Happy Nurse because she loves the mission, wanted to start building a community of nurses around her, and be exposed to resources early on that will benefit her throughout her nursing career!

Rebecca Mahfouz

Intern
Happy Nurse Program

Rebecca has been very fortunate to work alongside nurses in Healthcare Administration for nearly a decade. Returning to school for nursing is her second degree, and she is currently enrolled in an accelerated program at Keiser University in beautiful Miami, Florida. Rebecca is so excited to be back to the hospital setting as a nurse, and has a desire to continue in leadership. Rebecca is so grateful to be a part of this supportive community.