Getting to Know Our Rush Medical Laboratories Managers

Rush University Medical Center is proud to celebrate our hardworking Medical Laboratory professionals

April 21, 2021
Get to know our lab managers

Rush University Medical Center is proud to celebrate our hardworking Medical Laboratory professionals for their commitment to diagnosing and treating patients. Learn more about some of the Rush Medical Laboratory managers below.

Mira Davis - Administrative Manager Get to know our lab managers

  • How long have I been at Rush: I have worked at Rush 40 plus years.
  • What I do: I am the Administrative Manager of the Department of Pathology/Rush Medical Laboratories and assistant to the Chairperson, Medical Director and Anatomic Pathology. I assist the Administrative Director when needed.
  • Why I like my job: I enjoy working with leadership, the staff I manage, and the staff throughout the laboratories who are devoted to their profession. 
  • My favorite part about working in the labs: Getting to know so many hardworking individuals and building relationships with them.
  • What I want people to know about the labs at Rush: The laboratory professionals at Rush are truly dedicated. Even though a patient may not come in contact with laboratory staff, they play a crucial role in patient care.
     

Yolanda Garcia, MS, MLS(ASCP) SBB(ASCP) - Blood Bank Manager,  Get to know our lab managers

  • How long have I been at Rush: 16 years
  • What I do: I have been the manager of the Blood Bank since 2014. I was hired as a medical laboratory scientist in the blood bank in 2005.
  • Why I like my job: I love my job because I get to continue working in the area of the medical laboratory that is my specialty (blood banking) and I have the opportunity to solve operational issues that I used to experience as a tech. I really enjoy being able to find solutions to make the daily working lives of the blood bank staff just a little bit easier. I also enjoy being able to collaborate with departments outside of the Blood Bank to improve services for our Rush patients. 
  • My favorite part about working in the labs: You never know what kind of day it will be from one day to the next. That’s the best part of this job — never a dull moment.
  • What I want people to know about the labs at Rush: We are highly trained and valuable staff who are worth more than our weight in gold. It is a highly complex area of health care, and we are specially trained to ensure the lab test results we produce are as accurate as possible to ensure the very best patient care. We love being able to provide patient care from behind the scenes.

Sandra Ortiz – Core Lab Manager Get to know our lab managers

  • How long have I been at Rush: 32 years 
  • What I do: Core Laboratory manager
  • Why I like my job: Although I have been here a long time, I never stop learning from people I work with. There is a sense of belonging when you share knowledge and a good feeling when you are able to help someone.
  • My favorite part about working in the labs: Meeting and working with people of all ages and backgrounds. 
  • What I want people to know about the labs at Rush: The Core Lab is staffed with people who are dedicated and truly devoted to patient care. While we are content to be behind the scenes, I would like to send a special shout out to the Core Lab team; they are determined and dedicated to working hard every day and always give 100%. 

Cynthia Sporleder, MS – Lab Manager, Phlebotomy (Pre-Analytics) Get to know our lab managers

  • How long have I been at Rush: May 4, 2021, will be my one year anniversary working at Rush. 
  • What I do: Laboratory manager overseeing pre-analytics, specifically inpatient phlebotomy and outpatient labs.
  • Why I like my job: I love the lab, and I am proud of being a part of the team that helps patents get treated and be well by providing timely, quality test results.    
  • My favorite part about working in the labs: Working with laboratory professionals who are also dedicated to providing vital information needed to help treat our patients. 
  • What I want people to know about the labs at Rush: Rush Medical Laboratories are staffed with a great people who are committed to providing quality results and seek continued improvement. 

Selma George, MT(ASCP) – Lab Manager, Pathology Get to know our lab managers

  • How long have I been at Rush: I have worked at Rush for 40 years and am a graduate of its Clinical Lab Science program. 
  • What I do: I am the manager of the Anatomic Pathology Laboratory and Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory (which includes genetics, HLA, flow cytometry and molecular oncology)
  • Why I like my job: I entered this profession because of my love of science and problem solving, and even though my role has changed a lot over the years, I still love the same things — science and problem solving.  
  • My favorite part about working in the labs: The opportunity to learn new things. 
  • What I want people to know about the labs at Rush: Rush is a great place to work, and we have a wonderful team of laboratory professionals that work together to provide quality patient data. It is estimated that laboratory results are approximately 75% of the objective data in a patient’s medical record. Think of the difference we are making to the outcome of each patient seen here.

Nicholas Moore, PhD, MLS(ASCP) - Assistant Director, Microbiology Lab Get to know our lab managers

  • How long have I been at Rush: 7+ years.
  • What I do: I am the assistant director of the Clinical Microbiology Laboratory and Molecular Microbiology Laboratory,  director of the BSL-3 Laboratory and an associate professor.
  • Why I like my job: Every day there is something unique, something new I get to learn. Working in a micro lab at an academic medical center means that we take care of some very complex patients, including patients seen by our infectious disease, transplant and oncology physicians. These patients can have infections caused by more unusual or rare micro-organisms, and those are typically more interesting than the everyday pathogens we identify. But that’s me being a big micro nerd.
  • My favorite part about working in the labs: The colleagues I am fortunate enough to work with. I think everyone in Rush Medical Laboratories and the Department of Pathology is exceptional. Rush is fortunate to have some very smart and talented employees working in laboratory medicine. For example, in the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we developed our own laboratory-developed assay to detect SARS-CoV-2 RNA from nasopharyngeal specimens because commercial assays were not available.
  • What I want people to know about the labs at Rush: Clinical laboratories are probably foreign to a lot of you. We are this big mystery: You collect and send specimens to us that we test, and then results appear in the chart minutes, hours or days — in my lab's case — later. A lot of work and care goes into the more than 270,000 results the microbiology lab generates annually. In that sense, we are directly involved in the care that virtually every patient will receive when they see their physician. Not only do we perform testing on a daily basis, many personnel in our department are searching for new ways to assist our clinician colleagues in establishing a diagnosis by developing our own assays and lending our diagnostic expertise to provide recommendations on follow-up or additional testing.

Related Stories