Mentor of The Year Award

Why Reward Mentors?

Mentorship, both formal and informal, can be an important ingredient to work/life integration, career success and trajectory — yet it is often something that, while prized by recipients, is rarely rewarded. In 2016, the TRUST established the Mentor of the Year Award to highlight the importance and skill of mentorship and the powerful impact a single person can have on the lives of many. The award is presented annually to a TRUST member who positively affects others via the demonstrated mentorship qualities.

Criteria for Nominees

  1. Any TRUST member who demonstrates mentor attributes including: being a connector; strong communicator; sharing wisdom; modeling or supporting work/life integration; having integrity/authenticity; and being accessible/ approachable. 
  2. Attributes should be demonstrated, exhibited, taught, confirmed, visible, “lived”
  3. Recognized as being an inspiration, and positively impacting the professional development and career trajectory of others.

This award is based on the experiences of the nominee’s formal and informal mentees, not the mentor’s personal career achievements. Anyone (member or not) may nominate someone for the award, but each nominee should be a current TRUST member.

2023 nominations will open in the fall.

2022 Mentor of the Year – Diane Nanstad

We are pleased to announce this year’s Mentor of the Year award winner is Diane Nanstad, Senior Health Network Strategy Executive at Oracle (formerly Cerner).

Diane has dedicated most of her career to health care and has served as both a leader and mentor to many women in the industry. She also currently serves as a Co-Chair of the TRUST’s Programming Committee. For those of you who know her, Diane has a huge heart and non-stop dedication to the advancement of talented women.

Diane had multiple nominations for 2022, and just some of her key attributes include:

Join the TRUST in congratulating Diane on this latest recognition. BRAVO!

2021 Mentor of the Year – Colleen Askvig

Colleen Askvig, Regional Vice President of Network Services at Anthem, was named Mentor of the Year at the TRUST’s 2021 Annual Meeting. The award highlights the skill of mentorship and the powerful impact a single person can have on the lives of many.

Colleen was nominated for this award due to the many ways she has demonstrated strong mentor characteristics, including:

2020 Mentor of the Year – Jeannine Rivet

Jeannine Rivet, retired UnitedHealth Group senior executive, has been named Mentor of the Year. The award, which highlights the skill of mentorship and the powerful impact a single person can have on the lives of many, was presented at the TRUST Annual Meeting.

Jeannine has been an impactful leader in developing and supporting other women, both during her very active professional career and during her equally active retirement. She is a current and committed mentor in The TRUST’s Mentorship Program and is a frequent informal mentor of others as she selflessly shares her wisdom and guidance.  Her mentees describe her as approachable, a giver, empathetic and pragmatic. As one mentee noted, “Jeannine provided the most powerful and effective mentorship opportunity I have experienced and opened my eyes to what being a mentor could really look like.”

Congratulations, Jeannine, on your much deserved recognition!

Past Winners

2019 Mentor of the Year – Pamela Stegora Axberg

Among many of Pamela’s unique leadership qualities, her nominator notes that Pam always welcomes diversity of people, cultures, styles, and ideas. She encourages respectful and challenging discussions, which generally leads to better ideas, approaches, and outcomes. Recognized for her commitment to deliver, grace in acknowledging and addressing mistakes and making herself available to support others, her mentee states that ‘As a mentor, she did not have to discuss integrity because she was a great role model… Her mentorship to us provided a foundation that has allowed us to become mentors to others.’

2018 Mentor of the Year – Danielle Hansen

Among the comments submitted by her nominators: “One of her jobs is as an educator and I had the pleasure to participate as a guest in her MBA class at the University of St. Thomas and was impressed at how she was able to coach her students as well as industry professionals. She was perceptive in her observations and delivered concise and useful feedback to her students as well as the industry professionals visiting her class.” “Danielle’s desire to help and impact others transcends just the work environment.” “She makes an honest effort to catch up with people and stay in touch in a way that is not forced, but consistent.”

Other Mentor of the Year Award Winners by Year:

2017: Samantha Hanson
2016: Jill Johnson