CRNA of Distinction

We recognize that our diverse members work hard and dedicate themselves in exemplary ways and we want to celebrate you! The MANA "CRNA of Distinction" honors members with outstanding dedication to the CRNA profession. "CRNAs of Distinction" is featured on the MANA website, via email, and in the MANA e-newsletter.  Nominate yourself, a peer, or an employee who has gone above and beyond to be a MANA "CRNA of Distinction". 

Click here to complete a nomination form.


MANA's December 2019 CRNA of Distinction

Rozanna Penney

Rozanna became a CRNA in 2009 after obtaining a Master’s in Science of Nurse Anesthesia (MSNA) from St. Joseph’s Hospital School of Anesthesia for Nurses and the University of New England. Prior to becoming a CRNA, she worked as an ED and ICU RN for five years.

Rozanna is known as both a talented clinician and inspiring leader. In 2016, she assumed the role of Chief Nurse Anesthetist at Heywood Hospital in a new anesthesia group which, at the time, was introducing the hospital to CRNAs for the first time ever. In helping establish this new group, Rozanna not only ensured that its CRNAs would be able to practice to the full scope of their licenses, but she also played an instrumental role in making CRNAs become eligible for “active member” status on the hospital’s medical staff. In addition to her ongoing role as Chief CRNA, her tenure at Heywood is notable for her initial appointment and subsequent promotions to various leadership positions on the hospital’s management team. She has served as Associate Director of Perioperative Services, then Director of Perioperative Services and, most recently, she was appointed to serve as a member of the hospital’s senior leadership team in the roles of Heywood Healthcare’s Vice President of Perioperative Services and Chief Advanced Practice Provider (APP) Officer.

Rozanna is quick to note that her success has been possible because she works with and leads a phenomenal team of people. She is surrounded by talented and supportive surgeons, anesthesiologists and APPs, compassionate and caring nurses, techs and staff and she is a member of a visionary senior leadership team. Lastly, Rozanna feels very strongly that each and every one of the CRNAs on her team are “CRNAs of Distinction”, including Christopher Barnes, CRNA, Anthony Craig, CRNA, Sarah Lamoreaux, CRNA, Alison Willnow, CRNA and Heather Archambeault, CRNA. She is deeply grateful for their support as well as their skills and professionalism which make each and every one of us proud to be a CRNA.



What made you choose CRNA as a career path?

I loved being an ED nurse and an ICU nurse. Anesthesia had the best of both worlds – critical care of ICU and variety of ED. It is the best decision I have ever made.

From your experience, what are the best things about being a CRNA?

Being able to take away people’s pain.

The worst?

Tragic situations beyond our control. 

Using a single word or short phrase, how would you describe yourself?

Hardworking and resourceful. When there is a will, there is a way. 

If money/time was no issue, what hobby would you get into?

Traveling and scuba diving.

What job would you be terrible at?

Flight attendant. 

What would be the most amazing adventure to go on?

Around the world trip with my family

What small things make your day better?

Seeing people smile. 

What is your claim to fame?

I love to cook and make amazing five-course meals. I’m also really good at being a Secret Santa.

What is the best single day on the calendar?

Any day can be that day.

Most annoying question people ask you?

“How do you do it all?”

What are your most looking forward to in the next 10 years?

Watching my kids grow. 

What is the best way to start the day?

Snuggling under a cozy blanket while enjoying a hot cup of coffee. 

What do you hope never changes?

Family traditions.

What movie or book title best describes your life?

Modern Family (Although I know it’s not a movie…)

What are you most likely to become famous for?

My kids are constantly pretending to have a YouTube channel, so if I ever become famous it will be because I accidently photobombed them. 

What is the best compliment you’ve received?

Being nominated for CRNA of distinction.

Who inspires you to be better?

My kids, my husband, my parents, my amazing team at work. 

What are some of the events in your life that made you who you are?

Moving to Iowa from Russia, meeting my husband, being a mom to my children and a stepmom to my stepdaughters.

There are 2 types of people in this world. What are the 2 types?

Those who put people into categories and those who don’t.

What is your favorite smell?


If you had to change your name, what would you change it to?

I wouldn’t, I like my name.

What risks are worth taking?

Those that feel right.

What do you take for granted?

My health 

What gets you fired up?

Poverty, injustice and cruelty in the world.

What irrational fear do you have?


What is the last adventure you went on?

Going to Disney during school vacation with six kids and only three adults.

What were some of the turning points in your life?

Moving to the US, becoming a nurse, going to anesthesia school, meeting my husband, becoming a mother, becoming a stepmother.

What are 3 interesting facts about you?

I love to travel and can pack our entire family of 6 in record time.
I flew from Russia to US and back by myself as a teenager several times.
My first job in the US, while I was learning English and going to school, was a housekeeper in the motel.

What do you want to be remembered for?

Kindness and dedication. 

What is the best thing about you?

I am fiercely loyal.

What bends your mind every time you think about it?

That at this day and age, knowing everything we know from history, some can still justify a war and killing of innocent people.

What are the top 3 things you want to accomplish before you die? How close are you to accomplishing them?

Being an awesome mom, wife, and professional leader. All are a work in progress. Somedays I feel like I’m killing it, other days not so much.

What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned?

Hard work beats talent every time when talent doesn’t work hard.


Visit the Past CRNA of Distinction Library to learn about previous recipients like Col. Brian Campbell, Trish Labieniec, CRNA, and Mike Storey.

Inspired to share your story? Click here to complete a nomination form.