St. Luke’s employee shares her own book to read across America | The Valley Book

es flag

Photo caption: Paula Stoneback reads to children at Quakertown Elementary School.

Children at Quakertown Elementary School received a special treat during Read Across America week. Not only were they read, but they also heard the book from the author herself, Paula Stoneback, of Green Lane.

Stoneback was one of more than 100 St. Luke’s University Health Network (SLUHN) employees who participated in Read Across America Week, March 2-6, which is celebrated to promote literacy and aims to bring reading to while simultaneously educating people about its benefits. Stoneback, Senior Financial Analyst at SLUHN, has written four children’s books. She read her book, Suzie Q Buckaroo, Sleepover at the Zoo, Part 1, to elementary classes.

“It was a great experience to go into the schools to meet and read to kids,” said Stoneback, who has participated in Read Across America with SLUHN for the past six years. (During COVID, Read Across America was held virtually.) This is the first year Stoneback was asked to read her own book to the children, and she happily did so.

As a reader, Stoneback said the kids always have great questions for her and are especially interested in what it’s like to be an author, she said. “Many raise their hands and say they want to be authors too,” says Stoneback, encouraging them to write down their ideas. “I tell them you have to put it in writing.”

Stoneback has worked in the accounting department at St. Luke’s for eight years. She handles finances for Monroe Hospital, SLETS, clinical trials, gift shops and the fitness centers. Before joining SLUHN, Stoneback was a wedding photographer and owned her own business for 20 years. “I honed my writing skills with a successful blog written about each wedding,” she said. When she came to SLUHN, she quit the business, but she had always had a desire to write. “I thought I would write mystery novels,” she said, “but in 2018 I ended up writing children’s books.” Her first book was for children aged 7 to 12, North Pole East. Her second book, Mighty Madison, Dreams Do Come True, was for younger children. Both books are illustrated by Parker Simpson.

Stoneback has since written a part 2 for Suzie Q Buckaroo, Sleepover at the Zoo. Stoneback himself illustrated both Suzie Q books, which are also for younger children. All her books are available on Amazon. Stoneback signs books for all SLUHN employees who request them.

For this year’s Read Across America celebration, St. Luke’s Department of Community Health partnered with 26 schools in the region.

St. Luke’s identifies need through our Community Health Need Assessments and works with our school communities year-round to consistently connect students, staff and families to care, education and resources. Read Across America provides the opportunity to further bring our St. Luke’s staff and mentoring initiatives into our schools to demonstrate commitment to the communities we serve.

About St. Luke’s

Founded in 1872, St. Luke’s University Health Network (SLUHN) is a fully integrated, regional nonprofit network of more than 20,000 employees providing services on 15 campuses and more than 300 outpatient clinics. With annual net sales of $3.4 billion, the network’s service area includes 11 counties in two states: Lehigh, Northampton, Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Montgomery, Monroe, Schuylkill and Luzerne counties in Pennsylvania and Warren and Hunterdon, New Jersey. St. Luke’s hospitals operate the largest network of trauma centers in Pennsylvania, with the Bethlehem Campus being home to St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital.

Dedicated to advancing medical education, St. Luke’s is the preeminent teaching hospital in eastern central Pennsylvania. In partnership with Temple University, the network established the Lehigh Valley’s first and only four-year medical school campus. It also operates the nation’s longest continuously operating School of Nursing, founded in 1884, and 45 fully accredited graduate medical education programs with more than 400 residents and fellows. In 2022, St. Luke’s, a member of the Children’s Hospital Association, opened the Lehigh Valley’s first and only freestanding facility dedicated entirely to children.

SLUHN is the only Lehigh Valley-based healthcare system to earn Medicare’s Five stars ratings (the highest) for quality, efficiency and patient satisfaction. It is both a Leapfrog Group and Healthgrades Top hospital and a Newsweek World’s Best hospital. The network’s flagship University Hospital has the 100 Top Major Teaching Hospital Designated 11 times overall and eight years in a row by Fortune/PINC AI, including in 2023 when it was identified as THE COUNTRY’S #4 EDUCATIONAL HOSPITAL. In 2021, St. Luke’s was identified as one of the 15 Top Health Systems national. Utilizing the Epic electronic medical record (EMR) system for both inpatient and outpatient services, the network is a multi-year recipient of the Mostly wired award recognizing the breadth of SLUHN’s information technology applications, such as telehealth, online scheduling and online pricing information. The network is also recognized as one of the state’s lowest-cost providers.

Information provided to TVL by:
Sam Kennedy

Leave a Comment