In honor of National Nurses Week, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona awarded five Arizona nurses for the Nurses Who Inspire contest.

28-year-old Banner Health registered nurse (RN), Haley Wright is one of the contest winners.

Winners were selected based on nominations showing their passion and the impact theyve had on their patients.

Wright is the definition of beauty and brains.

She works at Banner’s Tucson campus in the oncology, hematology and bone marrow transplant unit.Wright is also the 2024 Miss Glendale titleholder.

She was born and raised in Yuma, Arizona. At just 10-years-old, Wright knew she wanted to become an oncology nurse.

She unfortunately witnessed the shattering effects of cancer firsthand Her younger brother died of a rare childhood bone cancer.

“Which is kind of one of those weird things that happen in life, like ‘Why is this happening to me?’ I wanted to be in this field and now I’m experiencing it firsthand,” said Wright.

“It’s just kind of like a sick joke. Nine months after he was diagnosed, he lost his life to cancer. He was just 15.”

There’s a big need for nurses right now. Haley said a lot changed for nurses after the COVID-19 pandemic.

Data from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce shows there are nine nurses for each 1,000 people.Wright has felt the burnout within the nursing industry, but explained that it’s inevitable. She said she found peace by seeking mentorship through her coworkers.

“Especially on the oncology floor we’re seeing a lot of hard things,” Wright noted. “I think what gave me the most distress is watching people face their mortality and having to be a support system for them, be an advocate for them.”

Each award winner received money and tickets to a Diamondbacks game this summer where they’ll be recognized on the field and able to participate in the first pitch.Winners were also given $5,000 to donate to their charity of choice.

That was an easy decision for Wright.

Hunter’s Army, which supports the fight against childhood cancer, is a nonprofit she’s worked with before. The founder, Andrea Priest has a son who has been diagnosed with cancer and since overcome it.

Last year was Wright’s Third Annual It Takes a Village 5K Fun Run where she helped raise $3,000 to benefit Hunter’s Army and another local non-profit AdvoKATE.

“Because Andrea has been such a wonderful mentor to me and because I love the mission of Hunter’s Army, I would love to donate the $5,000 to them,” Wright said.

Wright told KGUN she loves Tucson and wants to stay with Banner. Winning this award further pushes her to give back to her community and utilize her pageant skills from her Miss Glendale 2024 title.

Wright will compete for the Miss Arizona 2024 title next month in Mesa, Arizona.