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Salisbury VA Health Care System's top employees recognized for 2023

Ebonee Abdulrahaim, left, and Robert Acevedo, Salisbury VA Health Care System's 2023 Employees of the Year, pose for a portrait.
Ebonee Abdulrahaim, left, and Robert Acevedo, Salisbury VA Health Care System's 2023 Employees of the Year, pose for a portrait.

Salisbury VA Health Care System is proud to recognize its clinical and non-clinical employees of the year for 2023.

2023 Salisbury VA Health Care System Clinical Employee of the Year: Robert Acevedo

Charlotte Health Care Center (HCC) Dermatology LPN Robert Acevedo has always been passionate about others. When he entered the U.S. Army at 18 and began serving as a medic, he also discovered his passion for health care. 

After leaving the military, Robert combined his two passions into a way to give back to other Veterans. Now after five years of service at the VA, he has earned recognition as the 2023 Salisbury VA Health Care System’s Clinical Employee of the Year. 

Originally from Westchester, New York, he recalled wanting to join the military for adventure and wanting to help people. “I thought that being a medic in the Army was the best way to do that,” added Robert. 

His grandfather and great-grandfather also served in the Vietnam and the Korean Wars, respectively.

Robert was stationed in Fort Hood (now Fort Cavazos), Texas, during a mass shooting tragedy in 2014. He recalls assisting the injured as a first responder during the horrific event and feeling burnt out after.

Robert then did a stint in the hospitality industry before returning to his passion: nursing. 

Never one to waste an experience, he has taken what he learned from hospitality and incorporated it into his work as a VA nurse. 

Robert’s journey to the VA started with being a patient himself and witnessing the fantastic care his grandfather also received. Those positive experiences influenced him to join the Charlotte HCC in 2019. 

“I just find the patients just so pleasant. There are things that we're able to do here at the VA that are more difficult to get done outside the VA, everything's under one roof. We're able to get things done relatively quickly here. It makes us feel good because we can visibly see the patient get better the next time they come in,” said Robert. 

Looking ahead, Robert is excited to finish his RN degree from Gaston College in May and continue to share his positive VA experiences with his fellow Veterans.

“I've tried my hardest to improve myself personally and professionally, so to be recognized, really means a lot to me. I hope to inspire others to keep improving themselves so we can make the VA better as a whole.”

Congratulations, Robert!

2023 Salisbury VA Health Care System Non-Clinical Employee of the Year: Ebonee Abdulrahaim

Charlotte Health Care Center (HCC) and Charlotte Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) Health Systems Specialist Ebonee Abdulrahaim is always ready to give 100% of herself. A native of Chester, South Carolina, and the daughter of a Veteran, as well as a wife of a Veteran, she knows the meaning of service. 

Ebonee has been with the VA for 14 years. She started in the pharmacy service as a pharmacy tech at the Columbia VA in Columbia, South Carolina, and soon realized the vast career opportunities the VA provides. 

She eventually transitioned to administrative work, becoming a program analyst, and then a records management officer before later accepting her current position at the Charlotte HCC. 

Ebonee became interested in the VA when she took her father to his appointments at the VA in Colombia. She took the opportunity to learn about the VA while visiting the facilities and soon wanted to join the team.  

“I like helping people and to be able to help people that served our country, that is meaningful for me. So not only getting the opportunity to provide care for our Veterans but also the networking that you get with being within the VA, the opportunities and training that you can explore that aren't available anywhere else,” said Ebonee. “I enjoy what I do. I enjoy helping Veterans. I enjoy making a difference, and even though it isn't direct patient care within my current role, I'm able to facilitate facility improvements that in turn impact patient care.” 

Additionally, Ebonee was instrumental in obtaining funding and working with contracting for an infusion clinic which will allow for more Veterans to be seen at the VA.

The infusion clinic project was personal for Ebonee because her father was a cancer patient who also received infusions. “Just being able to play my part in that, I get that small piece of satisfaction knowing that I was able to assist in pushing that through,” said Ebonee. 

“You don't mind coming to work and putting your best foot forward when you know that people value the work that you put in.” 

Ebonee is big on family and says that they keep her grounded. With a blended family, the married mother of eight said she and her husband are enjoying being empty nesters. Ebonee also enjoys riding her Harley Davidson motorcycle in her free time and traveling.

Congratulations, Ebonee!

For more information on the Employee of the Year awards, email the Office of Strategic Communications & Public Affairs at

At the Salisbury VA Health Care System, our mission is to fulfill President Lincoln’s promise to care for those who have served in our nation’s military and for their families, caregivers, and survivors. 

Learn more at

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