I agree, it definitely SHOULD go on whoever is best for the job with the most experience and top notch references. Unfortunately, as has been my experience, male nurses do tend to go up the career ladder quicker than their female counterparts. Before I started at my present job, I was working on a medical unit. There was a charge position available and I thought, hey, let's give it a shot since I'd been there a few years and felt I was ready for a new challenge. My interview went well, better than I expected, but they passed me over for a new grad who happened to be mature age and male. At the time, he had been working on the unit for only six months. Imagine how snubbed I felt when this guy, although older than me, was coming to me for advice on how to do his job. I still helped him out and gave him my advice because it's not in my nature to be a sore loser and after all, he was a good nurse, just inexperienced in leadership. But still, it really bites when that happens.
I wish you the best of luck though. :)