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University of Iowa News Release

April 29, 2004

Nursing Dean Dreher Elected To AACN Board Of Directors

Melanie Dreher, Ph.D., the Kelting Dean of the University of Iowa College of Nursing, has been elected to a two year-term on the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Board of Directors.

As a board member, Dreher will act as liaison to the AACN Implementation Task Force for the Clinical Nurse Leader project. AACN, in collaboration with a broad array of leaders from the practice environment, is calling for the creation of a new nursing role - the Clinical Nurse Leader - to better meet client care needs within the health care delivery system. The AACN Implementation Task Force is charged with overseeing pilot projects in practice and education related to this new role.

"I am honored to represent the College of Nursing and the people of Iowa on this important national board. It is an opportunity for academic nursing in Iowa to, once again, serve a leadership role in advancing the nursing profession with innovative models in nursing education," Dreher said.

Dreher's election to the board is in recognition of her continued leadership as a visionary for professional nursing education. She has been dean of the UI College of Nursing since 1997, a post she assumed after serving as dean at the University of Massachusetts School of Nursing from 1988-97 and dean of the University of Miami School of Nursing from 1984-88. She was elected to the American Academy of Nursing in 1988.

Among other leadership activities, Dreher was president of Sigma Theta Tau International, the international nursing honor society, and president of the Council on Nursing and Anthropology. She has held appointments in departments of public health, anthropology and psychiatry, and most recently she was visiting professor at the University of West Indies Faculty of Medical Sciences.

Dreher's honors include the May A. Brunson Award for outstanding achievement for the advancement of university women; The Chancellor's Medal from the University of Massachusetts; a citation from the U.S. Ambassador to Jamaica for her contribution to the welfare of Jamaica, where much of her public health research has taken place; and most recently, a Sigma Theta Tau award in her name for deans who have made the greatest contribution to Sigma Theta Tau International. In 1999, Dreher was selected by the director of the National Institutes of Health to serve as a charter member of the Council of Public Representatives. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Wellmark Health Plan of Iowa.

Graduating magna cum laude from the Long Island University School of Nursing, Dreher also holds a doctorate in anthropology from Teachers College and Columbia University where she completed her dissertation with distinction.

Other AACN members elected to serve in the member-at-large capacity on the board of directors include Lea Acord, dean of Marquette University College of Nursing, and Roberta Olson, dean of South Dakota State University College of Nursing.

They are joined on the board by Treasurer C. Fay Raines, dean of the University of Alabama in Huntsville College of Nursing; Eileen Breslin, dean of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst School of Nursing; Jane Kirschling, dean of the University of Southern Maine College of Nursing and Health Professions; and Terry Misener of the University of Portland School of Nursing.

Jean E. Bartels, professor and chair of the School of Nursing at Georgia Southern University, was elected to serve a two-year term as president of AACN.

The American Association of Colleges of Nursing is the national voice for university and four-year-college education programs in nursing. Representing more than 575 member schools of nursing at public and private institutions nationwide, AACN's educational, research, governmental advocacy, data collection, publications and other programs work to: establish quality standards for bachelor's- and graduate-degree nursing education; assist deans and directors to implement those standards; influence the nursing profession to improve health care; and promote public support of baccalaureate and graduate nursing education, research, and practice.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa College of Nursing, 101 Nursing Building, Iowa City, Iowa 52242

MEDIA CONTACT: bonnie-mcintosh@uiowa.edu, 319-335-7003, mailto:bonnie-mcintosh@uiowa.edu.