For the last six years, the University of Wyoming Nurse Practitioner Program has presented an annual award to a singular leader in advanced practice nursing. But an important historical event in nurse practitioner history occurred on January 1, 2013 that encouraged the NP program to recognize two special leaders in Wyoming's advanced practice nursing community for 2013: Maria Kidner and Marsha Siegel. In addition to being leaders in the state, both Kidner and Siegel were recognized leaders in different respected organizations: Kidner in the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and Siegel in the American College of Nurse Practitioners. In 2012 these two American organizations decided to come together to work as a unified front on behalf of the nation's nurse practitioners. The following two 2013 UW NP awards for Siegel and Kidner are symbolic of the unifying national event.
Maria Kidner was born in Hawaii, “grew up” in South Dakota, and has lived in Cheyenne for many years. She received her Master’s degree from the University of Wyoming’s Family Nurse Practitioner Program in 2001. She then completed her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree at the Rocky Mountain University of Healthcare Professions in 2008, becoming one of the first DNP-prepared FNPs in Wyoming. Since becoming a nurse practitioner, Dr. Kidner has enjoyed an illustrious career practicing rural and frontier health care in the Family Practice Clinic and Emergency Room in Basin, WY and working in both orthopedic and cardiology clinics in Cheyenne. For the last seven years she has worked in a cardiology clinic with the Cheyenne Regional Physicians Group and has become respected for both her clinical knowledge and compassionate care.
In addition to her work providing direct patient care, Maria has an accomplished service career, which includes leading medical missions to Guyana, South America and developing and delivering many educational programs. Dr. Kidner has also been very involved with professional organizations around the state and the nation, including the Wyoming Nurses Association, Sigma Theta Tau, March of Dimes, and the Cheyenne Community Clinic. She has served for several years as Wyoming’s representative to the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (the AANP) and has worked to ensure that Wyoming’s nurse practitioners are able to practice at their highest level of education. Kidner has received numerous honors and award including UW’s "US West Excellence in Education Award", WNA leadership awards, and one of the highest honors an NP can receive: induction as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
Marsha Siegel has lived in Cheyenne for many years. She received her Master’s degree from the University of Wyoming's Family Nurse Practitioner Program in 1989 and her Doctorate in Education from the University of Sarasota in 2004. During her 24-year career as a nurse practitioner, Marsha has worked in a variety of patient care roles, including family planning and private practice. She currently is the Acting Medical Director for the Compensation and Pension Program at the Cheyenne VA and serves as a volunteer provider for Crossroads Clinic, a homeless clinic in Cheyenne. Throughout her career, Siegel has been committed to professional service - both in Wyoming and across the nation, including the Wyoming Council for Advanced Practice Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau, the Wyoming Nurses Association, the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, and the American College of Nurse Practitioners (where she served as the president elect, president, and immediate past president from 2009-2011). Dr. Siegel has received many awards and honors, including induction into the Nurse Practitioner Hall of Fame in 2010 and recognition as one of the seven nurse practitioners who changed the professional forever in 2011.
"Dr. Siegel’s contributions to advanced practice nursing and to health care are enormous," says DNP Coordinator Ann Marie Hart. "Since 1990, Marsha has worked tirelessly to educate Wyoming’s legislature and lobby for advanced practice nursing... Largely because of Marsha’s work, NPs in Wyoming are able to practice to their full scope of practice – a privilege that is sadly not enjoyed by others in the nation."