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Reception Recognizes Donna Diers
Donna Diers, PhD, RN, FAAN
Donna Diers started her life in Sheridan, Wyoming, and rose to become one of a select group of nurses honored as a "Living Legend" for their influence on nursing and health care. Diers truly has had a tremendous impact on nursing practice, education, research, and national and international health policy. Margaret Grey, current dean at Yale School of Nursing, has written: "Donna Diers has served as the 'voice of nursing' for over 40 years. She has taught us about ourselves, our profession, and our society. Her words forever changed the direction of nursing science and convinced us that primary care is nursing." Diers spent her career at Yale School of Nursing, starting as a lecturer in psychiatric mental health nursing and ultimately serving as the Dean for 13 years.
An early advocate of clinical nursing research, she wrote the first textbook on this topic in 1979. This textbook, Research in Nursing Practice, strongly grounded nursing research in clinical practice, very much in line with the current focus in health-related research on translation of research into practice. She has published in virtually all of the major nursing journals. For eight years she served as editor of Image: Journal of Nursing Scholarship, a key scholarship and research journal in nursing. During her career, Diers has received some of the most prestigious awards and honors in nursing, including: Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing; member in the Institute of Medicine - the health arm of the National Academy of Sciences; the Jessie M. Scott Award from the American Nurses Association - which honors nurses who bring together nursing education practice and research; and a "Living Legend" by the American Academy of Nursing - the Academy’s highest honor.
Diers is currently the Annie W. Goodrich Professor Emeritus and Lecturer in Nursing at the Yale School of Nursing; and Senior Clinical Coordinator, Decision Support, Yale-New Haven Health System. In addition, she holds Adjunct Professor appointments at the University of Technology, Sydney, Australia, and the University of Sydney. She continues to consult and to write articles and books as she tirelessly works to improve nursing in the United States and beyond. Diers has never been satisfied with discovering a new way to help improve patient care until she has shared her new found knowledge with other caregivers around the world.