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Nurse midwifery leader 2010 recipient of U. College of Nursing Distinguished Alumni Award

(Salt Lake City, Utah) Deanne Williams, RN, CNM, MS, FACNM has focused her 30-year career on improving the content and quality of women's health care with a particular focus on expanding access to nurse-midwifery care. In recognition of her many contributions to the health and well-being of others, and to the nursing community, Williams has been selected as the 2010 Distinguished Alumni of the University of Utah College of Nursing. She will be recognized for the honor during the College's convocation ceremony Thursday, May 6 at 5:00 p.m. at Kingsbury Hall on the University of Utah campus.

Presented annually to a College of Nursing graduate who has attained the highest level of professional accomplishments, the Distinguished Alumni Award is acknowledgment of one's work to advance the profession through practice, research, education, or administration. "Deanne's knowledge, commitment and ability to influence policy makers has had a lasting impact in Utah, Washington, D.C. and throughout the world," said Ben Becker, RN, MSN, OCN, president of the College's Alumni Advisory Board, which selected Williams from the group of nominees. "With her long and accomplished career in midwifery and public policy, she is an inspiration to faculty, staff, students, and alumni of the College of Nursing."

Initially drawn to nurse midwifery because she identified a need to improve access to care and the quality of the birth experience for women and their families, Williams says she selected the U. College of Nursing because of the outstanding national reputation of its midwifery program. She earned a master of science degree from the Parent Child, Nurse-Midwifery Program in 1980. Upon graduating, she was the perinatal co-coordinator and later clinical director of Utah's first multi-disciplinary adolescent pregnancy program. In 1984 Williams initiated, as co-director, one of Salt Lake City's first full scope nurse-midwifery practices in a private clinic. In 1993, she went to work for the American College of Nurse-Midwives in Washington, D.C., and was the first nurse-midwife to hold the position of executive director for the organization. Now back in Utah, Williams is currently the advanced practice clinical coordinator at Intermountain Healthcare. "I never did take the easy jobs," she says of her career that has spanned clinical care, public policy, leadership and administration. "But in every job I have been able to improve the lives of women and their families."


Contact: Katie Schrier
University of Utah Health Sciences

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