Nursing Professor of Nursing Debra Wollaber is one of 16 Middle Tennessee nurses honored recently as 2012 Nurse of the Year by the March of Dimes regional chapter. Wollaber received the award for education to entry level nurses. Each year the March of Dimes recognizes outstanding nurses in a number of areas within clinical nursing, administrative nursing, research nursing and nursing education. Nurse educators are nominated for their efforts towards the education of future nursing professionals either at the entry level or at the graduate level.
“We are so happy for Debra to be recognized in this way,” said Martha Buckner, associate dean of nursing in the Gordon E. Inman College of Health Sciences & Nursing. “Many of us at Belmont have been impacted by her leadership and mentorship.”
Wollaber earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Hartwick College in Oneonta, N.Y., master’s in parent-child nursing from Russell Sage College in Troy, N.Y. and a Ph.D. in child and family studies from Syracuse University. She began teaching at Belmont in 1988 and served as dean of the School of Nursing beginning in 1997 and the College of Health Sciences and Nursing from 1999-2007. She returned to the classroom in 2007 after helping coordinate the construction of the Gordon E. Inman Center in 2006.
Also honored were Nursing Professor Leslie Higgins, as a finalist for graduate nursing education, and two Belmont students, Kelsey Maguire and Mary Catherine Creel Peoples, as finalists for student nurse of the year.