College of Nursing Dean Emeritus Dr. Carolyn Williams Among Five Nurses Designated as Living Legends, American Academy of Nursing's Highest Honor

Posted: August 15, 2017

Carolyn Williams, PhD, RN, FAAN, dean emeritus of the UK College of Nursing and former president of the American Academy of Nursing, was one of five nurse leaders to receive the Academy's designation of Living Legend, the organization's highest honor, at a special ceremony during the policy conference in Washington, D.C. on October 5, 2017. 

"I am delighted to designate these five eminently deserving individuals as Academy Living Legends for the many excellent contributions they have made to the nursing profession and health care," said Academy President Bobbie Berkowitz, PhD, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN. "With interests ranging from women's health and community-based nursing to oncology, infectious diseases and quality and safety education, each of them embodies leadership and a steadfast commitment to improving the health of people."

The Academy recognizes a small number of Fellows as Living Legends each year. To be eligible, the Living Legend must have been an Academy Fellow for at least 15 years and have demonstrated extraordinary, sustained contributions to nursing and health care. The following nurses will be honored as 2017 Living Legends in recognition of the multiple contributions they have made to nursing that continue to reverberate throughout the health services field today.

Dr. Williams has had a profound impact on public health epidemiology and nursing education. Her groundbreaking work advocates for population-focused research and care to be cornerstones of community health. Dr. Williams was actively involved in efforts that led to the creation of the National Institute for Nursing Research. She championed the growth of primary care nurse practitioners and the evolution of the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). As Dean of the University of Kentucky College of Nursing (1984-2006), she opened the nation’s first DNP program. As president of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (2000-02) she pressed for development of the DNP nationally.

The College of Nursing will hold a celebration for her in the month of November, details to be announced. 

View photos from the event here. Read more on Dr. Williams here.

For more information on Living Legends, click here.