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Term Chairs for Eight Penn Nursing Faculty
September 29, 2009, Volume 56, No. 05

As the Penn Nursing “Where Science Leads” Campaign closes, Dr. Afaf I. Meleis, Margaret Bond Simon Dean of Nursing, has announced one of the “fruits of our labors” with the appointments of eight faculty members to term chairs, effective July 1, 2009. Raising funds for endowed and term faculty support was one of the four priorities of the School’s $75 million campaign. “The endowment of academic chairs, the work of the stellar faculty holding these chairs, and the promise of the students they educate all lead to excellence in nursing science and improved quality of care for all,” said Dean Meleis.


Dr. Christopher Lance Coleman, assistant professor of nursing, has been appointed to the Term Assistant Professor in Multi-Cultural Diversity as an acknowledgement of his devotion to advancing knowledge of the determinants of health among racial and ethnic minorities, marginalized, vulnerable, and underserved populations across the life span. Dr. Coleman is best known for his research focusing on health compromising sexual behaviors with HIV seropositive African American men middle-aged and older who have sex with men exclusively, or with both men and women. He also explores health compromising sexual behaviors of incarcerated African American men. In addition to his focus on health compromising sexual behaviors, Dr. Coleman is conducting investigations about strategies used by HIV seropositive individuals to manage HIV related symptoms and the physical sequale associated with HAART. He completed a K01 award from the National Institutes of Health to study HIV related risk behaviors in African American men middle-aged and older in 2004, and his book on the study findings, Dangerous Intimacy:  Ten African American Men with HIV, has just been published. Dr. Coleman became a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing in 2007. He holds a secondary faculty appointment in the department of psychiatry in the School of Medicine.




Dr. Nancy P. Hanrahan, assistant professor of nursing, has been appointed as the Dr. Lenore H. Kurlowicz Memorial Term Assistant Professor in Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing. The Chair was founded earlier this year by a gift from the Kurlowicz Family in memory of Dr. Lenore H. Kurlowicz, a former faculty member in the School of Nursing. Dr. Kurlowicz, associate professor of gero-psychiatric nursing, died in 2007 following a long illness. Since beginning her appointment to the Standing Faculty in 2004, Dr. Hanrahan has been an integral member of a multidisciplinary research team focusing on health workforce and outcomes research. She developed an independent program of research, designed to investigate individual and organizational-level factors that promote improved function and recovery among people with serious mental illness. Dr. Hanrahan is a national leader in psychiatric mental health nursing and known for her work in system-level mental health services research. She teaches graduate level courses on the pathogenesis of mental disorders and psychopharmacology using a discovery-based learning method. Her teaching is informed by her extensive clinical and administrative experience providing mental health care to individuals with serious psychological problems. She is a content expert in the assessment and application of brain and behavior neuroscience and psychopharmacology. In 2006, Dr. Hanrahan received the School of Nursing Teacher of the Year Award. In addition, with her undergraduate mentee, Dr. Hanrahan received the first Annual Undergraduate Mentored Research Award.



Dr. Sarah Hope Kagan, professor of gerontological nursing-clinician educator, has been appointed as the Lucy Walker Honorary Term Professor. The Lucy Walker Term Chair was founded in 2009 to support the scholarship of honors students. The mission of the Honors Program is to provide opportunities for intellectual development, independent research and scholarship for those undergraduate nursing students who thrive on intellectual challenges and possess a thirst for acquiring and generating new knowledge. In her role as director of the Undergraduate Honors Program, Dr. Kagan regularly teaches two undergraduate honors courses, “Sweet Little Old Ladies and Sandwiched Daughters” and “Aging, Beauty, and Sexuality.” In addition to courses taught in the Honors Program, Dr. Kagan teaches students across the baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral programs in the School of Nursing as well as lectures and offers preceptorships in the School of Medicine. She is the director of the Penn-United Kingdom Study Abroad Programs in the School of Nursing. She also directs the advanced qualitative methods course in the PhD program. Dr. Kagan’s inspiring teaching has been recognized through the receipt of the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching (in 1998), the School of Nursing Teaching Award (in 2001), the Barbara Lowry Doctoral Student Organization Faculty Award (in 2004), and by her designation as a Master Teacher by the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education. Dr. Kagan’s clinical appointment is as clinical nurse specialist in the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, where she offers advanced nursing consultation to patients, their families, nurses, and physicians on matters of symptom management, psychosocial oncology, geriatric oncology, and interdisciplinary team work. Her second book—published by Penn Press in 2009—is entitled Cancer in the Lives of Older Americans: Blessings and Battles.



Dr. Terri H. Lipman, professor of nursing of children, has been appointed as the Miriam Stirl Endowed Term Professor in Nutrition. The Stirl Chair is funded by a bequest from Miriam Stirl, HUP ’20, Ed ’23, who developed an interest in nutrition during her career in nursing. The University received this gift for the study and teaching of nutrition after her death in 1989. Dr. Lipman’s program of research focuses on the nutritional quality of foods purchased by those in diverse populations experiencing food insecurity and material hardship. Her research is inspired by her clinical practice at CHOP with children who have two health-compromising conditions:  diabetes and growth disorders. Management of these conditions addresses two of the most pressing health issues facing children today. The reduction of health disparities in children is a core principle of Dr. Lipman’s work. She is praised by CHOP for her consistent and successful efforts to involve more nurses in clinical research including evidence-based guidelines, poster presentations and publications. Her contributions to the education of nursing students has been recognized through the 2002 Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching.




Dr. William F. McCool, associate professor of nurse midwifery, has been appointed to the Term Associate Professor in Women’s Health. Dr. McCool’s research involves steps toward answering the question of why some pregnant women experience intense, but uncomplicated births, while others suffer from a variety of complications and less desirable outcomes through the exploration of biobehavioral factors that influence women’s labor and delivery experiences. Currently, he is investigating whether or not a pregnant woman’s level of stress and anxiety is related to the outcome of her labor and delivery experience. Practicing full-scope midwifery care through his affiliation with the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP), Dr. McCool is the first midwife to have practiced at the Helen O. Dickens Center for Women’s Health at HUP. He regularly works with students and other practitioners to offer care to pregnant women of all ages, adolescents in need of family planning, and post-menopausal women with gynecological health care needs. Dr. McCool teaches on the undergraduate and graduate levels including the final integrative clinical course to midwifery students where they must integrate all they have learned before and practice as midwives prior to graduation. He is a 2002 recipient of the W. Newton Long Fund Committee award from the ACNM Foundation for promotion of nurse-midwifery research and currently serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health.



Dr. Ann L. O’Sullivan, professor of primary care nursing, has been appointed as the Dr. Hildagarde Reynolds Endowed Term Professor. The Dr. Hildagarde Reynolds Endowed Term Chair was founded earlier this year by a gift from Mr. Ralph F. Reynolds in memory of his mother Dr. Hildagarde Reynolds. During her career, Dr. Reynolds was an active member of the State of Alabama Board of Nursing and spearheaded many efforts to eliminate rigid requirements for nursing education and practice to assure the independence of the Board of Nursing while protecting the public. Similarly, Dr. O’Sullivan is actively engaged in national and local leadership on behalf of the nursing profession. Through her ongoing work with the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing and National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties, Dr. O’Sullivan helps to shape policies for advanced practice nursing. She has just been reappointed as the chairperson of the Advanced Practice (APRN) Committee by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. This year, Dr. O’Sullivan was awarded the Pennsylvania State Advocate Award from the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. She  is a nationally known and an internationally consulted expert on working with teen mothers, particularly those under 17 years of age. The objective of her work is to enhance adolescent mothers’ capacities to care for themselves and their children, return to school, and balance the roles of student and mother. Her work was recognized with the receipt of the 1998 American Nurses Association Honorary Practice Award. Dr. O’Sullivan’s 30 years of experience as a practicing Pediatric Nurse Practitioner have helped her develop a Primary Care Program that combines academic skill and research with real life application. She was recognized by the University as a distinguished teacher through her selection as a Lindback Awardee in 2000.



Dr. Kathy Culpepper Richards, professor of health promotion in gerontology, has been appointed as the Ralston House Endowed Term Professor in Gerontological Nursing. The Ralston House Endowed Term Chair was founded in 1995 by a gift from The Ralston House to support Gerontological Nursing. Dr. Richards is well known as a researcher in the gerontological nursing community for her contributions to the evidence through which we understand various aspects of sleep in older adults. Her primary interests are in sleep, cognition, and behavior which are areas of research contributing in measurable ways to the health and well being of large numbers of older people. More specifically, her scholarship focuses on sleep in older adults with dementia and the science of tailoring biobehavioral interventions to improve sleep in older adults. In her role as director of the Polisher Research Institute, Dr. Richards enhances interdisciplinary and interagency collaborations for gerontology research and practice with the School of Nursing and influences patient care directly through the data generated via research projects developed and executed at the Institute. Her recognition in the discipline is evidenced by her selection for Fellowship in the American Academy of Sleep Medicine in 2002 (one of very few nurses to have achieved this distinction); Fellowship in the American Academy of Nursing in 2005; membership in national and international panels; presentations at key meetings; and leadership in professional organizations. Dr. Richards is sought out by doctoral students and has been a member and/or chair of multiple dissertation committees.



Dr. Therese Richmond, associate professor of nursing, has been appointed as the Andrea B. Laporte Endowed Term Associate Professor. The Chair was founded earlier this year by a gift from Mrs. Andrea Laporte to recognize and provide support to faculty research. Mrs. Laporte is an alumna of the School and member of the School’s Board of Overseers. Since beginning her appointment to the Standing Faculty in 1997, Dr. Richmond has provided leadership in the science of injury research. She is an internationally renowned researcher in trauma, neuroscience, and critical care nursing. Her program of research examines human responses to and recovery trajectories following traumatic injury. She conducts studies focused on identifying factors to facilitate or impede optimal recovery, and mentors students to improve the clinical management of acutely ill and injured patients. Dr. Richmond is the co-founder and Research Director of the Firearm Injury Center, Division of Traumatology and Surgical Critical Care in the University of Pennsylvania Health System, where she leads interdisciplinary teams to reduce firearm violence and fulfill the Center’s mission “to create safer communities through the systematic reduction of injury and its repercussions to the individual, family and society.” She holds a secondary appointment as associate professor of nursing in surgery in the School of Medicine. Dr. Richmond won the University’s Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching in 2008, the  Doctoral Student Organization’s Barbara Lowery Award for Doctoral Student Teaching and Mentoring also in 2008, and the School of Nursing’s Faculty Teaching Award for excellence in teaching in 2004. She also won the School’s Outstanding Alumni Award in 2007.

Almanac - September 29, 2009, Volume 56, No. 05