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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Vicki Ann Moss, DNSc, MS, BSN, RN (University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh)
Description: This book describes the lives of 12 nurse leaders and the impact they each had on contemporary nursing practice. The leaders come from many domains, academics, acute care, research, public policy, and others. They all have a diversity of accomplishments, and are recognized internationally.
Purpose: The purpose is to show how ordinary people can accomplish extraordinary outcomes, and is meant to be an inspiration to future nurse leaders as they learn from the lessons of the past. This book represents a "passing of the leadership torch."
Audience: The conversational style makes the book easy to read and relevant to all practicing as well as retired nurses.
Features: Each of the 12 chapters chronicles the life of one of the nurse leaders: Loretta C. Ford, Shirley Sears Chater, Joyce C. Clifford, Luther Christman, Vernice D. Ferguson, Ada Sue Hinshaw, Faye Glenn Abdellah, Sue Karen Donaldson, Margretta "Gretta" Madden Styles, Rheba de Tornyay, Claire Fagin, and Linda H. Aiken. The early years and early influences are woven into the professional roles and accomplishments of each elite leader. Each chapter is personalized with family and professional pictures. Appendix A summarizes the leadership challenges faced by each nurse leader and a biographical summary of each is provided in Appendix B.
Assessment: This is a beautifully written book that tells the stories of each nurse leader. It humanizes them as they speak from the heart about their lives and their love and dedication to the betterment of professional nursing. The authors state that this book "only scratched the surface" of nurse leaders deserving recognition; therefore, they plan to compile future volumes so that present and future nurses can learn the lessons of history, "and be more efficient players at the healthcare table."