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March 18, 2011

Loretta Ford named to National Women’s Hall of Fame

Loretta Ford

Loretta Ford, founding dean of the School of Nursing, will be one of 11 American women inducted to the National Women’s Hall of Fame this fall. The induction ceremony will take place Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 in Seneca Falls, the birthplace of the American Women’s Rights Movement.

Ford is an internationally renowned nurse leader who transformed the nursing profession and changed the delivery of health care by cofounding the nurse practitioner model at the University of Colorado in 1965 with Henry Silver, a pediatrician. Today there are more than 140,000 nurse practitioners in the United States.

In 1972, Ford became the first dean of the School of Nursing, where she implemented the unification model of practice, education, and research. During her tenure, the educational mission of the school also expanded beyond the bachelor’s and master’s degree programs to provide both doctoral and postdoctoral training. She retired in 1985 but continues to consult and lecture on the historical development of the role of nurse practitioners and on issues related to the advancement of nursing practice and health care policy.

The national Women’s Hall of Fame is the nation’s oldest membership organization recognizing the achievements of great American women. Inductees are selected every two years based on their lasting contributions to society through the arts, athletics, business, education, government, humanities, philanthropy, and science. Founded in 1969, the hall inducted 236 women since its inception. This year’s inductees join a notable group, including Susan B. Anthony, Dorothy Haight, Maya Lin, Sandra Day O’Connor and Rosa Parks.

For more information on this year’s inductees, visit

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