Distinguished Faculty Alumni

100 Distinguished Nursing Alumni:  A-E     F-J     K-O     P-T     U-Z

Centennial Distinguished Faculty Alumni:   All 

Distinguished Faculty Alumni

Melissa Avery

Melissa Avery


Recognized for her leadership and advocacy of midwifery at local, national and international levels serving as the current President of the American College of Nurse-Midwives and for bringing distance education to the School of Nursing thereby increasing access to graduate level education.

Mary Benbenek

Mary Mescher Benbenek


Recognized for her transcultural work with East Africans and serving on Health Advisory Committees directing health policy on access to care, health care literacy and disaster preparedness. As a Family Nurse Practitioner, she has stimulated the learning of her students and modeled exceptional advanced practice nursing.

Judy Beniak

Judith Beniak


Recognized for being the first Chief of AIDS/STD with the Minnesota Department of Health and for establishing the Health Careers Center which provides advisory services for undergraduate students interested in health careers.

Linda Chlan

Linda Chlan

1992, 1997

Recognized for advancing the science of nursing through her ground-breaking research on adjunctive therapies to promote relaxation for patients in the ICU environment. Her work with undergraduate and graduate students has stimulated their thinking and motivated many to embark upon their own research careers

Maryann Chowen

Maryann Chowen


Recognized for her work in transforming health care on St. Paul’s East Side as Block Nurse and Healthcare Coordinator of the Payne-Phalen Living at Home/Block Nurse Program, having a profound impact on the seniors she serves and contributing to a national model for health care delivery that could serve as a template for today’s health care reform initiatives.

Linda Halcon

Linda Halçon

1983, 1986

Recognized for her leadership as the Public Health Director of Isanti County, Director of Boynton Health Service, and in disaster relief in Sudan and Iraq. With her holistic perspective, she has advanced the acceptance of complementary and alternative therapies in nursing and health care, extended the use of her Health Realization model to help refugees, and promoted the use of essential oils as a fundamental treatment for disease.

Kathleen Krichbaum

Kathleen E. Krichbaum

1979, 1991

Recognized for her influence on nursing education and healthcare by developing the ACHIEVES and CET models for program evaluation, for her research on care delivery models with nursing home residents and for ground-breaking work on the phenomenon of complexity compression.

Ruth Lindquist

Ruth Lindquist

1976, 1979

Recognized for her research on risks of and responses to cardiovascular and cerebro-vascular disease, for incorporating complementary therapies into the critical care environments and for establishing a local, yet influential Women’s Only Cardiac Support Group and for being an extraordinary mentor to doctoral students.

Carol O'Boyle

Carol O’Boyle

1992, 1998

Recognized for her contributions to the field of infection control and her collaboration with international partners to establish infection control education and practice in emerging regions of the world. Her research tool has been translated into multiple languages for use throughout the world.

Linda Olson-Keller

Linda Olson Keller

1980, 2008

Recognized for her advocacy of nursing in general and public health nursing in particular, as well as social justice for all. Her invention of the Public Health Nursing Wheel has resulted in an international framework for guiding nursing practice, education and management.

Peg Plumbo

Margaret Plumbo


Recognized for helping to establish nurse practitioners in women’s health care in Minnesota, for playing a vital role in the School’s achieving national prominence in nurse-midwifery, and for advancing the role of nursing in this country and several nations of the former Soviet Republic.

Cheryl Robertson

Cheryl Robertson

1988, 2000

Recognized for directing the international programs at the Center for Victims of Torture, and developing innovative community-based programs for refugees and torture survivors, raising the visibility of refugee war trauma, torture and the role of public health nursing.

Mary Rowan

Mary M. Rowan

1989, 1992

Recognized for her vision and leadership in developing the successful Post-Baccalaureate Certificate and Master’s of Nursing degree programs. A highly regarded mentor, she has touched the lives – and helped the careers – of hundreds of nurses and nursing students.

Diane Treat-Jacobson

Diane Treat-Jacobson


Recognized for her commitment to early detection and non-invasive treatment of peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and her international leadership in the field of vascular nursing. As a past President of the Society for Vascular Nursing, she has improved the care, enhanced the education and generated new knowledge for patients experiencing these challenging conditions.

100 Distinguished Nursing Alumni:  A-E     F-J     K-O     P-T     U-Z

Centennial Distinguished Faculty Alumni:   All