UW News

January 25, 2007

Woods to hold Nursing’s Reid Endowed Deanship

By Elise Perachio Daniel
School of Nursing

Robert G. and Jean A. Reid, UW alumni and former owners of Reid Sand & Gravel, have made a $3.5 million donation to the UW School of Nursing to establish the school’s first endowed deanship: the Robert G. and Jean A. Reid Endowed Deanship in Nursing. On Jan. 22, Dr. Nancy Fugate Woods, dean of the UW School of Nursing since 1998, will become the first recipient of the deanship.

The Reid Endowed Deanship in Nursing is the second endowed deanship at UW-Seattle — the School of Engineering established a $4 million deanship in 2005 — and the third endowed nursing deanship in the country; the others are at the University of Pennsylvania and Villanova University. Longtime UW benefactors and honorary co-chairs of the School of Nursing’s fund-raising campaign, the Reids made this major gift to the School of Nursing as a tribute to the leadership of Dean Woods, as well as to the excellent nursing care each of them has experienced personally.

Their gift is also a response to the looming nursing faculty shortage, which will make competition for top-flight nursing deans even tighter. According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), 62.5 percent of deans and directors who are members of AACN are over the age of 55 and are nearing retirement eligibility. Only 3.1 percent of nursing school deans and directors are under the age of 45.

The Reids’ financial support will give the UW School of Nursing a strategic advantage in recruiting and retaining high-caliber nursing leaders who can keep the school’s curriculum cutting-edge, its graduates highly sought-after, and its ranking the highest in the country.

“We were inspired by Nancy’s innovative leadership and her passion for the field of nursing and the UW School of Nursing,” said Jean Reid. “She has shown us the level of greatness that can be achieved when the right leader is matched with the right institution. Now we want to ensure that both she and future deans of her caliber are well supported financially, so that they can take the school to even greater heights—including its contributions to solving global health crises.”

For Woods, receiving this endowed deanship is the culmination of a lifetime of leadership in the field of nursing. At the UW School of Nursing, she has served as chair of the Department of Family and Child Nursing and associate dean for research. Some of her most noteworthy achievements include: at Duke University, helping conduct the first prevalence study of premenstrual symptoms in American women, and at UW, helping establish the Center for Women’s Health Research in 1989 to study women’s health across the life span.

Woods has served as president of the American Academy of Nursing and the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research. She was also a member of the National Advisory Council on Nursing Research for the National Institute of Nursing Research and was elected to the Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences. Her education in nursing began at Wisconsin State University–Eau Claire, where she received a bachelor’s degree in nursing in 1968. She completed her master of nursing degree at the University of Washington in 1969 and received her Ph.D. in epidemiology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1978. Woods also received honorary doctorates from the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Haifa in Israel and Chiang Mai University in Thailand.

For more information about the Robert G. and Jean A. Reid Endowed Deanship in Nursing, please contact Lia Unrau, communications director, unrau@u.washington.edu, or Elise Daniel, assistant communications director, eperdan@u.washington.edu, at the UW School of Nursing, 206-221-2456.