What is your current title and how long have you been with Oto?
I have been with the Department of Otolaryngology at Washington University collectively for 36 years, minus a one-and-a-half year hiatus during which I remained in Otolaryngology in South Texas.
I have been in nursing for 46 years after finishing an RN program at Missouri Baptist Nursing School. I began my nursing career at Cardinal Glennon in the neonatal unit then transitioned to a stepdown infant floor and then moved to the Poison Center. Following my time at Cardinal Glennon, I worked at Labor Health Institute in internal medicine where I was introduced to outpatient allergy.
In 1987, I joined the Department of Otolaryngology to help develop and manage the allergy division which was active until 2016 when I left for Texas. On returning to St. Louis, I returned to my oto family and now see general ENT patients in our outpatient clinics. During my tenure here I went back to school part-time and completed bachelors and masters degrees and finally my Nurse Practitioner certification.
What do you like most about your work here?
What I enjoy most about my role here is my interaction with patients and colleagues. Many patients ask why I did not go to medical school and my response is that I love nursing and love being able to practice autonomously.
What spare time activity brings you the most joy?
In my spare time, I love being with family. I am blessed with an amazing husband, four children, and 10 grandchildren. Philip and I will celebrate our 7th anniversary this year. We enjoy golf, kayaking, cycling, hiking and traveling. To my surprise, we bought a camper a few years ago and really enjoy getting off the grid and out into nature.
What would most surprise your colleagues to learn about you?
Those that don’t know me are surprised to learn that Philip grew up on the Island of Haiti. Haiti was his boyhood home from age four to 14. His parents founded Project Help in Haiti with two main campuses at Borel and Pierre Payen. These mission fields remain active to this day. Philip has continued to organize and lead teams to visit Haiti until these last few volatile COVID years. I have had the opportunity to visit these towns and provide ENT care.
What is your favorite indulgence?
I enjoy writing poetry and have had the honor of being published in several publications. My newest hobby is learning to play the guitar.
My top-of-the-bucket-list entry would be travel to Australia and New Zealand.