Georgetown Values Based Chair Wins Nursing Leadership Award

JUNE 11, 2014 – A nationally known Georgetown professor was recognized for her work to advance and lead the nursing profession.

Laura Anderko, PhD, RN, the Robert and Kathleen Scanlon Chair in Values Based Health Care at the School of Nursing & Health Studies, won a 2014 Nursing Excellence GEM Award at the awards ceremony last night.

“It was incredible to have my work in social justice and environmental health recognized as an important contribution to advancing the nursing profession,” says Anderko, who specializes in environmental health and justice.

Honoring Nurses

Each year, solicits nominations from nurses across the country for the GEM (Giving Excellence Meaning) Awards.  Anderko was chosen from among the five finalists in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia region for the advancing and leading the profession category.

That award, according to, honors an “RN who is well-known and respected as a visionary, innovative leader, and change agent, who moves the profession forward through work in patient care administration, education, or research, or strengthens it through other professional activities, endeavors, or contributions.”

Peggy Compton, PhD, RN, FAAN, associate dean of academic affairs, nominated Anderko.

‘Outstanding Example’

“Georgetown is known globally for its deep commitment to social justice, which is the foundation of her work,” says Compton.  “…She is an outstanding example of the value based approach to education that Georgetown is known for and continues to spearhead initiatives and conversations aimed at keeping social justice issues at the forefront of university actions.”

Last summer, Anderko was named a White House Champion of Change for her work on climate change and public health.  She has served on three advisory committees of the Environmental Protection Agency and is a member of a Regional Health Equity Council within the Office of Minority Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Nursing is well positioned to broaden society’s understanding about the connection between the environment and disease and to advocate for public policies that promote cleaner environments," says Anderko, who, along with the winners from the five other regions across the country, is now eligible for a national competition later this summer.

By Bill Cessato