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Alumni & Friends - Alumni Award for Distinguished Achievement

UI Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Awards

Dr. Joanne Rains Warner received the Distinguished Alumni Award for Achievement in 2014. Dr. Warner grew up in the Midwest having lived in Indiana, Iowa and South Dakota. She received her BA Cum laude in Nursing from Augustana College, Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1972 and her masters in nursing with a specialty in medical-surgical nursing from the University of Iowa College of Nursing in 1976. She continued her nursing education at Indiana University School of Nursing, where she earned her PhD in 1990 in Health Policy and Health of the Community. Dr. Warner is currently Professor and Dean of the University of Portland School of Nursing, Portland Oregon. Dr. Warner is most deserving of this award based on her exemplary achievement as a nurse leader and her commitment to nursing education to ensure the development of highly educated and competent clinicians. She has also been very helpful to the Department of Nursing and the College of Nursing in the development of the Dedicated Education Unit (DEU) at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. 


Dr. Mary Blegen received the Distinguished Alumni Award for Alumni Achievement June 2016 through the University of Iowa Alumni Association. Dr. Blegen grew up in South Dakota first on a farm and then in the town of Mobridge. She received her baccalaureate degree in nursing from Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1966. She came to Iowa City for graduate school (MA in Nursing) and received her master’s in nursing in 1975 and a PhD in Sociology in 1987—both from the University of Iowa. In the time between her degrees, Dr. Blegen was employed as an Instructor and Assistant Professor with the University of Iowa College of Nursing. After earning her PhD degree from the University of Iowa, Dr. Blegen returned to her teaching role at the College of Nursing. During her 12-year tenure, she held the positions of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Chair, Theory & Health Promotion Area and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Presently, Dr. Blegen is Professor Emerita; Community Health Systems Department, at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Nursing and also Adjunct Professor at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, School of Nursing, Denver, Colorado. 


Ms. Margaret (Peg) Stessman (BSN ′84, MBA ′12) received the Distinguished Alumni Award for Alumni Achievement June 2017 through the University of Iowa Alumni Association. She was nominated by the Tippie College of Business with a support letter from the College of Nursing.