Mary F. Heinen

Outstanding Achievement Award Recipient

College of Education and Human Development, April 11, 2003

Sister Mary F. Heinen graduated from the University in 1975 with a Ph.D. in education and began her career of commitment to social justice, nursing education, and health care, especially to the poor and uninsured. She established the first associate degree nursing program in the Twin Cities at St. Mary’s College. She also established the nursing degree program at North Dakota State University, eventually known as the Tri-College University Consortium when Concordia College and Moorhead University joined the program. In June of 1977, she was appointed by Governor Rudy Perpich to serve on the Minnesota Board of Nursing, the state agency responsible for public protection through licensing, standard setting, disciplinary functions, and approving educational programs that prepare nurses for licensure. She was the president of the Board for two years, and served as its representative on the Health Services Occupations Advisory Council for the Minnesota Department of Health as well. Her guidance in health care systems was then applied to her religious community when she designed and executed a national health audit, which is still used in health care systems and higher education, for Carondelet Health System. Further, she has helped develop St. Mary’s Clinics; they are staffed primarily by volunteer doctors and nurses, and aim to serve the disenfranchised in locations close to their homes. She has demonstrated her effective leadership skills on the boards of the College of St. Catherine, the St. Thomas Seminary and Health East, Inc., and is a sought-after board member and consultant.

Biographies are as-of time of award presentation.