American Academy of Nursing Designates Dr. Patricia Benner a "Living Legend"

American Academy of Nursing Announces
2011 Living Legends

Five distinguished nurse leaders will be celebrated during the
Annual Conference and Meeting on October 13, 2011

Washington, DC (August 25, 2011) – The American Academy of Nursing is proud to honor five nurse leaders as Living Legends for their extraordinary accomplishments and life-time achievements. Designation as a Living Legend represents the Academy’s highest recognition.

From UCSF, the designated Living Legend is Dr. Patricia Benner (faculty profile), the announcement identifies her as follows:

  • Patricia Benner, PhD, RN, FAAN, Professor Emerita in the Department of
        Social and Behavioral Sciences at the University of California, San Francisco and
        former Senior Scholar at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of teaching

Since the initiation of the award in 1994, the Academy has honored 82 Living Legends as a way to commemorate distinguished careers that have impacted health care through notable contributions to nursing practice, research, and education.

A recognition ceremony is scheduled for Thursday, October 13, 2011, the opening night of the American Academy of Nursing 38th Annual Conference and Meeting at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. A reception will follow. For more information visit

“We unite across generations of leadership as we celebrate the career contributions of these distinguished nurse leaders,” said Academy President Catherine L. Gilliss, DNSc, RN, FAAN. “We are inspired by their values and commitment and we hope to build on their success as we lead into the future to improve the nation’s health.”

Each year, the Academy Board of Directors solicits nominations for Living Legends, vets the qualifications of each candidate, and selects a class of Living Legends. To be eligible, a Living Legend must have been a Fellow for at least 15 years and have demonstrated sustained influence and contributions of great distinction to nursing, health care, or the health care community.


The American Academy of Nursing ( anticipates and tracks national and international trends in health care, while addressing resulting issues of health care knowledge and policy. The Academy’s mission is to serve the public and nursing profession by advancing health policy and practice through the generation, synthesis, and dissemination of nursing knowledge.