Nursing by example



Table of Contents


Emory Nursing Magazine


Ann Conner

Many Atlantans volunteer several hours of their free time, but few match the efforts of Ann Connor. The School of Nursing's clinical assistant professor has built an extensive resumé of working with the underserved and inspiring her students to do the same. In recognition of those efforts, she received a Nursing Excellence Award from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in May as part of its third annual Celebration of Nurses.

Connor is a family nurse practitioner who teaches community and public health nursing. She helps oversee the school's participation in the Farmworker Family Health Program in Moultrie, Ga., and at the Gateway Center, which treats homeless patients who have acute or chronic illnesses.

"She is humble, caring, and self-sacrificing, yet energetic and always on top of things," says Maureen Kelley, chair of the school's family and community nursing department. "She asks students what learning activities they like most and then manages to incorporate all those styles into her teaching. Nursing is so very lucky to have her."

Connor has worked with the homeless since she moved to Atlanta in 1980. She and her husband had a steady stream of homeless people living with them for 12 years. They created Café 458 in 1988. The café is a full-service restaurant for the homeless. Its customers also have access to medical care, drug and alcohol treatment, counseling, employment services, phones, and a mailing address. Because its recovery program is a minimum of six months, compared with many that are less than 30 days, its relapse rate is very low.

Connor and her husband have stepped back from the day-to-day running of the café, but she still takes her students there for clinical rotations. Says former student Crystal Bailey, 06N, 07MN, "Ann has inspired countless student nurses like me to embrace the true heart of nursing—providing care and service to the most vulnerable."