Metro Atlanta ANAC Chapter
(Last Updated 2005)
On September 21, 1992, seven nurses in Atlanta voted to seek charter as a local chapter of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care (ANAC). After meeting the Local Chapter Charter Application submission criteria, the founding members submitted the application to ANAC’s national office on August 23, 1993. The geographic scope of the new chapter included metro Atlanta and counties within a 50-mile radius. The charter indicates that the chapter was being formed because of an increasing interest by nurses in the community to “pool their resources to benefit HIV infected persons and facilitate communication between each other.” The founding officers are listed as Fran Yogev, President; Christine Turner, President-elect; Barbara Correro, Treasurer; and Mary Pittman, Secretary. However, in July 1993, Fran Yogev resigned as president due to personal reasons and when the charter application was submitted, Christine Turner had assumed the responsibilities of president. Other founding members listed in the original charter include Kathy Midlleton, Metta Johnson, and Betty Mear. Local dues were set at $10 per year and meetings were scheduled for the second Monday of each month.
The chapter has attempted to archive chapter meetings and activities, however, most of the early records that are held by the chapter focus more on ANAC’s national activities than on the local chapter. According to the records that are available, in 1994, the Metro Atlanta chapter included a total of 27 members – 25 active and 2 associate. Christine Turner continued to serve as president. Troy Spicer served as president in 1995 and during that year a letter was sent from Atlanta’s Mayor, Bill Campbell, to the national office of ANAC extending an invitation for our fair city to host the annual convention.
From 1996 and into 1997, Rose Campbell served as president. In 1996, the board members increased the local chapter dues to $20 and it has remained at that level ever since. Virginia (Ginny) Lipke was the 1997-1998 president. Ginny developed an ACRN certification guide for chapter members and the first Atlanta review course for the ACRN certification exam was provided in 1998. Since the inception of our chapter, educational meetings that provide updates on the latest research findings and guidelines of HIV care have been offered to members.
The president of the chapter for 1998-1999 was Hermeyone Hunter. Other officers included Laura Gallagher, Vice President; Gail Kropf, Treasurer; and Rosemary Donnelly, Secretary. In 1999, our chapter began to consistently hold educational dinner meetings every even numbered month and board meetings every odd numbered month. At the educational dinner meetings, the first 15 minutes is dedicated to business and then a presentation on a HIV related topic is presented. Under Hermeyone’s leadership the chapter established the nominations, education, and membership committees. The chapter also organized its first local HIV/AIDS conference for health care professionals. The conference, entitled HIV/AIDS: Keeping Up in the 21st Century, was held on October 18, 1999 at St. Joseph’s Hospital. At ANAC’s National Conference, one of our local members, Laura Gallagher, received the ANAC Master’s Fellowship in HIV Nursing Award.
The officers for 2000 were Laura Gallagher, President; Rosemary Donnelly, President-elect; Ed Chitty, Secretary; Gail Kropf, Treasurer; and Paul Robinson, Director-at Larger. Ginny Lipke again offered the ACRN certification review course for interested members. In 2000, the chapter partnered with the Southeast AIDS Education and Training Center (SEATEC) to hold the annual conference. The title for that year’s conference was Shifting Sands: Challenges, Controversies, and Care in HIV. This conference was held on September 29 at St. Joseph’s Hospital. The board voted in 2000 to financially support one of the leadership positions to attend ANAC’s National Conference. This decision was made on the premise that by attending the conference, a lot can be learned about the day-to-day running of the local chapter. At the National Conference, the chapter received the 2000 Over the Rainbow Campaign Award for recruiting 3 new members and reaching the Chapter Yellow 1 level. The final accomplishment during 2000 was the revision of the local bylaws so that they would be in accordance with the national standards.
In 2001, the board members included Rosemary Donnelly, President; Paul Robinson, President-elect; Ed Chitty, Secretary; Gloria Carusi, Treasurer; and Dirk LeFlore, Director-at-Large. During Rosemary’s presidency our chapter developed its first strategic plan and budget. The plan was presented to other chapters as a model. Our chapter continues to update the strategic plan and budget annually. The third local annual conference was again co-sponsored by the Metro Atlanta ANAC chapter and SEATEC. The conference was entitled Spotlight on HIV: The Second Wave and it was held on October 12 at St. Joseph’s Hospital. Recognizing that community service and advocacy as a group are important aspects of our mission, our chapter established the Community Services Committee in 2001. Through this committee, the chapter supported a nonprofit organization called the Regional Organization of Camping and Kids, Inc. (the ROCK). The ROCK is a free, recreational camping program for children who are infected and affected by HIV. Our chapter supported this organization by printing information about them in our newsletter, making announcements about the ROCK at our meetings, encouraging members to volunteer for their first camp that was to be held that summer, and by raising $1400.00 through a silent auction at our 2001 conference. This was also the first year that the chapter started to give away a free National and Local ANAC membership to current members at each dinner meeting. That year our chapter submitted an application to National for the Chapter Recognition Award, which, unfortunately, another chapter received.
The board members for 2002 were Paul Robinson, President; Mary Lynn Purcell, President-elect; Hermeyone Hunter, Secretary; Gloria Carusi, Treasurer; Glenda Smith, Director-at-Large. In 2002, we retained 34 members and recruited 7 new members for a total of 41 active members. Even though our chapter was not officially chartered until 1993, the chapter celebrated its 10-year anniversary and an event that featured Lucy Bradley-Springer, ANAC’s National President, as the guest speaker was held. During 2002, the chapter created an email group that for the purposes of improving communication. The community services committee continued to be quite active in 2002. ANAC members were represented at the Rock’s second summer camp for HIV infected /affected children, assisted at a local National HIV Testing Day event, participated in a fund raiser for the Grady pediatric HIV/AIDS clinic, and held a food drive for a local community based organization. An application for the Chapter Recognition Award was submitted again in 2002 and that year our chapter successfully obtained the award.
In 2003 the President for our chapter was Mary Lynn Purcell and the President –elect was Carla Johnson. Other officers included Wilmer McWilliams, Secretary; Rodney Fox, Treasurer; and Hermeyone Hunter, Director-at-Large. In addition to the officers, other board members who served included Andrea Jefferson-Saboor, Community Service Chair; Ericka Patrick, Nominations Chair; and Rosemary Donnelly, Membership Chair. During that year we retained 41 active members and recruited 4 new members. Our membership chair, Rosemary Donnelly, received the 2003 ACRN of the Year Award at the National Convention. Our chapter members continued again to be active in community service events such as National HIV Testing Day events, staffing PLWHA lounges at conference that were held in the Atlanta area, staffing the infirmary at the Rock, and hosting another food drive for a local community based organization. In 2003, members from our chapter obtained unrestricted grant funds to support an educational program on HIV that was designed to target nurses working in local hospital emergency departments (ED). The purpose of the program was to update ED nurses on current methods for diagnosing and treating HIV. Also in 2003, our members began serving as preceptors for nursing students from local universities.
Carla Johnson was the chapter’s President in 2004. The other board members included Barbara Blake, President-elect; Wilmer McWilliams, Secretary; Gloria Carusi, Treasurer; and Ericka Patrick, Director at Large. During 2004 we retained our 2003 members and added 7 new members. The chapter members who developed the ED curriculum, Hermeyone Hunter and Andrea Jefferson- Saboor, began implementing the program at hospitals throughout the Atlanta area. To measure the effectiveness of the program, several ANAC members developed a research study using a repeated measures design. Preliminary findings from the program were submitted in an abstract to the National Convention and it was accepted as a poster presentation. Also in 2004, our chapter partnered with SEATEC to provide an ACRN Certification Review Course. Twenty participants from across the state attended. Members continued to serve as preceptors for nursing students and participate in community service activities. At the December 2004 meeting, members donated toiletries for a local organization that provides housing for women living with HIV. Our members were active not only at the local level, but also the national level. Hermeyone Hunter began serving as a Director at Large for the HIV/AIDS National Certification Board (HANCB) in 2004 and she volunteered to serve as a member of the Scope and Standards Committee. Rosemary Donnelly facilitated a strategic planning session with the Chesapeake Bay Chapter using our original strategic planning meeting as her model.
The board members for 2005 are Barbara Blake, President; Donna Chambers, President-elect; Laura Carter-Williams, Secretary; Gloria Carusi, Treasurer; and Marie Todd-Turner, Director-at Large. The chapter continues to implement the ED Program and as of June 2005, the program has been provided at 5 emergency departments in the Atlanta metropolitan area and 52 ED have nurses participated. One of our chapter members, Mary Lynn Purcell, was nominated by her patients and selected by theBody.com as one of 73 outstanding professionals and inspiring people with HIV. In 2005 we have six dinner meetings scheduled for our members and have provided community service by assisting at a local National HIV Prevention Day event and staffing the PLWHA lounge at the 6ht Annual African American Outreach Imitative (AAOI). Three ANAC members also volunteered to conduct a yearlong research study for the AAOI task force. The purpose of the study is to assess the long-term effectiveness of the program content on the participants overall health and well-being. The findings from this study will be used by the task force to maintain their current funding stream and to solicit other resources.
Hopefully, these few pages have provided you with some insight into our chapter’s history. It has not always been an easy path, but we are proud of our 13-year history and of the hard work and dedication from our members that has contributed to our chapter’s success.