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A Visit with Dean Emerita Billye Brown: School of Nursing fetes former dean on her birthday

Posted: Oct. 6, 2016

Dean Alexa Stuifbergen presents the
Dean Emerita pronouncement to Dean Billye Brown

Ms. Luci Baines Johnson and Dean Emerita
Billye Brown celebreate Brown's 90th birthday.

On the occasion of her 90th birthday, former Dean Billye Brown was the guest of honor of the School of Nursing at a luncheon gala. During the festivities, she was also named dean emerita. In attendance were current and
 former faculty and alumni — many from across the nation. Also in attendance was the School’s special friend and longtime supporter Ms. Luci Baines Johnson.

School of Nursing: What did being named dean emerita mean to you?

Brown: It was a wonderful surprise to be named dean emerita of
the School of Nursing. I don’t remember my response when Dean Stuifbergen announced it; I had not expected it, but I was very pleased. The School, students and faculty have always been most important to me. Before, during and even after my time as dean, I continue to evaluate any action I might take by questioning myself about what impact would it have on the School. I love the School of Nursing with all my heart, and this honor is a warm and wonderful embrace that means the world to me.

School of Nursing: What are some of your favorite memories from the School of Nursing?

Brown: I have memories of students from each of our programs that have made tremendous contributions to the profession of nursing. I am proud of that. Some of my memories are regrets, like I regret that our current dean, Dean Alexa Stuifbergen, was never in one of my classes. But I am proud she was in school while I was dean.

Some people know that shortly after I received this honor, I had a stroke. I am nearly fully recovered from that now, and I was honored to have so many of the nurses, especially those who were former students, take such good care of me. Like receiving this honor, having that community of nurses bring their skills to caring for me truly brought my experience as dean full circle. It was wonderful to see and be connected to so many and to experience what wonderful and expert nurses they have become.

School of Nursing: What is the best part about being a dean?

Brown: Having a position in which you have the privilege of seeing individuals, faculty members and students grow professionally and helping others grow and develop. Also being a proud ambassador for The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing, locally, nationally and Internationally.

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