Three receive prestigious nursing honor

Local nursing educators named Fellows by AAN

Three local nursing leaders will be inducted as Fellows by the American Academy of Nursing during its 40th annual meeting in October in Washington, D.C.

Those selected from the UT Health Science Center San Antonio are:

  • Janie Canty-Mitchell, Ph.D., RN, professor and chair of the Department of Family and Community Health Systems in the School of Nursing;
  • Sara Gill, Ph.D., RN, IBCLC, professor and director of doctoral programs in the School of Nursing; and
  • Julie Novak, D.N.Sc., RN, CPNP, FAANP, vice dean and professor in the School of Nursing.

Eileen T. Breslin, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, dean of the School of Nursing, said all three San Antonio educators have contributed significantly to nursing, nursing education, patient care and health care policy making.

“Drs. Canty-Mitchell, Gill and Novak have all dedicated their lives to advancing nursing education, promoting health care policies, and improving the health of patients,” Dr. Breslin said. “All three truly deserve this incredible honor for their years of accomplishments.”

According to the AAN, selection criteria include evidence of significant contributions to nursing and health care and sponsorship by two current Academy Fellows. Applicants are reviewed by a panel of elected and appointed Fellows, and selection is based, in part, on the extent the nominee’s nursing careers influenced health policies and the health and wellbeing of all. New Fellows are eligible to use the credentials of FAAN (Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing) after their induction in October.

AAN President Joanne Disch, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, said, “Selection for fellowship in the Academy is one of the most prestigious honors in the field of nursing. I congratulate all of the new Fellows and look forward to honoring their accomplishments and welcoming them into the Academy.”

Details on the three honorees:

Dr. Janie Canty-Mitchell is a seasoned leader with experience in psychiatric mental health care, public health, child and adolescent health, clinical research, teaching in higher education institutions, undergraduate and graduate student mentoring, program development and evaluation, administration and supervision, grant writing, and project management. A major emphasis of future administrative leadership will be to increase the number and quality of culturally competent novice and advanced professional nurses to promote health, prevent diseases, and care for individuals, families, and communities across the lifespan.

Dr. Sara Gill has focused her career on practice, service and research on improving breastfeeding incidence, duration and exclusivity, especially in vulnerable populations, to improve the health of mothers and babies. Her publications and presentations have been widely disseminated, both nationally and internationally. She is a Distinguished Teaching Professor and includes students and junior faculty on all of her work. She is on the editorial review board for two journals as well as a reviewer of many others. She is director of research and special projects for the International Lactation Consultant Association.

Dr. Julie Novak has developed nurse-managed clinics, educated hundreds of pediatric nurse practitioners, initiated a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree and led nursing students on service-learning projects in Mexico, Russia, China and South Africa during her 36-year career. Since joining the Health Science Center in 2009, she has developed a network of faculty-practice clinics. She is director of the Student Health Center, Employee Health and Wellness Clinic and the UT Nursing Clinical Enterprise, which together provides care for more than 10,000 children and adults.


The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, one of the country’s leading health sciences universities, ranks in the top 3 percent of all institutions worldwide receiving National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding. The university’s schools of medicine, nursing, dentistry, health professions and graduate biomedical sciences have produced approximately 28,000 graduates. The $736 million operating budget supports eight campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. For more information on the many ways “We make lives better®,” visit

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