Class of 1979

Every VUSN graduate has exciting things happening in her or his life, both professionally and personally. Class Notes – printed twice a year in the Vanderbilt Nurse Magazine and available online on this page – is an opportunity for you to not only learn what other alumni are doing but also share news about your life. We would love to hear what you've been up to! Please contact us with any updates, or call 615-322-4836. And, when posting on social media please tag us! #VUSN

Look below for news from your classmates as of June 30, 2022; items received since Jan. 1 are shown in red font.


Ed Blackman, MSN'79 , of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, passed away December 8, 2021. He retired in August 1996 from the Alvin C. York Veterans Affairs Medical Center. 

Betsy Brach, BSN'79, MSN'81, has an experiential psychotherapy practice for individuals, couples and groups in Bethesda, Maryland (2020).

Susan Roberts Cooper, BSN'79, MSN'94, was featured in the June 2016 issue of Memphis Medical News. She is senior vice president and chief integration officer at Regional One Health in Memphis, Tennessee.

Beth Colvin Huff, BSN'74, MSN'79, received the American Society for Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology Distinguished Service Award in 2016. 

Deborah Knauer, BSN'79, is an elder law attorney with her private practice in Jacksonville, Florida (2022).

Nancy Greer Lagrew, BSN'79, of Irvine, California, passed away in February 2015. 

Lissa King Madigan, BSN'79 , of Little Rock, Arkansas, passed away July 26, 2021.

Marie Phillips, BSN'79, was a finalist for The Tennessean's Salute to Nurses awards in 2015, for her work at VUSN's school-based health clinic at Park Avenue Elementary School in Nashville. 

Randy Rasch, MSN'79, co-sponsored a challenge gift in memory of late professor Tom Christenbery, MSN'87, PhD'04, during Vanderbilt Giving Day and presented at the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties conference, both in April 2022. He was a panelist for "Leadership in the Time of Coronavirus: Stories from the Top," in April 2021, part of the VUSN Dore to Door Alumni Forum, and a speaker for "The Future of Nursing Education," hosted by the VUSN Dean's Office in October. He was appointed by Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer to lead a state-wide effort to reduce health disparities for people of color, and was elected board member-at-large of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, both in February 2020. Randy was inducted as a fellow into the American Academy of Nursing that October, and was interviewed for "Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and the NP Role," an episode of NP Pulse: The Voice of the Nurse Practitioner , a podcast hosted by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. He was highlighted in a June 2018 USA Today supplement featuring men in nursing, and received the Lulu Wolf Hassenplug Alumni Award presented by the VUSN Alumni Association during the school's annual awards ceremony in October. Randy was named dean of the Michigan State University College of Nursing in Lansing in 2015.  

Jim Rhudy, BSN'79, is an assistant professor of neurology at the University of Tennessee-Health Science Center College of Medicine in Memphis (2020).

Cindy Selleck, MSN'79, was named a Visionary Leader by the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing in April 2021.

Christine Patrick Sharpe, MA'71, BSN'79, MSN'88 , of Nashville, passed away February 24, 2021.

Carol Masters Stoltz, MSN'79, EMBA'89 , of Nashville, passed away January 28, 2018. 

Margaret McAvoy Trimpey, MSN'79 , of Signal Mountain, Tennessee, passed away December 10, 2016.