Class of 1984

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. 

The most recent listings appear first. More info may be available at and in the Class Notes sections of Vanderbilt Nurse Magazine at

Joyce Feigel Backman, BSN’84, was featured on the Westport Chapter of Hadassah Connecticut’s website as a “member of the month” in 2018. She belongs to the Hadassah Nurses Council. 

Suzanne McMurtry Baird, BSN’84, MSN’95, is one of two presenters on the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses podcast, “COVID-19 in the Perinatal Space.” She co-authored “Statewide Quality Improvement Initiative to Implement Immediate Postpartum Long-acting Reversible Contraception,” published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology in April 2020. Suzanne was elected president of the AWHONN board of directors in October 2019. She received the AWHONN Excellence in Clinical Education Award in June 2017. She co-edited  Intrapartum Management Modules, 5th ed ., the runner-up in the American Journal of Nursing's Book of the Year in 2016 for the maternal-child health category. Suzanne is founder of Clinical Concepts in Obstetrics Inc. 

Elizabeth Burgess-Dowdell, BSN’84, is lead author of “Risk Behaviors of High School Students Who Report Knowing Someone Who Self-harms,” published in January 2020 in Issues in Mental Health Nursing , and co-authored “Using the Word ‘Healthy’ in an Emergency Food Pantry: An Unexpected Response,” published in Public Health Nursing in September. 

Kelly McCampbell Gentry, BSN’84, is director at the Oklahoma Center for Adult Stem Cell Research in Oklahoma City. She recently represented VUSN on the Vanderbilt University Alumni Board (2018). 

Debbie Dunn Gregory, BSN’84, was featured in the Johnson & Johnson Notes on Nursing newsletter in November 2019 for her work in innovative clinical models and the founding of the Nursing Institute for Healthcare Design. She is a member of the Clemson University Academy of Nursing Excellence in Design and was honored by the Nursing Institute for Healthcare Design as the first recipient of the Debbie Gregory Leadership Award. Debbie is co-editor of the Health Environments Research and Design Journal, and authored two chapters in a book, Planning and Design for Healthcare Environments: A Nurse’s Perspective . She is senior clinical consultant with SSR in Nashville. 

Jackie Garrett Moreland, BSN’84, is clinical quality improvement specialist for the Tennessee Center for Patient Safety, part of the Tennessee Hospital Association (2020). 

Cole Powers, BSN’80, MSN’84, was promoted to assistant professor at VUSN in January 2020. 

Robin Rosen Schuman, BSN’84, is owner and CEO of Fairview Medical-Legal Consulting in New York, New York. She founded the company after serving 17 years as in-house medical consultant for Aaronson, Rappaport, Feinstein & Deutsch, where she received the Employee of The Year Award. 

Reita Varney, MSN’84 , of Akron, Ohio, passed away May 10, 2020. 

Scarlett Hackman West, BSN’84, is an adjunct instructor of nursing at Indian River State College in Fort Pierce, Florida (2017).