Kathleen says, “It’s a privilege to serve as a nurse. It’s our duty to expand the profession.” Those are not just words to her. They are a life philosophy that she has demonstrated throughout her career in radiology. A chance opportunity providing weekend staffing relief in diagnostic imaging in 1988 expanded quickly to a regular position in Interventional Radiology. From that start in 1988 to now, Kathleen travels an inspiring path of service, leadership, mentoring, and expansion of the profession of radiologic and imaging nursing.
Her journey started immediately as Kathleen became a member of the, now disbanded, Maryland Radiological Nurses Association. In her nine-year tenure with this organization, she served as Vice President, President, and Executive Board Member. Understanding the rewards of service and the responsibility of moving imaging nursing forward, Kathleen expanded her reach through involvement with The American Radiologic Nurses Association (ARNA), the precursor to our current professional association, ARIN (Association of Radiologic and Imaging Nurses). As a member of ARNA/ARIN, Kathleen served many roles including serving on the Board of Directors as Secretary and later as President. Kathleen’s leadership allowed a place for radiology nurses to sit at the table of other nursing and radiology associated organizations such as:
Kathleen further expands our profession through her involvement as a peer reviewer for various nursing publications and by writing several professional articles and book chapters on radiology. Kathleen mentors new writers in her current ARIN role as the editor for the Journal of Radiology Nursing (JRN) and during her time as editor for the Core Curriculum for Radiologic and Imaging Nursing, 3rd Ed. She states one of her proudest moments as editor is when she presents the annual editor's award and sees the authors experience recognition for their work of writing. Recently, she was glad to see highlights of JRN articles published in another radiology professional journal (Radiology Business), thus helping recognition of JRN by a wider audience, including radiology administrators.
Kathleen’s contributions to nursing have not gone unnoticed. In 2018, she received three separate recognitions for leadership and nursing advocacy. She received the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Award from Who’s Who in America. She received the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing Dean’s Award for Outstanding Nurse leader specifically for her contributions in radiology nursing. This award honors an “alumnus who demonstrates excellence in nursing advocacy, patient advocacy, administration and leadership; serves as a champion for the nursing profession, actively seeks to improve nursing management, administration and goes above and beyond across the nursing practice continuum.” Additionally, she received the Maryland Nurses Association’s Outstanding Pathfinder Award that recognizes a MNA member who "has demonstrated excellence and creative leadership that fosters the development of the nursing profession. The recipient has pioneered in innovation in nursing or developed creative approaches to further nursing's agenda."
Kathleen Gross certainly lives her beliefs and she is right, it is a privilege to serve as a nurse. Working with nurses like Kathleen is also a privilege.