Judith A. Berg, PhD, RN, WHNP-BC, FNAP, FAANP, FAAN, clinical professor emerita at the University of Arizona College of Nursing, has been named the 2020 winner of the Fran Way Legacy Award by the National Association of Nurse Practitioners in Women’s Health (NPWH). The award is presented to a nurse practitioner who has demonstrated commitment to women’s health through practice, education and advocacy.
“I am incredibly honored to receive this award, as it is the culmination of my professional career dedicated to the health and well-being of women,” Dr. Berg said. “This award underscores my lifelong goal of highlighting the need for clinical services and health policies that provide health care for all women. Further, the award emphasizes our need to provide appropriate educational content so that nurse practitioners can deliver the health care women so desperately need.”
Over the course of her nearly five-decade career, Dr. Berg has promoted access to the full range of reproductive health care for all women, has helped reduce health disparities and has advanced science to better understand women’s health issues, including symptom management and health promotion across the lifespan. She also has pushed to expand the role of the women’s health nurse practitioner (WHNP), a specialty within the nurse practitioner profession that focuses on providing obstetrical, gynecological and primary care to women at all stages of life within inpatient and outpatient settings.
“The women’s health nurse practitioner role was created to fill a significant gap in health care services tailored to women’s unique needs,” Dr. Berg said. “I was fortunate to receive the finest education and training, and that launched my long career of caring and mandating for high-quality health care for all women.”
The Fran Way Legacy Award was named after its first recipient, Fran Way, RNC-E, WHNP, MS, a nurse practitioner who helped cement women’s health as a specialty within her profession. The second recipient, Mary Rubin, PhD, WHNP-BC, FAANP, initiated services to scores of women in need of cervical cancer screening and treatment. Both previous recipients were integral to providing the highest quality care to women across the lifespan.
“Everyone who knows Dr. Berg is aware of her passion and advocacy for women’s health,” said her nominator, Aimee Chism Holland, DNP, WHNP-BC, FNP-C, FAANP, assistant dean for graduate clinical education at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. “Dr. Berg is a renowned international WHNP leader. Other than Fran Way and Mary Rubin, I cannot think of anyone else who has devoted so much time, energy and hard work to advance our profession. Dr. Berg is a very special individual who has had a wonderful impact on women’s health.”
Dr. Berg has participated in 19 grants that she devoted to advance women’s health. She also has received numerous awards for her leadership, mentorship and service throughout her nursing career. In 2019, she was appointed by University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins, MD, as a clinical professor emerita of nursing in honor of her exemplary service over 22 years to the College of Nursing and the University of Arizona.