Nearing four decades in nursing, the compassion Brenda has in caring for her patients has also defined who she is personally and spiritually. Co-workers view her as inspirational: “When you ask someone who works with Brenda what pops to mind when you mention her name, one of the first things you will hear mentioned is about her passion – for her patients and also for those she works with. She represents herself and Vanderbilt well, which is one of the reasons she was a fabulous magnet champion. She is the image of a Vanderbilt Nurse.”
Brenda strives to be the best that she can be for her patients, coworkers, and family: “It’s truly an honor and privilege to care for patients.” Vanderbilt University Medical Center isn’t just an employer but a connection that has enhanced her life. Although she took a “temporary” hiatus away from VUMC to pursue a management position, the support she received from her colleagues both before leaving and while gone encouraged her to return and she is celebrating over twenty years being back at home.
Brenda enjoys many benefits to working at Vanderbilt. Being a teaching facility Brenda says, “With every shift there is something new to learn: New medications, new procedures, new techniques, and the opportunity to meet new people.” In addition to providing financial and educational support for her and her daughter, Brenda called upon her colleagues for support and assistance with her church’s health ministry. Several of her co-workers joined her in volunteering to provide free health assessments for those in need while VUMC donated supplies. “My position at Vanderbilt helps connect me with one of my favorite bible verses: ‘A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.’”
Knowing Vanderbilt has given so much to her, Brenda gives back to her community. She is a volunteer for Reading is Fundamental and the American Diabetes Association, which honored her in 2007 with the Recognition Award for Distinguished Community Service for outstanding services and achievements to the African American Initiative program. Away from work, she spends time with her three children with whom she is extremely close—Jaime, Angie, and Kevin—and also enjoys reading inspiration studies and fiction.