Officers of the National Council of Catholic Nurses (NCCN) Years/Name/Diocese/Office

Download List & Brief History

1909 – Guild of St. Radegone for Nurses forms in Boston, Massachusetts.

1924 – International Catholic Guild of Nurses (ICGN) founded in Milwaukee, Wisconsin under the spiritual directionof Fr. Edward J. Garesche, S.J.

1933 – 1st International Meeting of Catholic Nurses in Lourdes, France (now known as CICIAMS=(Comité International Catholique des Infirmières et Assistantes Médico-Sociales and in English: The International Catholic Committee of Nurses and Medico-Social Assistants) ***Medico-Social Assistants is the title for Advance Practice Nurses in Asia. They may not retain the title of “nurse.”

XXXX – ICGN adopts new constitution and bylaws of a “national character” and changes to the National Federation of Catholic Nurses (NFCN) headquartered in Chicago, Illinois

1935 – 2nd International Meeting of Catholic Nurses (CICIAMS), Rome, Italy

1937 – 3rd International Meeting of Catholic Nurses (CICIAMS), London, England

1942 – At some point NFCN becomes National Council of Catholic Nurses (NCCN)

1940-1942 #1
Mary Kelly, Diocese of Detroit, President
Mary Gillen, New Orleans Diocese, 1st VP
Gertrude Meyer, Baltimore, 2nd V.P.
Jane O’Rourk, Milwaukee, Secretary
Anne Houck, Toledo, Treasurer

1942-1944 #2
Mary Kelly, Diocese of Detroit, President
Mary Gillen, New Orleans Diocese, 1st VP
Gertrude Meyer, Baltimore, 2nd V.P.
Jane O’Rourk, Milwaukee, Secretary
Anne Houck, Toledo, Treasurer

1944-1946 #3
Anne V. Houck, Toledo, President
Gertrude Meyer, Baltimore, 1st V.P.
Estella Mann, Los Angeles, 2nd V.P.
Jane O’Rourk, Milwaukee, Secretary
Clare Casey, New York, Treasurer

October 28, 1945 – Youngstown Council of Catholic Nurses (YCCN) formed in the Catholic Diocese of Youngstown

May 20, 1946 Albany Diocese Council of Catholic Nurses forms under the auspices of Bishop Edmond F. Gibbons (260 members from 3 area deaneries)

1946-1948 #4
Anne V. Houck, Toledo, President (resigned 1947)
Estella Mann, Los Angeles, 1st V.P. (Appointed President 1947)
Rose Mary Maley Rochester, 2nd V.P.
Anne Dugan, Indianapolis, Secretary
Gertrude Meyer, Baltimore, Treasurer

1948-1950 #5
Estella Mann, Los Angeles, President
Rose Mary Maley, Rochester, 1st V.P.
Mary Baker, Denver, 2nd V.P.
Mary Knopp, Cleveland, Secretary (completed unexpired term of Anna Burns)
Gertrude Meyer, Baltimore, Treasurer

1950-1952 #6
Estella Mann, Los Angeles, President
Catherine Dempsey, Boston, 1st V.P.
Mary Kelly, Detroit, 2nd V.P.
Mary Knopp, Cleveland, Secretary
Clare Casey, New York, Treasurer

1952-1954 #7
Catherine Dempsey, Boston, President
Mary Sweeney, Washington, 1st V.P.
Adeline Braun, Louisville, 2nd V.P.
Helen Carroll, St. Paul, Secretary
Helen Coleman, Brooklyn, Treasurer

July 26, 1954 Cardinal Stritch launched the new Chicago local council: CCNAC-Council of Catholic Nurses Archdiocese of Chicago, combining three separate Catholic Nurses groups that existed in Chicago.

1954-1956 #8
Catherine Dempsey, Boston, President
Mary Knopp, Washington, 1st V.P.
Adeline Braun, Cleveland, 2nd V.P.
Helen Murphy, Detroit, Secretary (Resigned 1955)
Alyce Rooney, Syracuse, Treasurer

1956-1958 #9
Mary Knopp, Washington, President
Marie Costello, Chicago, 1st V.P.
Mary Delehanty, Brooklyn, 2nd V.P.
Myrtle Cavanaugh, San Francisco, Secretary
Alyce Rooney, Syracuse, Treasurer

1960-1962 #10
Marie Costello, Chicago, President
Mary Delehanty, Brooklyn, 1st V.P.
Helen Reetz, Dubuque, 2nd V.P.
Katherine Fitzgerald, Milwaukee, Secretary
Irene Duffy, Baltimore, Treasurer

1962-1964 #11
Marie Costello, Chicago, President
Mary Delehanty, Brooklyn, 1st V.P.
Mary McClanahan, Covington, 2nd V.P.
Vera Mellor, Washington, Secretary
Irene Duffy, Baltimore, Treasurer

1964-1966 #12
Mary Delehanty, Brooklyn, President
Helen Reetz, Dubuque, 1st V.P.
Ruth Vanisky, Los Angeles, 2nd V.P.
Vera Mellor, Washington, Secretary
Helen Baggot, St. Paul, Treasurer

1966-1969 #13
Mary Delehanty, Brooklyn, President

1969-1970 #14
Mary Anita McHugh, President NCCN, USA

1970 — NCCN-USA disbanded

1970-1993 — Local Councils continue to flourish across the United States in Youngstown, Ohio; Albany, NY; Fall River, Massachusetts; Chicago, Illinois & in other locations in the U.S.A.

1993 — National Association of Catholic Nurses-USA (NACN-USA) formed with the assistance of Bishop Imesch, Diocese of Joliet & listed in the Kenedy Directory

1993-1996 #1 Eula Sforza, RN, President (IL) (World War II Nurse)
Marylee Meehan, Vice President (MA)
Mary Pelizzari, Secretary/Treasurer (IL)

1996-1998 #2 Marylee Meehan, President

1998-2000 #3 Marlene Rasmussen, President

2000-2002 #4 Diana Newman, EdD, RN, President

2001 Formation of the MidSouth Area Association of Catholic Nurses (MSAACN), Diocese of Memphis

2002-2004 #5 Sookie Domingues-Escadon, RN, President (University of Texas Health Sciences SON)

2004-2006 #6 Thomas Connelly, RN, President

2006-2008 #7 Amy Hickman, RN, President

2008-2010 #8 Kathy Kirkpatrick, RN, President

2010-2012 #9 Cheryl Hettman, PhD, RN, President

2011-2017-Marylee Meehan, RN, MA – Appointed by Pope Benedict to serve on the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Assistance of Healthcare Workers

2012-2014 #10 Alma Abuelouf, BSN, RN, Memphis, President

2014-2016 #11 Diana Newman, EdD, RN, President

2016-2017 #12 Jane Cardea, PhD, RN, President (resigned 24Feb2017)

2017-2018 #13 Diana Ruzicka, RN, MSN, MA, MA, CNS-BC, COL, U.S. Army Retired, President (as President-Elect assumed presidency 24Feb17)

2018-2019 #14 Marie Hilliard, MS, MA, JCL, PhD, RN, COL, U.S. Army Retired, President (resigned 22Feb2018)

2019-2020 #15 Diana Ruzicka, RN, MSN, MA, MA, CNS-BC, COL, U.S. Army Retired, President (appointed by NACN-USA BOD on 24Feb2019 to complete term of office of the president to 30Jun2020)

Updated 2/24/2019 – Please email local council formation dates to CatholicNurses@nacn-usa.org.