Overcoming initial queasiness, Trudy Gaillard, PhD, RN, CDE, FAHA became a nationally acclaimed nurse educator and researcher

Trudy Gaillard, PhD, RN, CDE, FAHAIn her senior year of high school, Trudy Gaillard, PhD, RN, CDE, FAHA volunteered in her local community hospital as a candy striper. “At first, I would come home telling my mom a lot of stories and crying, ‘Oh my God, I saw blood today.’ But what it taught me was that nurses have to have compassion, they have to be good listeners, and they really have to love what they do… what I kept in the back of my head was ‘I’m going to love this even though I don’t love blood.’”

Today, Dr. Gaillard is a distinguished nursing professional and educator whose research made her a nationally recognized subject expert in ethnic differences in the cardiovascular disease, cognitive impairment, and the development of type two diabetes.

Dr. Gaillard’s work struck a chord with Nurses’ Station host and Regis College Assistant Professor of Nursing Lawana Brown, whose husband, mother, and other family members are diabetic. Remembering how, as a child, she cared for her grandmother, an amputee, when other family members were too squeamishness, Lawana describes diabetes as “the beginning of me taking care of people and wanting to be a nurse.”

Her conversation with this remarkable nurse educator begins with some advice which everyone considering nursing as a profession should know…