Carole R. Myers has been named the Lucy Gibson Notable Woman of the Year for 2020. The award is given annually by the Knoxville Association of Women Executives (KAWE) in memory of a past president, Dr. Lucy Gibson.
Myers holds a doctorate, is a registered nurse and a fellow, American Academy of Nursing (FAAN). She is a professor at the University of Tennessee College of Nursing, a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at the George Washington University and past American Association of Colleges of Nursing policy fellow (2017-18).
She has been associated with the University of Tennessee since 2002. Prior to this she worked in the private business sector as a health benefits consultant for two Fortune 500 companies and owned and operated a private benefits consulting company. Myers started her career as a Family Nurse Practitioner, owning and operating the only solely nurse-owned rural primary care clinic in the state at the time.
Myers is a frequent speaker to local and international audiences. In addition, she writes and uses social media to advance various policies and reforms. She is a contributing editor and writes a policy column for the American Journal of Nursing. She frequently writes op-eds, columns, commentaries, book chapters, and articles for professional and lay publications. Myers co-hosts HealthConnections, a bi-weekly, award-winning radio show on WUOT, the Knoxville NPR-affiliate.
In presenting the award, Myers was recognized for having made “a strong impact on nursing and health care, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. She has held many significant roles in developing policies related to access to healthcare and the development of leadership skills in nursing. Her efforts at ‘engage scholarships,’ focused on disadvantaged populations, are an excellent example of public service and partnerships focusing on real work issues.”
Dr. Victoria Niederhauser, dean of the UT College of Nursing, called Myers “an unsung hero in health policy and advocacy for better health and healthcare for our state and nation. She has demonstrated exemplary research and creative activity in the area of health policy and advocacy and has led many initiatives that have made a significant difference in the health and well-being of our community.”
Myers stays grounded through her commitment to her rural lifestyle and family. She is an avid gardener, former and future beekeeper and outdoor enthusiast. She enjoys hiking in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and recently has embraced kayaking.
Locally founded in 1982, KAWE is dedicated to advancing its members professionally and personally through networking, mentoring and leadership opportunities. The Lucy Gibson Notable Woman of the Year selects a donation to be made to the charity of her choice. Dr. Carol Myers elected The Sertoma Center with a $500 donation being made by KAWE.