May 4, 2007

CONTACT: Marc Kaplan
(215) 662-2560

Invitation to Cover
Judge Rendell, Award-Winning Journalists, and Penn Leaders
Kick Off National Nurses Week at New Photo Exhibit
Exhibit Highlights Critical Role – and Need – of Nurses

(PHILADELPHIA) – Judge Marjorie O. Rendell, First Lady of Pennsylvania, will be on-hand to kick off National Nurses Week at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP). She will attend a ceremony showcasing the new Just a Nurse photography exhibit, a unique “inside” view of nursing’s rewards and challenges.  Additional guests and speakers include the award-winning journalists and nursing advocates, as well as some of the nurses who are featured in the exhibit.


Judge Marjorie O. Rendell, who has served as Chair of the Board of Overseers of the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing since 1999, is a member of the Board of Overseers of PENN Medicine, and is a former Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Visiting Nurse Association of Greater Philadelphia.  Judge Rendell is a strong and long-time advocate for greater recognition of nurses’ extensive training and commitment.  As First Lady of Pennsylvania, she has supported Governor Rendell’s many initiatives to improve health care and help address the nursing shortage through increased opportunities for nursing education and career development. 

Photographer Earl Dotter, who has been cited for “leading the way in portraying the dignity of working people,” received a Josephine Patterson Albright Fellowship, was featured in the Columbia Journalism Review and has received honors from the American Public Health Association and Robert F. Kennedy Book Awards.

Writer Suzanne Gordon, a national expert on nursing, who has written or commented for The New York Times, Boston Globe, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Washington Post, Atlantic Monthly, CBS Radio News, American Public Media, and other media.  She is the author of six books and co-editor of the Cornell University Press series “The Culture and Politics of Health Care Work.” 

Victoria Rich, PhD, RN, FAAN, Chief Nursing Officer for the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, who has spearheaded numerous initiatives to raise awareness of the importance of the nursing profession.  An acknowledged expert on patient safety and staff dynamics, she frequently presents at national and international conferences and has published in such leading journals as the Nurse Leader, Journal of Emergency Medicine, Critical Pathways in Cardiology and American Journal of Nursing.


Monday, May 7

Public ceremony
4 – 5:30 p.m.

Reception (for invited guests only; media welcome) immediately following

Note: Judge Rendell is scheduled to arrive at 5:30 p.m.

(Exhibit runs through May 18, 7:30 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. daily)


Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania [driving directions]
3400 Spruce Street, Ravdin Mezzanine [floor plan]
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Nurses from all 40 HUP units were photographed and interviewed through the fall and winter. The exhibit illustrates the wide range of roles and responsibilities nursing entails, and the intense day-to-day pace of a major, 772-bed urban academic medical center. 

According to the American Hospital Association, U.S. hospitals need more than 100,000 registered nurses and have a vacancy rate of 8.5 percent.  The January/February 2007 issue of Health Affairs reports that the nursing shortage is expected to triple by 2020, to 340,000.

Editor's Notes:

  • Photos from the exhibit are available for media use 
  • Media wishing to attend the reception following the public ceremony should contact Marc Kaplan at (215) 349-5660 or


PENN Medicine is a $2.9 billion enterprise dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and high-quality patient care. PENN Medicine consists of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

Penn's School of Medicine is ranked #2 in the nation for receipt of NIH research funds; and ranked #3 in the nation in U.S. News & World Report's most recent ranking of top research-oriented medical schools. Supporting 1,400 fulltime faculty and 700 students, the School of Medicine is recognized worldwide for its superior education and training of the next generation of physician-scientists and leaders of academic medicine.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System includes three hospitals, all of which have received numerous national patient-care honors [Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania; Pennsylvania Hospital, the nation's first hospital; and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center]; a faculty practice plan; a primary-care provider network; two multispecialty satellite facilities; and home care and hospice.

This release is available online at