Betty Anderson, RN, BSN, M.Ed received her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from the University of Washington and her Master’s in Education from Whitworth College.
Since 1940, Betty has been an innovative leader in nursing administration and education where she devoted 22 years of service, in addition to her staff nursing. She worked tirelessly in the development of a baccalaureate nursing program in Spokane that would allow associate degree and diploma educated registered nurses to achieve a BSN degree.
As president of the Spokane League for Nursing in the 1960s, Betty led local nursing organizations as she met with regional and national nursing leaders, administrators, and educators to garner their support of a consortium approach to the program. Ultimately, Betty, along with one other colleague (Betty Harrington) convinced the president of Washington State University to accept administrative responsibility for this new program, of which the Intercollegiate Center for Nursing Education was established.
Throughout her tenure as an educator at the ICNE, she provided leadership in sculpting the nursing programs design, which for many years was the only curriculum of its kind in the United States. Subsequently, she felt the need to devise a program that would enable registered nurses working in Walla Walla, the Tri-Cities, Yakima, and Wenatchee to complete course and clinical work for their BSN. Eventually, under her leadership, the Yakima program was expanded to also accept the basic baccalaureate students. Betty’s futuristic approach to nursing education, and expertise in working with colleagues and university officials opened entirely new, innovative opportunities for the rural registered nurse to advance his or her education.
Between her long tenure with St. Luke’s Memorial Hospital as Director of both Nursing Services and Nursing Education, and with the ICNE as Assistant and Associate Dean, Betty served for two years as Director of Nursing Services and Consultant to Kootenai Memorial Hospital in Coeur d’Alene, ID, where she established a Women’s Auxiliary and Candy Striper program.
For nearly 50 years Betty has been an active member of the Washington State Nurses Association contributing countless hours of work on numerous state level commissions, boards, and committees which included: the first WSNA Commission on Nursing Administration, the Committee on Public Relations and Membership, and the Committee on Continuing Education. She served as treasurer of the Inland Empire Nurses Association, provided leadership for two terms as president of the Spokane League for Nursing, and served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Washington State League for Nursing Education.