Black News and News Makers in History: Hazel Johnson

African American news - Amazing African Americans in History remembers Hazel JohnsonHazel Johnson is the first African American woman to become a U.S. Army General.

Growing up in the Pennsylvania farmlands, her dream was to become a nurse. In 1950, she received her nursing degree from the Harlem Hospital in New York City, then earned her Bachelor's degree from Villanova University and entered the Army Nurse Corps in 1955.

By 1967, she was promoted to the rank of Major and had served in Japan at a U.S. Army Evacuation Hospital, Walter Reed Medical Center and three other hospitals where she was an operating room instructor and supervisor.

From 1969 to 1973, she was a staff member of the Army Medical Research and Development Command and helped develop new sterilizing methods for the Army's Field Hospital Systems. In 1974, she was promoted to Colonel, then appointed as Director of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Nursing, an extension of the University of Maryland's nursing school. From 1976 to 1978, she also served as Assistant Dean of the University of Maryland School of Nursing.

In 1978, earned a doctorate in Education Administration from the Catholic University. She was also sent to South Korea where she was the Chief of the Department of Nursing at the largest U.S. Army hospital there. In 1979, she returned to Washington, D.C. and was promoted to Brigadier General and sworn in as the 16th Chief of the Army Nurse Corps at the Pentagon ceremony.

In 1984, she retired from the U.S. Army, but has served as an advisor to several Surgeon Generals. In 1997, she was appointed Adjunct Professor of Nursing at Georgetown University. Hazel W. Johnson-Brown, USA Ret, RN, PhD, FAAN, has honorary degrees from Morgan State University, Villanova University, and the University of Maryland.

Compiled from http://www.blackpast.org/?q=aah/johnson-hazel-w-1927 and http://www.nurses.info/contemporary_hazel_johnson_brown.htm.