Retired state Sen. Jeanne Nicholson, RN, MS, board vice chair of the Colorado Foundation for Universal Health Care, is the 2015 recipient of the University of Colorado Denver’s College of Nursing Lifetime Achievement Award.
“I’m delighted and honored to be recognized by the College of Nursing for our shared commitment to public health,” Nicholson said. “We need to assure access to high-quality affordable health care for everyone in Colorado.”
The award recognizes Nicholson for her 40-plus years as public health nursing leader and as a two-term County Commissioner and then State Senator. Through her career, Nicholson has worked to improve health throughout Colorado. She helped pass legislation that improves oral health care for low-income children and adults, improves patient outcomes, and protects children from abuse and neglect.
Nicholson gleaned her expertise as a nurse in rural and urban Colorado from 1965 to 2002. She has promoted access to affordable, high-quality health care throughout her prestigious career, including as a public health nurse since 1979.
Subsequent to her nursing career, Sen. Nicholson served eight years as a Gilpin County Commissioner and four years as a state senator. She has also been the President of the Colorado County Nurses Association, a board member of the Colorado Public Health Association, Chair of the Colorado Commission on Family Medicine, and Chair of the Gilpin County Board of Health, among many other positions in public life.
The Foundation’s mission—to research and educate about viable Colorado universal health care proposals — now gives her the opportunity to be a leading voice for ensuring every Colorado resident has quality health care
Nicholson also serves as a voluntary spokeswoman for ColoradoCareYES, a group leading the charge to pass ColoradoCare (Initiative #20), a plan designed by physician and State Sen. Irene Aguilar MD. Aguilar is widely considered the leading authority on health policy in the state legislature. ColoradoCareYES is in the final month of obtaining the necessary signatures to place ColoradoCare on the ballot.
Two economic analyses the Foundation commissioned on ColoradoCare have shown it would cover everyone and save billions in administrative costs.