PULSE: Spotlight on a Leader: Laura Kimble, Ph.D., RN, FNP-C, FAHA

By Laura Raines, Pulse editor

Current job: Professor of nursing at Georgia Baptist College of Nursing of Mercer University in Atlanta

Laura Kimble

Laura Kimble is a professor at the Georgia Baptist College of Nursing of Mercer University in Atlanta. Photo by Barry Williams, for the AJC.

Past jobs: She started her career as a cardiovascular nurse in 1980. While working at King’s Daughters Hospital in Ashland, Ky., Kimble treated a patient who worked in a steel mill and came to her with chest pains.

“He wanted to be able to walk the half-mile from the parking lot to the time clock so that he could do his job as a crane operator,” Kimble said. “That’s what led me to want to do cardiovascular research.”

A nurse educator and researcher for 25 years, she has taught at Indiana Wesleyan University, Emory University’s Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing and Georgia State University’s Byrdine F. Lewis School of Nursing.

Recent accomplishments: Kimble was named the first recipient of the Piedmont Healthcare Endowed Chair in Nursing at Georgia Baptist College of Nursing. She will use her research and teaching background to encourage new research among Mercer’s faculty and to mentor students enrolled in the school’s new doctoral program in nursing.

Family: Kimble lives in Lawrenceville with her husband, Nathan, an airline pilot, and her 10-year-old son, Tyler.

What makes a good leader: “A great leader leads by example in many ways. She must be strongly centered in ethics and have a sense of fairness.

“It’s so important to have the ability to celebrate the accomplishments of others. When the best leaders hire someone smarter than them, rather than squelch that person’s abilities, they embrace and encourage them.”

What are you most proud of in your career? “Helping mentor others to achieve their goals. When someone says that they want to be the type of faculty member I am, that’s the best compliment you can get.”

Who has inspired or mentored you? “An early mentor, Dr. Kathleen King at the University of Rochester, saw my potential and encouraged me. She had enough respect for me to give my work strong critiques. She had the courage to say the hard things, but always with the intention of wanting to see me grow.”

Away from work: “I like walking and reading and quilting. I have a lot of my grandmother’s quilt tops and I’m trying to finish them as she would have.”

Rule to live by: “Treat others the way you would want to be treated.”

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