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As an assistant professor and later director of graduate studies at the University of Missouri's School of Health Related Professions in the 1970s, Thomas Dolan looked around and saw a lot of similar students.
The civil rights movement had burst onto the American scene in the preceding decades, and now the women's movement was in full swing—particularly on American campuses.
However the future healthcare leaders didn't seem to reflect the changes underway in society, Dolan thought.
But Dolan, who grew up with stories about his mother's time working as a nurse, including her service in Wales during World War II, was in a position to do something about it.
“They hadn't admitted a lot of women,” Dolan recalled. “So I admitted more women than we ever had. We've got so many challenges in healthcare, why would we exclude anyone who might have good ideas?”
That was just the beginning of a long career in healthcare and association management that took Dolan from Missouri to St. Louis University, and then out of academia to the American College of Healthcare Executives, where he would pursue that same goal of diversity on a larger scale.