Susan Hassmiller, PhD, RN, FAAN, who joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 1997, is presently the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation senior adviser for nursing. In this role, she shapes and leads the Foundation’s strategies to address nurse and nurse faculty shortages in an effort to create a higher quality of patient care in the United States. Drawn to the Foundation’s “organizational advocacy for the less fortunate and underserved,” Hassmiller is helping to assure that RWJF's commitments in nursing have a broad and lasting national impact.
In partnership with AARP, Hassmiller directs the Foundation’s Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, which seeks to increase access to high-quality, patient-centered care in a health care system where nurses contribute as essential partners in achieving success. This 49-state effort strives to implement the recommendations of the Institute of Medicine’s report on the Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health. Hassmiller served as the report’s study director.
Hassmiller, who has been very involved with the Red Cross in many capacities, was a member of the National Board of Governors for the American Red Cross, serving as chair of the Disaster and Chapter Services Committee and national chair of the 9/11 Recovery Program. She is now a member of the National Nursing Committee, and is serving as the Board Chair for the Central New Jersey Red Cross. Citing Clara Barton’s influence in founding the American Red Cross, Hassmiller has been a volunteer for the organization since college and has been involved in Red Cross disaster relief efforts in the United States and abroad, including tornadoes in the Midwest, Hurricane Andrew, September 11th, the 2004 Florida hurricanes and Katrina, and the tsunami in Indonesia. Previously, Hassmiller served with the Health Resources and Services Administration, where she was the executive director of the U.S. Public Health Service Primary Care Policy Fellowship and worked on other national and international primary care initiatives. She also has worked in public health settings at the local and state level and taught public health nursing at the University of Nebraska and George Mason University in Virginia.
Hassmiller is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, a member of the Joint Commission’s National Nurse Advisory Council, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services National Nurse Steering Committee, and the New York Academy of Medicine. She received a PhD in nursing administration and health policy from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., master’s degrees in health education from Florida State University and community health nursing from the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Florida State University. She is a distinguished alumna for all the schools of nursing from which she graduated; the 2008 John P. McGovern Award recipient from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing; the 2009 recipient of the Florida Association of Community Colleges Lifetime Achievement Award, and the 2009 Community Service Award from George Washington University. Most notably, Sue is the 2009 recipient of the Florence Nightingale Medal, the highest international honor given to a nurse by the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Hassmiller and her husband, Robert Hassmiller, PhD, CEO of the National Association of College Auxiliary Services, live in Princeton Junction, N.J., and enjoy biking, hiking, dance and long walks with their dog Jake. They have two adult children.