Thursday, February 1, 2018 from 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM EST
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University Club of Albany 
141 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12210

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Teresa Casey 
University Club of Albany Foundation 


Clara D. Noyes, R.N., Life of a Global Nursing Leader

Meet local author Roger L. Noyes at a reception and book talk on Thursday, February 1 at 5:30 p.m.



The University Club of Albany Foundation is pleased brighten up a dark February evening with a talk by Capital Region author Roger L. Noyes, who has published a biography of luminary Red Cross nurse Clara Noyes, who enrolled 20,000 nurses for service in World War I.  Noyes will read from and speak about his book, Clara D. Noyes, R.N., Life of a Global Nursing Leader on Thursday, February 1, 2018, at 6:00 p.m., following a meet-the-author reception beginning at 5:30 p.m. at the National Register-listed University Club of Albany, 141 Washington Avenue at Dove Street. 

Clara D. Noyes is the author’s great-great aunt. The author came to Clara Noyes’s story after inheriting her desk, which inspired him to tell her story. “Without exaggeration, Clara Noyes’s life touched virtually every major question concerning the development of nursing as a profession in the first quarter of the twentieth century, with specific impact on the history of wartime nursing,” Roger Noyes says. 

As Clara Noyes once quipped to an Associated Press reporter about her disaster-relief work at the American Red Cross, “All I do is press a button and things happen.” She was a woman who deployed unusual power and authority in a strictly gender-defined social and professional culture.  
The book explores how nursing – and, specifically, nursing within the structure of relief organizations like the Red Cross – provided one of the few avenues for women to hold influential executive positions in early twentieth century America. “My aim in this book is to show how the women-led American Red Cross Nursing Service enrolled, deployed and demobilized wartime nurses in a structure that paralleled – and was virtually indistinct from – the larger War Department effort to supply American troops during the First World War," Roger Noyes adds. "Oftentimes these structures stood in conflict, but the War Department’s need for a mass mobilization of professional nurses, all of them women, also provided leverage for the advancement of women’s causes, and many of these causes intersected with the nurse professionalization movements.”
The book’s publication coincides with this week's 100th anniversary of the U.S. entrance into World War I (April 6), detailing events that occurred exactly one century ago. 
It tells of Clara Noyes’s education as one of the first generation of professional nurses trained on the Florence Nightingale system, her rise through the ranks of nursing, and her eventual leadership at the American Red Cross Nursing Service where she worked to prepare and deploy nurses for service during World War I in Europe. 
While wartime nursing is a central aspect of the book, the author also examines Clara Noyes’s work deploying Red Cross nurses to the Mississippi Flood of 1927 (one of the largest natural disasters in U.S. history), the Influenza Epidemic of 1918, and her political activism, alongside President Taft, to promote legislation granting Army rank to nurses. Her work also overlapped with the suffrage movement and other advocacy wins on behalf of women that were achieved in large part from her perch as an early President of the American Nurses Association (ANA). The ANA was, at that time, the largest professional organization of women. Clara Noyes was also chair of the Women’s Joint Congressional Committee, which was once regarded as “the most powerful lobby in Washington.” 
Clara Noyes also founded the first not-for-profit school for midwives in the United States, published extensively on nursing issues of the day and worked in the post-war period to oversee nursing relief activities in Europe and to develop schools of Nursing in France, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia and Poland. 

What the Critics are Saying:

 “Roger Noyes writes a compelling biography about one of the leading nurses in the American Red Cross during the early part of the twentieth century,” says Pace University nursing historian Sandra Beth Lewenson, RN, EdD, FAAN, author of Taking Charge: Nursing, Suffrage, and Feminism in America, 1873-1920. “He contextualizes her life’s work within the framework of a world grappling with issues of woman suffrage, class, race, and gender disparities, and a world at war. Roger Noyes weaves a rich historical narrative illuminating Clara D. Noyes’ development as a person, a professional, and a global citizen.”

University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing Professor Patricia D’Antonio, PhD, RN, FAAN adds: “Clara Noyes led nurses to battle during World War I, to scenes of disaster during the flu pandemic and floods, and to the successful recognition of their military authority in the fight to gain officer status. More importantly, Roger Noyes has written a biography of a woman who wielded power and authority at a moment in time when few did.  This biography deserves a wide read both by nurses and by those who seek to understand women’s leadership in a very public life.”
About the Author: 

Roger L. Noyes is Communications Director for the Home Care Association of New York State, an organization that represents many of the state’s Visiting Nurse Associations and other home care providers. He is frequently quoted on state health care issues, and his writing has appeared in many of the state’s major newspapers and in trade publications. He lives in Slingerlands, New York.  

Where to get the Book:

The book is now available on amazon.combarnesandnoble.com and other sites, and will be available for sale at the event.

The Event:

 This event is presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, Inc. and one need not be a member of the University Club to attend.  Attendees are welcome to stay for dinner in the University Club Grille Room following the event (pay with  cash or credit card).  Call the University Club at 518-463-1151 use the Register Now link below to reserve your seat at the event and for dinner.  Reservations are requested by Wednesday, January 31.  

The University Club of Albany Foundation was formed to recognize and maintain the unique historic and architectural significance of the University Club building and property, its neighborhood and the city of Albany, where it has been located since its inception in 1901.