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STTI announces US $500,000 bequest from former Northwestern University chair of nursing education

Julie J. Adams
The Honor Society of Nursing,
Sigma Theta Tau International     
Direct Line: +1.317.917.4944 (International)
Toll-Free: 888.634.7575 (U.S./Canada)
STTI announces US $500,000 bequest from former Northwestern University chair of nursing education
Sigma Theta Tau International Foundation for Nursing establishes the
Dr. Martha Pitel Permanent Fund
INDIANAPOLIS — The Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) and the Sigma Theta Tau International Foundation for Nursing announced today the receipt of a US $500,000 bequest from Northwestern University Professor Emerita and former Chair of Nursing Martha Pitel, PhD, RN. According to Dr. Pitel’s wishes, the gift has been designated as the Dr. Martha Pitel Permanent Fund — a permanent, unrestricted fund for the honor society.
“This incredibly generous gift memorializes Dr. Pitel’s dedication to the profession of nursing and nursing education,” said STTI President Hester C. Klopper, PhD, MBA, RN, RM, FANSA. “Dr. Pitel’s bequest will help inspire and encourage future nurse leaders and researchers for generations to come.”
About Dr. Martha Pitel
Dr. Martha Pitel died on 19 April 2014 in Cook County Ill., USA, after an extended illness. Born in 1921 in Binghamton, New York, USA, she served as a U.S. Army nurse during World War II, received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing from Case Western Reserve University, and earned a doctorate in anatomy and physiology from the University of Minnesota. Her more than 30-year academic career included faculty positions at Syracuse University, the Yale University School of Nursing and Medicine, the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, the University of Kansas, the University of Illinois at Chicago, and Northwestern University.
An STTI member since 1974, Dr. Pitel was a progressive leader in nursing education. At the American Nurses Association Ninth Nursing Research Conference in 1973, she advocated for evidence-based research and theory development as the primary educational foundation for the professional practice of nursing — a position still at the forefront of nursing education today. Dr. Pitel’s long history of leadership within the nursing profession inspired many to complete doctoral studies, to develop research, and to become nurse educators. View Dr. Pitel’s complete obituary here:
A memorial service commemorating the life of Dr. Martha Pitel will be held Tuesday, 21 October 2014 at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing.
For more information on the Sigma Theta Tau International Foundation for Nursing, please visit the STTI website at
The Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is advancing world health and celebrating nursing excellence in scholarship, leadership, and service. Founded in 1922, STTI has more than 135,000 active members in more than 85 countries. Members include practicing nurses, instructors, researchers, policymakers, entrepreneurs and others. STTI’s roughly 500 chapters are located at approximately 695 institutions of higher education throughout Armenia, Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, England, Ghana, Hong Kong, Japan, Kenya, Lebanon, Malawi, Mexico, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Portugal, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Swaziland, Sweden, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, the United States, and Wales. More information about STTI can be found online at

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