Sarah L. Szanton, PhD, ANP, FAAN, was inducted June 18 as Endowed Professor in Health Equity and Social Justice, the second endowed chair christened by the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing in 2018.
“I have received immeasurable support from the university, my colleagues across divisions and schools, and my family and friends to make this opportunity possible,” says Szanton, director of the Center for Innovative Care in Aging. “My passion is to drive equity in aging so that all can live to their fullest capacity. I’m excited to expand the possibilities in research and policy through this new professorship.”
The chair was established and funded by Class of 1966 alumna and Nursing Advisory Board member Susan Epstein, JD, with a request to have it named in honor of Dean Patricia Davidson, PhD, MEd, RN, FAAN, for her deep commitment to health equity and social justice. In accordance with university policy, the chair will become the Patricia M. Davidson Health Equity and Social Justice Chair upon completion of Davidson’s tenure as dean.
“This is a well-deserved tribute to Dean Davidson and a true reflection of her work that has prioritized health and well-being for all,” says Epstein. “I’m also excited to see Dr. Szanton step into this role and bring the school forward in an area that is so critical to nursing and today’s health care environment.”
Szanton’s care of homebound, low-income elderly patients in Baltimore led her to develop the Community Aging in Place Advancing Better Living for Elders (CAPABLE) program. By combining home visits from a nurse, occupational therapist, and handyman, CAPABLE helps older adults live more safely and comfortably longer in their own homes. It has been expanded to 22 cities in 11 states and to Australia.
Szanton has earned the American Academy of Nursing Edgerunner Award, Baltimore City Health Equity Leadership Award, and Senior Service America Research Award and was named a National Influencer in Aging by Next Avenue.