The occupational health and nursing community mourns the loss of an important champion earlier this year: Shelly Jones, PhD, BSN, COHN-S, FAAOHN. Dr. Jones was Professor Emeritus at OHSU School of nursing, and a longtime fixture with the Oregon State Association of Occupational Health Nurses (OSAOHN) most recently serving as Secretary and Past President.
OSAOHN shared in a recent notice: “Shelley saw the occupational health nurses’ professional association as the key to providing the leadership needed to develop, expand, and solidify the nurse’s role in business and to be the network of support and encouragement for nurses.” Shelley touched so many lives, consistently advocating on behalf of health, safety and wellness for all workers. I was fortunate to first meet Shelley almost two decades ago when, new to OHSU, she asked me to teach the industrial hygiene section of a review course for occupational health nurses. She followed up my session with several pertinent and detailed questions, ensuring that the attendees received what she felt critically important information. More recently, over the past several years our Institute partnered through Shelley with OSAOHN on our spring symposia addressing workplace aggression, and in recognizing Total Worker Health. Shelley continually worked to recruit people into the field of occupational health nursing.
Tributes from others
“Shelly was also one of my instructors at OHSU while in nursing school and was responsible for me switching my career track from Medical Surgical Nursing to Occupational Health Nursing. (She arranged for me to do part of my Community Health Rotation working with an Occupational Health Nurse and that is when I knew I wanted to work with employers for employee health and safety.) I also had the privilege of working alongside her when I was a member of OAOHN. I’m grateful to have known her. She was great educator, leader, and had a huge impact on nursing in our area.”
Randy Emert, Occupational Health Nurse and OSAOHN member
“As part of her Occupational Health and Environmental course, Shelley often invited me to teach a session to student nurses about occupational health nursing. It was a wonderful opportunity to see how Shelley engaged her students. She really allowed them to see all the avenues they could explore as they prepared to embark on their career as nurses. This of course included passionately encouraging them to consider opportunities in community and public health with a holistic focus on worker safety, health and wellness. Shelley contributed so much to occupational health nursing throughout her career and helped inspire the next generation of nurses to protect the health of workers and communities. I will miss her dearly.”
Lynda Enos, RN, MS, COHN-S, CPE, HumanFit, LLC
Condolences or memories can be sent to OSAOHN Secretary, Linda Meuleveld. Linda reminds us that Shelley was a vital, soft spoken force, but fierce and determined in her commitment to her family and occupational health. She will be greatly missed, but her legacy lives on.