Katherine J. Hoffman, PhD, MN, RN, fondly referred to as Katie, was instrumental in the early efforts for developing nursing research. The first nurse in Washington State to receive a Ph.D., (in 1956) Dr. Hoffman was a member of the ANA Committee for Nursing Studies who’s work led to the 1958 ANA House of Delegates asserting that research was the number one priority of the profession of nursing at that time.
Dr. Hoffman was honored with emeritus status in 1984 as one of the founders of the Western Council for Higher Education in Nursing (WCHEN). She was an active member of the WCHEN Graduate Seminar that gave leadership to what was to become the Communicating Nursing Research Conferences. She was a contributor to the development of, and was an active participant in, the original nursing research conferences spearheaded by WCHEN. In addition, she was a Charter Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing, and she helped to formulate the goals and objectives for the Academy.
As Assistant Dean at the University of Washington School of Nursing, she with Dean Mary Tschudin obtained one of the first funded Faculty Research Development federal grants (1959). In 1964, Dr. Hoffman became director of one of the first Nurse Scientist grants that supported nurses studying toward a Ph.D. Her generosity, willingness to listen and ability to give wise counsel have been recognized by many awards and special presentations throughout her career. Yet, as her associate Dr. Crowley said, “I guess her highest honor is that everyone loves her so much.”
Katherine Hoffman was admired by all who worked with her for her wisdom, her intellect, and her vision. She will always be remembered for her warmth and her concern for and belief in others. By holding to consistently high standards of scholarship, she helped to prepare a large number of nurse scholars who have contributed to nursing’s knowledge