By Iris T. Smith, MSW, LCSW-C
UMMC Clinical Social Worker
Editor’s Note: Jean Tucker Mann (right), a long-time UMMC social worker who was a pioneer in her field, has been selected by The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) , to receive its 2010 National Lifetime Achievement Award today (April 28) at the Annual Leadership Meeting at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Washington, DC.
Mann has worked for 35 years in the public and nonprofit sectors, most recently as director of social work and human services at University of Maryland Medical Center. She retired from UMMC in 2005 after leading a multidisciplinary effort that established the Palliative Care Program for patients with life-altering or terminal illness.
In recognition of her leadership and accomplishments at UMMC, “The Jean Tucker Mann Award” was established in her honor to recognize those who make a difference in the way Jean did for so many years.
Below, Iris T. Smith, one of Jean’s former co-workers and a UMMC clinical social worker, shares her thoughts about Jean and what makes her so special.
It is with a great deal of pride and affection that I write a few words about Jean Tucker Mann and her accomplishments while she was director of social work and human services at the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Jean was a dynamic leader who communicated with all. Her door was always open and staff felt comfortable in stopping by her office to discuss a variety of subjects. I feel that Jean was a special leader because of her commitment to excellence and her ability to take on new tasks, like establishing the Palliative Care Program at UMMC, and her work as founding member of UMMC’s Diversity Council. She used a situation that I had confronted and dealt with in regards to race to illustrate the need to the administration for a Diversity Council.
Jean nominated me for the Gold Award, the highest employee award given by UMMC, because of the professional way I handled the situation, which reflected the medical center’s mission, vision and values. Thanks to Jean, I received this award in 2004. Jean was an advocate for all.
Finally, Jean’s legacy and impact will live on through the programs she established and for the manner she was able to engage all levels of staff. She was a role model and encouraged all to work at a high level. She was warm, caring, inspirational and able to engage all around her on tasks that needed to be accomplished. Jean was special, which is why she was so loved.