Nancy Harper, MD, FAAP

The Ray E. Helfer Society Recognizes Dr. Nancy Harper for Outstanding Teaching

Nancy HarperNomination Letter for Nancy Harper, MD, FAAP

It is an honor and a pleasure to nominate Nancy S. Harper for the Ray Helfer Society Teaching award. I first met Nancy in San Francisco at an American Academy of Pediatrics Meeting when she was Carole Jenny’s child abuse fellow. I had invited Carole to join me and my son (then a medical student) for dinner at PlumpJack a popular eatery. She brought Nancy along. From that moment on, I realized that Nancy was an unstoppable force.

Nancy is a naturally born teacher. Early in her career she received the Pediatric Teaching Award at the Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth, Virginia, two years in a row, both in 1998 and 1999.

In 2016, Nancy became the Program Director of the Child Abuse Pediatrics Fellowship Program at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis MN. Her first fellow successfully graduated and became the Director of a Child Abuse Center in North Dakota.

Nancy was recently awarded $30,000 to improve training for sexual assault nurses entitled “Train to Retain: SANE Expansion in the Upper Midwest.”

Nancy has been invited to teach regionally, nationally, and internationally (Sweden, the Netherlands, Austria, Bolivia) on very diverse child maltreatment topics. Even her presentation titles arouse interest: “M is for Murder and Munchausen’s,” “You Bruise, You Lose,” and “Skinny Jeans or Stupidity: Starvation, Torture & Scapegoating.”

She has numerous peer review publications, has edited chapters and books, and serves as a peer reviewer for Pediatrics, Child Abuse & Neglect, Academic Pediatrics, Journal of Pediatrics and The Quarterly Update. She also serves as a National Expert Peer Reviewer for both My QI portal, the American Board of Pediatrics Maintenance of Certification Part IV, and My Case Review for the Midwest Regional Child Advocacy Center.

Over the years, Nancy has mentored many pediatricians, residents, and medical students and has developed various child abuse curricula for medical education. She served six years as the SOCAN Program Chair and in 2016 was awarded for Outstanding Service in Education Excellence by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The SOCAN Program was superb at the annual conference, no doubt due to Nancy’s leadership. Nancy is now serving on the AAP National Conference & Exhibition planning committee. She always has been invested in improving educational opportunities on child maltreatment both nationally and internationally.

I have personally co-presented with Nancy and had the pleasure to see many of her numerous regional and national presentations. Her dry wit and amazing intellect is always appreciated by her audience. And especially by me. In our field fraught with vicarious trauma, a little humor goes a long way.

Debra Esernio-Jenssen, MD