Honoring a Loved One With a Gift
For Don Stallard, M.D., establishing a scholarship at Missouri Western seemed like a great way to honor his wife, Loah, so he recently made a gift to the Missouri Western Foundation to create the Loah Stallard Graduate Nursing Scholarship.
Loah was the Executive Director of the Social Welfare Board from 1979 to 2006, and since 2006, has been a Health Educator there.
"I am very honored; I didn't expect it," she says of the scholarship. "And I am glad it is going to help the nursing program at Missouri Western." She notes that the University's two graduate-degree tracks (nurse educator and health care leadership) address critical needs right now.
Loah graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Iowa. She met Don there, who was completing his residency at the University of Iowa Hospitals. Loah stayed home to raise their four children before joining the Social Welfare Board in 1979. She returned to graduate school shortly after she was hired by the Social Welfare Board and earned a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Kansas. She later earned a second master's degree in public administration with an emphasis in health care from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
Under Loah's guidance, the Social Welfare Board added dental services, gynecological services, a dietitian, crisis counseling, cardiovascular screening, arthritis services and a diabetic food program. She was one of the first to recognize the importance of using nurses with master's degrees to provide the care in ambulatory clinics, especially in underserved and rural areas. "People are so appreciative, you are making a change in their lives," she says of her work at the Social Welfare Board.
Throughout her career, Loah also served on numerous community and state organizations' boards, including the Missouri Western Foundation Board for 12 years. She received the YWCA's Women of Excellence Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007.
Don, who practiced internal medicine in St. Joseph for 35 years, says it was important to him that the scholarship be endowed so it would continue into the future. He and Loah also wanted to make it for graduate-level students to ensure that the recipients were committed to the nursing field long-term. Students from Buchanan County who are interested in working with underserved and under-insured populations will be given preference.
Don says he wants to encourage others to donate to the scholarship in Loah's honor. To learn how, or to learn about different ways you can support Missouri Western, contact Kim Weddle at email@example.com or 816-271-5648.