CU Nursing - Spring/Summer 2022 - 5
COL L EG E
shadows and into their potential.
But it's nearing the end of her watch.
Marilyn retired from the University
of Colorado College of Nursing at the
end of February after a lifetime of
fighting for those who couldn't fight
ABOUT MARILYN IN THE WORDS OF
FRIENDS AND CO-WORKERS
What launched her incredible journey?
Ask Marilyn about the source
of her passion, and she'll tell you she
can't recall any particular moment.
Nor did her altruism stem from any
self-interest; she was not the mother
or sibling of someone with intellectual
" I can't remember why I was always interested
in helping children with special
needs and complex medical issues.
I just had the knowledge about it and
an exposure in my degree (post-master's
certificate handicapped children
and families) and there was a need to
help. So, I did, " said Dr. Krajicek, CU
THE FIRST, FIRST START
Today, the 81-year-old is a renowned
national and international expert of
children with intellectual and developmental
disabilities. From 1968
until 1985, Marilyn signed on to work
with JFK Partners at the University
of Colorado Anschutz Medical
Campus. JFK Partners is designated
as Colorado's University Center
of Excellence in Developmental
Disabilities and Leadership Education
in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities
Program. The center leads the way
in evidence-based interdisciplinary
clinical care, education, research and
community partnerships to enrich the
lives of children, youth, and adults
with intellectual/developmental disabilities
and special health care needs.
Marilyn was a perfect fit.
" I listened to the physicians who told
me to 'build a great team, surround
Continued on page 6
From Dr. Kristine Gauthier - I first met Marilyn as
a PhD student at CU in 2010. Given our shared
backgrounds, I was introduced to her and she served
as my PhD advisor. I was hired as faculty in 2014
and continued to partner with Marilyn as a colleague,
co-instructor and through various faculty roles. I started
working with her and the NRC in 2021.
Marilyn has a way of getting answers and isn't afraid to
ruffle a few feathers along the way. She won't hesitate to pick up the phone
rather then send an email, will walk into an office to start a discussion, and will
get parties connected to start a conversation. I will miss her daily rounds on the
floor of the college where she pops into offices to get her questions answered
and visit with staff and faculty.
I will miss her network of connections - she knows someone for everything. I
will also miss her dedication to children's health, safety, and wellbeing. She truly
is a champion for children.
" Marilyn, Thank you for your support and guidance over the years. You have
climbed the mountain, now enjoy the view! Also, may I please have your full
title and credentials? "
-Kristine Gauthier, PhD, MPH, PNP-PCBC incoming director for the NRC
From Dr. Gerri Steinke - Marilyn's career was dedicated to improving the quality
of life of children, especially young children in out-of-home care and children
with disabilities and chronic health conditions. She developed the First Start
curriculum, a train-the-trainer model to prepare child care programs to safely
care for children with special health care needs. She trained successive cohorts
of nurses and graduate nurses to better serve this group of children by earning
successive federal grants for pediatric nursing leadership in special needs.
Marilyn was the program director for one of the first dual-degree programs
in the nation for DNP-MPH education of advanced practice nursing. She
collaborated with Kathy Shaw, Scott Harpin, retiree Marilyn Stember and Lori
Crane to launch the program.
Perhaps the signature, lasting achievement of her career was as director of
the NRC from 1995-2021. We also maintained a national database of child care
licensing regulation which soon became the gold standard for providers. Finally,
during Marilyn's tenure as NRC director, we were asked to support the Obama
era effort to prevent obesity.
" Marilyn, don't stop making trouble! The consequences typically
benefit everyone. "
-Gerri Steinke, PhD, NRC evaluator, CU College of Nursing research associate, LEND and
UCEDD evaluator, JFK Partners, senior clinical instructor, CU SOM
Continued on next page
CU Nursing - Spring/Summer 2022
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CU Nursing - Spring/Summer 2022
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