Passionate and driven, Ellen Stoesser Byrd spent nearly five decades as a nurse before retiring in 2013. Her journey began at Baylor University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in nursing in 1964. That year, she also became a registered nurse in the state of Texas and started her first job, nurse at Parkland Hospital in Dallas. She moved to the Baylor University Medical Center as a gynecological nurse a year later, after which she garnered experience in positions like charge nurse in medicine and surgery at Collin Memorial Hospital, nurse in the Newborn Nursery at St. Paul Hospital, private duty nurse in District 4 of the Texas Nurse Association, school nurse at the Dallas Independent School District, and school nurse, campus nurse, and director of health services at Dallas Baptist University. Her final position in the field was school nurse at the Independent School District.
In recognition of her professional excellence, Ms. Byrd was honored with the Good Samaritan Award and the Ruth Award from Dallas Baptist University and with the W.T. White Meritorious Services Award from the Baylor University Alumni Association. She was also named a Woman of Distinction by Baylor University and featured in numerous editions of Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare, Who’s Who in the World, and Who’s Who of American Women. Ms. Byrd is most proud, however, of the establishment of The Ellen Stoesser Byrd Endowed Scholarship Fund in Nursing by Baylor University in 2013. The award is given every year.
When Ms. Byrd has free time, she enjoys water aerobics and gardening. She is also very active in her community. She has been an advisor to the Baylor University Woman’s Council since 1995 and a member of the Dean’s Board of the Baylor University School of Nursing since 1994. In the past, Ms. Byrd served as a trustee of Dallas Baptist University, a member of the board of visitors of Forest Divinity School, the vice president of the DeSoto Service League, president of the Dallas CPAs Wives Club, the chairman of the Dallas County Heritage Society, and a deacon of Cliff Temple Baptist Church. She shared her experiences through publications like “History of Dallas CPA Wives,” “Biography of Mae Stoesser,” and “Byrd Family 25 Years.”