2005 Betty Hubbard Award Recipients

2005 Betty Hubbard Award Recipients. The four women in the picture are Noya Woodrich, Judy Mathiowetz, Carol Woolverton, and Sara Mullett.

2005 Betty Hubbard Award Ceremony - from left to right: Noya Woodrich, MCH Advisory Task Force Chair, Judy Mathiowetz, award recipient, Carol Woolverton, Assistant Commissioner, Minnesota Department of Health, and Sara Mullett, award recipient.

Two health professionals received awards for contributions to maternal and child health

Minnesota Assistant Commissioner of Health Carol Woolverton presented the 16th annual Betty Hubbard Maternal and Child Health Leadership Awards to Judy Mathiowetz, New Ulm, and Sara Mullett, Minneapolis. The awards, which recognize leadership and achievements in promoting good health of mothers and children, were presented at the Maternal and Child Health Advisory Task Force meeting on December 2.

The annual awards are presented in two categories: one that recognizes achievements at the community level and one that recognizes accomplishments of statewide significance. Mathiowetz, family health supervisor at Brown County Public Health, received the community award. Mullett, coordinator of student support and health-related services at the Minneapolis Public Schools, received the statewide award.

“The recipients of the 2005 Betty Hubbard Award have demonstrated their commitment to improving the health and well being of Minnesota mothers, children and families," Woolverton said. "This kind of unwavering commitment symbolizes the dedication and leadership that have characterized past award recipients.”

Mathiowetz received the community award for her 22-year commitment as a public health nurse in southwestern Minnesota. As the first family health supervisor in Brown County, Mathiowetz's background in public health nursing, school health, immunizations, teen pregnancy, home visiting and other programs has earned her the respect of staff and community members alike.

Through her innovative leadership, Mathiowetz has worked hard to increase communication and collaboration among staff, clients and programs, and to develop more effective case management methods.  Her efforts have resulted in greater care coordination for clients, and better documentation and reporting to secure reimbursement for services. 

Mathiowetz has worked with Minnesota State University-Mankato Nursing faculty and students to assess risks and assets of families and the outcomes related to public health nursing interventions. This information is used in program planning and for securing outside funding. Mathiowetz’s initiative in writing proposals for March of Dimes grants and the Families First Collaborative grants has resulted in funding for many successful programs and projects that benefit children and families. 

As the first Universal Contact Home Visiting nurse in Brown County, Mathiowetz visited parents of new babies in the county providing information, resources, and Follow Along Program registration.  Through her tireless work, the program has become a success and a welcomed part of having a baby in Brown County.

As a member of the Brown County Interagency Early Intervention Committee, Mathiowetz is a strong advocate for the needs of mothers and their children who may often be found in vulnerable, high-risk categories.

Mullett received the statewide award for her 35-year commitment to improving the lives of women, children and youth.  In her roles as the Teen Parent Program Coordinator, Director of Health Related Services, and, most recently, as Interim Executive Director of Student Support Services for the Minneapolis public schools, Mullett has been a strong leader in implementing effective systems and partnerships to address the complex health and education issues of children in Minneapolis.

As the coordinator for the Teen Pregnancy and Parenting Programs, Mullett initiated Minneapolis Public Schools’ involvement with the Center for Assessment Policy Development in a national initiative to improve the health, social, and educational outcomes for teen parent families. This initiative created a strong foundation of collaborative partners working on implementing best practices that are still solidly in place today.

Mullett restructured the Minneapolis school district’s department of Health Related Services by forging partnerships between the district and community health care organizations and providers; by establishing accountability and outcome measures for evaluating student health and its impact on learning; and by focusing on prevention and early intervention. 

Mullett co-founded the Healthy Learners Board that brought leaders from all health care sectors together to address health issues affecting children in the Minneapolis Public Schools. Under that umbrella, an initiative called “No Shots, No School” was created, which resulted in a significant increase in immunization rates for children entering school.

In addition, the New Families Center is a collaborative effort between the Minneapolis Public Schools and the Children’s Defense Fund. It is key in helping new families to Minneapolis settle successfully in the community and helps assure that children start school with a healthy first step. 

In the role of Interim Executive Director for Student Support Services, Mullett has pulled together a patchwork of departments and has helped them begin to lay the groundwork for working together effectively to address barriers to student academic success. Whether through the Healthy Learners’ Asthma Initiative or through helping obtain mental health services for students, Mullett has worked to incorporate best practices into focused work that helps children and families. 

As Obstetrics Supervisor at the Hennepin County Medical Center, Mullett provided exceptional leadership and guidance with all staff to create new models of care delivery to meet the needs of a large influx of southeast Asian patients with many special pregnancy and cultural needs. She was known for her vision, flexibility, and ways of empowering staff.  

A Certificate of Recognition went to Mary Swanson, School Nurse Organization of Minnesota for her substantial contributions to the care of students with diabetes in the school setting.

The Betty Hubbard Awards have been presented annually since 1990.  They are sponsored by the Minnesota Department of Health and the state Maternal and Child Health Advisory Task Force. They are named in honor of Betty Hubbard, one of the original members of the MCH Task force and a lifelong advocate for the health of mothers and children. 

More information can be found on the Minnesota Department of Health Web site at: www.health.state.mn.us/divs/fh/mchatf/bettyhubbard.html.