Marty Nason began her career in 1967 as a pediatric nurse at UCLA Medical Center where she worked just long enough to save money to travel in Europe. After working as a nurse for a year in Switzerland, she returned to pediatric nursing at UCLA and was recruited to be on a team of nurses to start the first UCLA critical care/coronary care unit. Nason taught nursing in several RN programs in the Los Aneles Community College System, and was the in-service instructor for psychiatry/mental health at the Veterans Administration Medical Center Sepulveda.
Nason became an advocate for families facing cesarean childbirth, and co-authored Cesarean Birth, A Couple’s Guide to Decision and Preparation which was published twice; developed a curriculum and taught cesarean childbirth classes; and pioneered having a father present for cesarean delivery.
In 1986, Nason received her Master in Nursing degree at UCLA, and became a Certified Clinical Nurse Specialist in psychiatric/mental health with a focus on consultation/liaison and counseling individuals, couples and families with acute and chronic illness. This led her to the Cancer Support Community (CSC), an international non-profit organization that provides professional programs of emotional support, education and hope for people affected by cancer and their loved ones. As co-founder and Vice-President of Programs for the CSC, Nason devoted the last thirty years of her life to helping people with cancer replace fear with hope. In recognition of her work, Nason received a Lifetime Achievement award from the Cancer Support Community Valley/Ventura/Santa Barbara in 2013.
Ten years ago, Nason was diagnosed with early stage Parkinson’s Disease. To practice her own wellness, she chose to retire in 2013 from the vice president position. But her heart and mind are still at CSC. Now she gets to do the “fun stuff” such as facilitating three support groups a week.
Nason is grateful for her UCLA nursing education epitomized by a daring, pioneering spirit and forward-thinking leadership. She learned through the accomplishments of her mentors that anything is possible.