1. Section Editor(s): Simpson, Kathleen Rice PhD, RNC, CNS-BC, FAAN

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The passing of Margaret Comerford Freda, EdD, RN, CHES, FAAN, in April is a huge loss to perinatal nursing. Dr. Freda was Editor of MCN from 1997 to 2014 and Editor Emerita until her death in April 2015. Her contributions to the journal have been previously described in detail (Freda, 2014; Simpson, 2014). She led the effort to have MCN listed in the Thompson Reuters Citation Reports with an impact factor, an important distinction for scholarly journals. Under her editorship, well-known nurse researchers in maternity and pediatric nursing chose MCN to publish their important contributions to the literature. She was especially kind to new researchers and novice writers. She guided them through the process and was just as thrilled as they were to see their work in print.


Dr. Freda had a special gift for identifying scholars "in the rough" and assisting them to realize their potential. I was one of the lucky ones, those Dr. Freda selected for her guidance, mentorship, and love. Her always on-target and frank advice and thoughtful mentoring was invaluable and without it, I would not have had the multiple opportunities in my career that I have experienced. Most certainly I would not be the Editor-in-Chief of MCN. She was passionate about nursing and encouraged all those she was mentoring to be the best nurse that they could be. This meant advocating for mothers and babies in all ways possible through clinical practice, teaching, research, and dissemination of knowledge. She was adamant about using your gifts and maximizing your potential. She urged those she was mentoring to do important things that make a difference for mothers and babies. I can still hear her words.... "You can do it." "You must do it." "Mothers and babies are counting on you." There were many others she was mentoring. I knew she was generous with her time for helping budding scholars, but I was surprised to learn of the extent of her efforts. I have since met and heard from a number of nurses she had mentored. She discussed some of them with me in detail and urged me to "take them under my wing" in the future. She was a big proponent of paying it forward. Each time I thanked her for helping me, she made me promise to help others in the same way. I'd like to think I have done that and will continue in her honor. She often asked how the nurses I am mentoring are doing and took great delight in hearing about their activities. She even had advice for me about how to help them further. Margaret Comerford Freda was that rare nurse scholar with a big heart and unending generosity, who relished the achievements of others. She sought to advance the profession of nursing through promoting excellence in care for mothers and babies. She accomplished these goals by clinical care in her early days as a labor and delivery nurse and continued as a researcher, professor, and MCN editor. I was privileged to have known her well. She was a wonderful person. She is very much missed here at MCN and beyond.




Freda M. C. (2014). Endings and beginnings. MCN. The American Journal of Maternal Child Nursing, 39(3), 144. doi:10.1097/NMC.0000000000000059 [Context Link]


Simpson K. R. (2014). Acknowledgment and thanks. MCN. The American Journal of Maternal Child Nursing, 39(4), 216-217. doi:10.1097/NMC.0000000000000057 [Context Link]