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Why I’m Here

The Temp Who Never Left: Jean Stansbury’s 40 years of Service to Gillette

Pediatric nurse practitioner, Jean Stansbury, APRN.

Pediatric nurse practitioner, Jean Stansbury, APRN.

Pediatric nurse practitioner, Jean Stansbury, APRN, has cared for some of Gillette Children’s most fragile patients for 40 years and counting. She has the distinction of being the nurse practitioner at Gillette who has the longest tenure. 

Stansbury works mostly in the outpatient rehabilitation unit. Her passion for helping children and families facing health concerns is unwavering and personal.

“My twin sister, Jill, and I were born 7 weeks early, and the doctors at St. Paul’s old Miller Hospital first told my mother that they were doubtful we would survive—let alone thrive,” Stansbury recalls. “Back then the survival rate for premature twin babies was low.”

Stansbury’s mother had an unshakeable faith that her girls would thrive. Thankfully, that’s exactly what happened.

The temp who never left

Stansbury has a passion to care for babies with complex medical conditions and reflects that this might be connected to her own experience.

Stansbury earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, MN. Her first job took her to the Newborn Intensive Care Unit at the University of Minnesota in 1980.

In October 1983 Stansbury was asked to work part time at Gillette to cover for a nurse who was out on maternity leave.

“For a while I worked at both the U of M and Gillette,” Stansbury says with a smile, “Because I was not sure the Gillette job would last!”

Stansbury jokes that she’s the temp who never left! “I’ve always said Gillette was not the first place I worked but I hope to continue working here until I retire. That means, hopefully, this will be the last place I work.”

"It's my privilege to work here."

Stansbury says her focus is to help families. “We can’t always fix things for our patients and families but maybe we can make things easier.”

Stansbury takes pride in being a team player and working with other talented Gillette staff to come up with solutions to patient problems.

“It’s my privilege to work here,” she says. “I learn so much from our families and have made wonderful connections with my coworkers.”

This strong connection can be seen in the support Stansbury receives during her recent treatment for cancer. “I welcome the chance to acknowledge all their help,” Stansbury says. “I want to let everyone know how much I appreciate it.”