Profiles of Bravery

Brig. Gen. Hazel Johnson-Brown

1979: First black chief of the Army Corps and first black female brigadier general

Command Sergeant Major Hollis

Johnson-Brown was an operating room nurse, who graduated from the Harlem Hospital School of Nursing and joined the U.S. Army in 1955. She thought it would be an opportunity that would allow her to explore the world and hone her nursing skills. She had no idea she would become a part of military history. Timing had much to do with Johnson-Brown's success in the military, as she entered the Army shortly after President Harry Truman banned segregation and discrimination in the armed services. Following her retirement, Johnson-Brown enjoyed a distinguished second career in academia. She served as professor of nursing at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and finally at George Mason University in Virginia. At George Mason University, she was instrumental in founding the Center for Health Policy, designed to educate and involve nurses in health policy and policy design. Johnson-Brown retired from teaching in 1997.

Army Nurse Corps Chief Broke Racial Barriers (Defense Health Agency) Go back to profiles