Friday Q&A with Diana Schunn

If you have not yet had the pleasure of working with Diana Schunn, you should do everything in your power to make it happen. I am fortunate enough to have Diana as a consultant on the Sustainability project and have come to admire her very much. The things I love most about working with Diana are her common sense approach, and her ability to parse through the drama to identify the real issue at hand. I think you'll understand exactly what I mean as you read her Q&A with us this week:

I've been a SANE since: 1993

Hospital or community-based program? Hospital based - Via Christi Regional Medical Center in Wichita, KS. Currently serve as their SANE/SART Specialist after being the Director for 15 years. My full time job is the Executive Director of the Child Advocacy Center of Sedgwick County, which is a developing CAC.

I'm a SANE because: being a forensic nurse is an exciting, rewarding and challenging opportunity that really makes a difference in people's lives

The best advice someone ever gave me was: that credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.

A skill every SANE should have is: teamwork -- being flexible and willing to compromise but never at a patient's expense.

A skill every program coordinator should have is: the ability to make every team member feel valued while sharing the common goal of "what is best for the patient"

More money or more staff? More staff-- quality staff that are interested in being awesome nurses making a difference in the lives of patients who have experienced violence.

I wish someone had told me when I was first starting out: not every mom wants what is best for her children. With that being said, just because a mom doesn't initially believe, doesn't mean she won't with some education and time. After all, most moms don't want to believe their child is a victim of abuse (much like we would want to deny that a loved one has cancer)

My most indispensable resource is: my group of colleagues that are willing to share their wisdom, with no strings attached (surround yourself with people who are smarter than you!)

My strong suit is: oh, boy... the ability to see the big picture and not get lost in the smoke screen that some people offer

I would rather eat glass than: have a pedicure

I take care of myself by: spending time with my family and friends and watching Nebraska Football - GO BIG RED

It will be time to do something else when: I think I have learned everything there is to know.

In 10 years I would like to be: able to see what a positive impact the CAC in Wichita has made for the children affected by violence and to be one generation closer to ending violence

Words of advice for a struggling SANE program coordinator?
Perseverance, faith and the ability to find peers to give you support. It is worth the sacrifice. Stay true to "nursing"-- it will guide you whenever there is a hard decision to make.