Meet Ronald Hickman, a FPB nursing professor making history

Ron Hickman, Jr.

“Black History Month compels us to boldly highlight the often overlooked contributions of Black trailblazers in science and society. It prompts us to acknowledge historical oversights, appreciate their profound impact, and create a future where recognizing diverse perspectives is not just essential for scientific innovation but also integral to societal progress.”

As a nurse scientist, Ronald Hickman is the inaugural Ruth M. Anderson Professor and associate dean for research at Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing. He is known for his research focused on technology-based solutions to improve chronic disease self-management and end-of-life care. His research and innovative training programs have received funding from the National Institutes of Health and several foundations, and his impact on nursing has been significant.

Hickman has accomplished many significant achievements that have positively impacted nursing and the university. He holds the distinction of being the first African American man to graduate from the School of Nursing’s PhD program, serve as the associate dean for research, and receive an endowed professorship.

His dedication to mentoring students has earned him the university’s top honor: the J. Bruce Jackson, MD Award and the John S. Diekhoff Award. In 2020, Hickman was named an Emerging Leader in Health and Medicine by the National Academy of Medicine, becoming the second nurse scientist to receive this prestigious distinction.

Hickman has been an integral part of the Case Western Reserve community since his undergraduate years. As a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., he played a critical role in establishing the Black Greek Council, a student group that promotes the representation of historically Black Greek letter fraternities and sororities on campus.

Almost two decades later, Hickman’s efforts paid off, and in May 2023, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., became the first Black Greek letter organization to have a monument installed on campus to acknowledge the presence and contributions of Black men who are members of the fraternity and the campus community.

This article was originally published in the CWRU Daily as part of the Black History Month article, "Meet six Black Case Western Reserve University community members who are making history." Read the full article.