Historical information

The photograph was taken on the stairs at the Royal District Nursing Service (RDNS), Headquarters, 452 St. Kilda Road, Melbourne, after Sister Joanne Wilkinson, Nurse Educator, Sister Pat (Paddy) Rowley, RDNS Principal Nurse Educator, and Miss Norma Bryan, RDNS Deputy Director of Nursing, were awarded Fellowships of the Australian College of Nursing. Their regalia worn as Fellows, was a black gown with the wide trim to the front edges of scarlet satin and the regalia hood of inner white and outer scarlet satin.


The Australian College of Nursing (ACN) describes the award as follows:- "Fellowship of the Australian College of Nursing (ACN) is a prestigious member status awarded to nurses in recognition of significant professional achievement. Fellowship recognizes the experience and contribution of nurse leaders to ACN and the profession."
RDNS senior nursing staff could apply for scholarships to further their education outside of RDNS. Many of their senior trained nurses received postgraduate diplomas from the College of Nursing in Community Health Nursing, Education, and Administration, and several travelled overseas visiting nursing organizations viewing their public health and District nursing systems.

Physical description

Black and white photograph of three Royal District Nursing Service (RDNS) staff members standing on stairs in front of a long stain glass window; left to right - Sister Joanne Wilkinson, Sister Pat (Paddy) Rowley and Miss Norma Bryan. The three members are wearing their black gowns with regalia of light coloured edges and their hood of a white V band with dark band edge. Sister Wilkinson, who has short dark hair, is wearing a grey coloured top under her regalia, and is holding her rolled certificate, with a ribbon and bow, in her right hand and has her left hand on the stair rail. Sister Rowley has short dark hair and is wearing dark rimmed glasses; she has a white top under her regalia and is standing side on towards Sr. Wilkinson with her head turned toward the front. She has her certificate in her right hand with her wrist resting on the stair rail. Miss Bryan, who is smiling, has dark curled hair and is wearing dark rimmed glasses. She is wearing a patterned top under her regalia and has her hands clasped to the front holding her certificate. Part of the stair rail can be seen to her right On the wall between Sister Wilkinson and Sister Rowley are three vertical stain glass windows.

Inscriptions & markings

Photographer stamp. Quote No. KJ 58