ANNA Member Spotlight

Welcome to ANNA's monthly member spotlight. ANNA is a vibrant organization because of nurses like you! Your diverse experiences and unique perspectives make us a collective whole that is a masterpiece. We are proud of all the work each of you do.

If you would like to be featured, try using our online community, ANNA Connected. Members are featured in the Member Spotlight based on their engagement in ANNA Connected, so start connecting, talking, and getting to know other ANNA members via ANNA Connected.

Laura Cato, BSN, RN, CNN

Grand Prairie, TX
Dallas Chapter #208

How long have you been in nursing?

I have been an RN for more than 45 years.

How long have you been in nephrology?

I practiced in nephrology for more than 30 years. I recently retired, but I am looking forward to continuing my membership in ANNA and serving as both a mentor and resource to other nephrology nurses.

Why do you love nephrology?

I love nephrology nursing because of the vast variety of career opportunities available. It is truly a career for a lifetime. During my career, I transitioned from active clinical and direct patient care to education. My most recent position offered the best of both worlds. I was able to train and support those new to the nephrology specialty and also work with staff and patients on methods to improve patient care and promote optimal outcomes.

What is your favorite ANNA member benefit?

ANNA Connected is one of my favorite member benefits. The opportunity to exchange ideas with peers and experts from across the country is amazing. It greatly enhances my personal goal of lifelong learning. I also shared the ideas I learned from discussions in ANNA Connected with my students and coworkers.

ANNA offers the best benefits per dollar in relationship to membership costs of any organization with which I have been involved. The ability to receive up-to-date professional information on my phone, tablet, or computer is a real plus. I also enjoy the ability to complete the monthly free CE offerings on my smartphone.

Do you have a favorite patient story?

One of my favorite patient stories involved a patient and family who approached me in the grocery store to relate how much they appreciated the care I had provided for their mother. During her treatment, I had taken the time to talk with her about growing flowers, knitting patterns, and sharing recipes. It only took a few minutes, and it made her treatment time pass more quickly and more pleasantly. I smiled and gratefully thanked the family for letting me know. That is what I have always tried to do when providing patient care — to care for the patient the way I would want my family or myself cared for. That is why we nephrology nurses roll out at the wee hours of the morning, put on a smile, and work our days. This attitude has — and continues to — serve me well. I had the opportunity to pass this passion for great patient care on to a new generation of staff. Nephrology nursing is not just a job; it's a great privilege to serve others.

What are your favorite hobbies outside of nursing?

My second love after nursing is design, graphic arts, and needlecraft. Knitting baby afghans (for gifts) keeps me out of trouble.