Ep 122: How Goldie Brangman, CRNA, Broke Barriers Throughout Her Life

Goldie Brangman, CRNA, might be known best for becoming the AANA’s first African-American president, but there’s so much more to know about her life and career. Today we wanted to celebrate everything she accomplished, including helping save Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s life, and we do so with the help of Nancy Bruton-Maree, CRNA, and Sandy Ouellette, CRNA.

Click the timestamps below to help you navigate through the many topics we discussed.

On This Episode:

When you think back over the years and look at the many barriers that have been broken down in our industry, you’ll surely come across the name Goldie Brangman.

Born in 1917, Brangman accomplished so much before she even became the AANA’s first African-American president in 1973. We’ll do our best to try and provide as much information and insight into her life and career today on the podcast. One hour certainly won’t do her justice, but we’ll highlight many of her achievements on the show.

To help us do this, we’ve brought in our resident historians, Nancy Bruton-Maree, CRNA, and Sandy Ouellette, CRNA, who also served as AANA presidents. Their first-hand experience and perspective is always a joy to hear so we hope you enjoy this installment of our historical series.

So as you get started on the episode, keep an ear out for these topics:

  • Her education and work in Harlem, NY
  • The many barriers that she faced in anesthesia
  • How she established the Harlem Hospital Nurse Anesthesia Program
  • The work she did with the NY ANA
  • The different positions she held with the AANA
  • A long list of accomplishments as president of the AANA
  • The incredible story of how she helped save Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s life.
  • The list of awards and honors she earned
  • Life in retirement and how she continued to serve in Hawaii

Check it out the interview at the top of the page and use the timestamps to help you navigate through the many topics we discussed.

1:21 – Talking about Goldie Brangman

2:12 – Her education and early life

5:52 – The barriers she faced

8:23 – Her days as as student

9:56 – Establishing Harlem Hospital School of Anesthesia

14:00 – Male vs Female

16:27 – Henry Kelly

18:32 – Service to state and national associations

22:02 – Her accomplishments as president

30:36 – Focus on communication

35:01 – How she helped save Martin Luther King Jr’s life

47:25 – How she spent retirement in Hawaii

49:17 – Awards and honors


“I remember Goldie as being an extremely smart woman, but she also was one of the nicest people I think I’ve ever been around. She had a great business mind. She was highly, highly thought of.”

-Nancy Bruton-Maree, CRNA





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J. Cross CRNA
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This podcast is very well put together. I love the hosts Sharon & Jeremy, they do a fantastic job at presenting topics as well as getting great speakers on the show! This is my morning commute podcast everyday! Thank you for all that you do!
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I started listening to this podcast religiously early on in my CRNA journey, a year before applying to CRNA school. The content in this podcast was one of my most helpful resources for getting into my first choice school, Wake Forest! It has also been a huge motivator for getting involved with the AANA now and throughout my career. I highly recommend this podcast to every prospective CRNA I meet.
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I appreciate hearing the latest and greatest in the world of Nurse Anesthesiology while also getting Class B credits. Just listen on your commute for a win/win experience. I love the perspectives from Jeremy and Sharon who both ask varied and insightful questions!
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If you’re a CRNA or any medical professional, I highly recommend giving this podcast a listen. Hosts have a great rapport.