Ep 172: Remembering the True Leadership of Patrick Downey

In November of 2021, the AANA lost a great man in Patrick Downey. This former president and patriarch of the Diamond Club served as a CRNA for more than 50 years and impacted many lives along the way. It’s fitting that this St. Patrick’s Day episode is a look back at his incredible life and the work he did for nurse anesthesia. 

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

On This Episode:

Many special people have been a part of the AANA through the years and Patrick Downey was one that had a big impact on the organization. Not only was he a former president, but he was a patriarch of the Diamond Club.

When he passed away in November of 2021, it was a big loss for our profession and for the AANA. He worked as a CRNA for more than 50 years and spent countless hours helping push the industry forward. Along the way, he touched so many lives and that’s something we wanted to celebrate on this episode of the podcast.

To help us with this, we’ve invited our show historians, Nancy Bruton-Maree, CRNA, and Sandy Ouellette, CRNA, back to take us through his life and share the memories they have of Patrick. We also have a special montage tribute at the end of the show with voicemails from CRNAs around the country.

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

  • What the AANA Diamond Club is and why Patrick Downey played a key role.
  • The story of his birth in the middle of a May snowstorm.
  • His childhood and upbringing with many siblings.
  • His education and time in the Navy.
  • Why Patrick reminded Sandy of Bill Clinton.
  • Details on his time as AANA president and everything he was involved with.
  • His push for affordable and accessible healthcare.
  • The other goals and challenges he faced.
  • His push for a viable public relations program.
  • The message he had for organized anesthesiology

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.

3:47 – The loss of Patrick Downey in 2021

4:45 – The AANA Diamond Club

8:01 – Role Patrick played in the club 

9:45 – Patrick’s early life

11:50 – Education and marriage

13:56 – Anesthesia highlights 

16:35 – Time as AANA president 

22:23 – Goals and challenges

29:50 – Outreach away from operating room

32:29 – Viable public relations program

34:15 – The money in anesthesia

42:50 – His message to anesthesia

47:27 – His passing in 2021

52:08 – Patrick Downey Montage

 


“Certainly, he’s left a real void in our club and I don’t know that we’ll ever be the same again, and we may even go in different directions in terms of what we might do in the future.”

-Sandy Ouellette, CRNA

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