by Drew Woodruff, Victory High School Advanced Placement Student
It’s typical for people to let life pass them by. Many look back and regret not making an impact in the world, but in Mildred Kahane’s life this is not the case.
Mildred, known to her friends and family as Millie, is a successful, professional nurse. One of her great successes was working with Congressman, Robert Matsui, to help people nationwide get hospice care. Many of her accomplishments were “a matter of opportunities, being at the right place at the right time, and learning to take risks in life,” said Millie. She taught at Sacramento State University and is also on the advisory board at Adelphi University in New York, where she grew up. As a retired teacher, the success of her students was very important to her. Growing up in a poor family with two brothers and one sister, she made an early decision to pursue a career and became the first of her family to go to college. She was even appointed by Ronald Reagan to the California Nursing Board.
Throughout her career, Mildred met her husband who was an intern at the county hospital where she worked. They traveled all over the world together. They drove through Italy, cruised the Nordic States, took safaris in Africa, and Millie even road tripped with fellow nurses across the US. She took advantage of yet another opportunity to become one of the first school nurses, after statehood in the city of Anchorage. With the experiences of travel, Millie encourages others to do the same, saying: “Discipline yourself to travel, see the world… Don’t let goals get lost.”
Although she started out with humble beginnings, Millie became a successful woman. At 88 years old she reflects, “I’ve done mostly what I’ve wanted to. Good family, fantastic husband. I took advantages of opportunities along the way.”