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Davis retires from DWM after 42 years

Autherine Davis has retired from D.W. McMillan Hospital after 42 years of service, but she is still working “to help out.” Her work has become a big part of her life and it’s not so easy to just walk away.
Davis was born and raised in Brewton and graduated from T.R. Miller in 1974.
“I have always loved people and after spending a year at Jefferson Davis Junior College, I transferred to Ed Reid in Evergreen in 1976,” she said. “That was back when there was a bus going to school in Evergreen. We parked our cars in a shopping center here in Brewton and caught the bus to go to school at Ed Reid.”
At that time she was in an LPN school and she said she really enjoyed working with all the different people she came in contact with.
“Mrs. Rene Hill was the director of nurses and was training Cathy Smith to take her place at the time I was in LPN training,” Davis said. “Those were the days when there a lot more LPNs than there were RNs. This was back in the day when nurses wore white uniforms with the little white caps.”
Davis took her clinical at D.W. McMillan and was hired as a nursing assistant while she was in school. She graduated in 1977 and due to the shortage of RNs, she and her fellow LPNs served as charge nurses. She continued her nursing school at Jefferson Davis Community College and graduated as a Registered Nurse in 1980. She got her education in working in Human Resources and was promoted to education and served as HR director.
She has never let anything come between her and her pursuit of making a difference in people’s lives.
“I would like to work with young women who have low self esteem,” she said. “I would also like to get into Brewton politics and be a part of the more positive changes in our community. The youth are the key and I would base my work around the youth to give them a reason to stay in Brewton.
“The reason I have worked and stayed at the hospital is because I love people and see the good in them,” she added. “Healthcare is going through some changes but the one constant is that the word care should always be a part of what we do. God gives all of us gifts and talents and for me, that was to love people and when He gives a gift, what you do with it is your gift back to God.”
Davis said she is very thankful to have the opportunity to do all she has, but said the credit belongs to her patients, families, co-workers, physicians and other nurses to have made it this far.
“My life is faith based and it has made it easy for me to come to work,” she said. “I thank the community for always being so supportive to me.”