An Alumnae Securing the Health of Soldiers:
Captain Iris Evans
Iris (Randall) Evans is a captain in the United States Army and on any given day, she leads as many as four squadrons of enlisted soldiers. Captain Evans is the go-to person for management, mentorship, and counsel for soldiers under her command, and she began developing these skills while on the Knox College campus.
Captain Evans was an ABLE president and a member of the United Women of Color while a student. She also participated in Gospel Choir and International Club, and she was inducted in Sigma Alpha Iota, an international music fraternity for music.
“Knox College opened my eyes to a whole new world of responsibility not only to myself but to my culture and our way of life,” She shared how being a Knox student guided her career decisions. “The foundation of my identity was developed in the classrooms of Fred Hord, Jessie Dixon, and Mary Crawford. I learned that nothing in life that is worth having is given to you, but it is earned. I have friendships, mentors, and bonds of sisterhood from my time at Knox that will remain strong for life no matter how far we are apart.”
Captain Evans earned the Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry and Black Studies at Knox before completing a Master’s of Science in Nursing with a concentration in Midwifery and Women’s Health from Georgetown University. She then went on to earn the Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner and the Midwifery board certifications.
Securing Health and Wellness
Captain Evans is a reproductive care provider who works to manage the adolescence through menopause health care needs of servicewomen and the family members of active servicemen. She assists with prenatal care, family planning, and assessments. Additionally, she treats common illness and performs routine examinations of her patients, and she is an expert in primary care.
“Overall, I love being able to help people, but especially those who are less fortunate,” Captain Evans explained about her dedication to midwifery. “I believe knowledge is power. If we could take the initiative to empower people with education or knowledge of the safe practices and the real life consequences of unsafe practices, then the statistics among our at-risk populations would definitely improve. I believe a normally unreachable population could be reassuringly reachable depending on the approach. I hope to have the willingness and persistence to develop that approach.”
Perhaps the most life-impacting function of Captain Evan’s career is her role in birthing rooms. She assists in as many as 10 to 15 births during a typical month.
“I am motivated by the happiness I bring my patients and their family.” Captain Evans shared. “I enjoy the feeling of knowing that soldiers overseas trust me to take care of their pregnant wives.”
Serving the Nation
Captain Evans has served in the armed forces for 15 years, six years with the Air Force National Guard and 12 years active duty Army. She was awarded the Meritary Service Medal in 2001 for screening medical personnel for deployment.
Captain Evans was also honored in 2006 with the Army Accommodation Medal at Fort Gordon while deployed in Korea for her work with the urgent care clinic, and the Army Achievement Medal in 2014 for being instrumental in developing a birthing program at Fort Knox, Kentucky. She is a member of the Sigma Theta Tau Nursing Honors Society and a Member of Associated Colleges of Nurse Midwives (ACNM).
In addition to leadership and mentoring in the Army, Captain Evans is a cheerleading and basketball coach. She firmly believes that role models and mentorship are important resources for young adults. She works with Planned Parenthood to provide education and contraceptives for those we need reproductive health education and support.