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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


From Encyclopedia Dubuque
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Photo courtesy: Telegraph Herald

CORRIGAN, Mary Rose. Mary Rose Corrigan received her BSN from Mt. Mercy College and her MSN from CLARKE COLLEGE. In 1988 Corrigan, a registered nurse, was listed as the city's health sanitarian with the responsibility of inspecting 235 Dubuque restaurants and taverns. This occupied three-quarters of her time. The rest involved health matters including air complaints, garbage, weed, rat, noise and air complaints and private sewer inspection. In 1987 she conducted 543 inspections, 61 follow-ups, and 16 complaint-related inspections. Since beginning with the city in May, 1985 she had closed an estimated six establishments. (1) By September, 1989 she was listed as the city's public health officer. (2)

Corrigan was involved in the delivery of many public health programs and services, along with initiating many new programs and policies, including a childhood lead poisoning prevention program. Since 2001, she was involved with community emergency preparedness education and planning, including pandemic influenza planning. She served on several community based organization boards and also hosted nursing and public health students for public health experience and internships. (3)

Corrigan's role in the city's health grew in 2006 when the COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF GREATER DUBUQUE began Envision 2010. City manager Michael VAN MILLIGAN formed a board of directors which included Corrigan. The Tri-State Community Health Center was incorporated. This became CRESCENT COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER.

When COVID-19 was first announced, Corrigan maintained it was not a question of "if" but when the disease would reach Dubuque. Her advocacy for health issues in August, 2020 led to her receiving an Advocacy Award from the Crescent Community Health Center. The award, given annually, was presented to individuals who were

                  dedicated community stakeholders, board members, 
                  patients or others who have impacted the work of
                  Crescent and enabled out progress toward fulfilling
                  our vision, quality care for all, resulting in a
                  healthy community.

In 2020, Corrigan had served over ten years as the president of the Crescent Community Health Center board of directors. During this time, the number of patients served rose to more than 8,000 in 2019. (4)

Her role in the response to COVID-19 is found in the entry--PANDEMIC



1. Kirchen, Rich, "Corrigan Customers' Best Friend," Telegraph Herald, Sept. 5, 1988, p. 1

2. Blocker, Sue, "Measles Outbreak Has Yet to Surface in Area," Telegraph Herald, September 18, 1989, p. 1

3. City of Dubuque, Official Website, Online: https://www.cityofdubuque.org/directory.aspx?EID=136\

4. "Crescent Recognizes 4 for Impact on Community Health Care," Telegraph Herald, August 10, 2020, p. 1C