ABC7: Working Woman - Lesley Daigle Changes Careers to Nursing at VHC
This week’s Working Woman decided at age 40 to change her life.
She was a successful lawyer with young children, but she wanted a new career.
Now, after going back to school and starting over, she's found her purpose helping, and healing others
When she turned 40, Lesley Daigle seemed to have it all. A practicing attorney for 12 years in commercial real estate, and a young family.
But something was missing.
“Did I want to end my career, my working life, doing this? And the answer was no. That's not all I had in me.”
After much soul searching, Daigle realized it was her calling to start over, as a nurse.
“Knowing that at the end of the day or end of the week you have really made a difference in someone’s life and you can totally turn around a situation just by your intervention.”
Perhaps it was inevitable. Daigle's grandmother and mother were both nurses.
After going back to nursing school, she knew exactly where she wanted to work. Daigle is now Assistant Patient Care Director at the outpatient clinic at Virginia Hospital Center. A place very familiar to her.
“I had both of my kids at this hospital, I was a patient here, my physicians were here, I had many tests here, ER visits here as any parent does and every time I came into the walls of this facility I was taken care of.”
Fluent in Spanish, Daigle is helping Arlington's low income and uninsured patients at that clinic. It's rewarding work, after taking a courageous leap of faith.
“I would say to any woman, it's okay that we don't make the perfect decision for ourselves now when we're 18 and decide where to go to college and what graduate career we'll follow. You can change it and make a difference.”
Daigle is also the chair for the hospital's Nursing Research and Performance Improvement Council, helping put the nurse's ideas into action.