Dianne Leighty, LPN

Dianne Leighty, LPN, at Quincy Medical Group (QMG), has always had a heart for nursing. Inspired by her mother’s compassion as a CNA and her faith, she followed her passion, which eventually led her to QMG, where she’s been for 25 years. In honor of Women’s History Month, we spoke with her about her story and her path to becoming a nurse.

“For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to be a nurse,” she shared.

Even in fourth grade, when asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, Leighty wanted to work as a volunteer at the hospital. By high school, despite discouragement from a guidance counselor, she remained committed to her dream.

“He said, ‘Diane, you will never make it in nursing school. Your test scores are not good enough,” Leighty recalled. “This really upset me, knowing all along that is what really wanted to do.”

Leighty decided to pursue other avenues, earning a degree at John Wood Community College, though it wasn’t in the field she was passionate about.

But fate had its own plans. Just before graduation, an encounter with former QMG Ophthalmologist Dr. Karl Stumpf changed everything.

“One week before graduation I took a home care patient to see their eye doctor. In turn, I was told by Dr. Stumpf that he had an opening in his office, and I should apply for it,” she said.

She saw Dr. Stumpf a couple of days later and he asked her if she had applied, and she told him no. However, she had a change of heart and decided to apply. Little did she know, that decision would open the door to a long career at QMG.

After almost nine years in that Eye department, she navigated to a position as a float nurse and eventually to Family Practice alongside Dr. Michael Eling, where she’s been for almost 15 years.

Her message to aspiring nurses is one of encouragement and perseverance: “Pursue your dreams. You have to have a heart for it.”

She added, “When you love what you do, it makes it easy coming to work taking care of your patients. When they are going through something, so are you. Even when your patients are going through things you are not supposed to take it home with you. Sometimes you just can’t help it. That’s what makes you a good nurse, being caring and compassionate to help others in time of need.”

For Leighty, nursing isn’t just a job — it’s a calling to serve others with kindness and empathy, no matter the circumstances.