Evelyn Parrish

Dr. Evelyn Parrish, 59, passed away peacefully at home on September 28, 2022 from cancer. She is survived by her wife, Joan Austin, her mother, Sue Ann Parrish, her brother, John Parrish and his wife Gale, and many aunts and cousins. She is also survived by her dear friend, Dr. Karen Butler, and many other friends who enjoyed Evelyn’s life with her, helped care for her, and were with her at the time of her passing. She was predeceased by her father, Bobby.

Evelyn received her BSN from Eastern Kentucky University and her MSN and PhD from the University of Kentucky. She earned a post-master’s certificate as a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner-Family from Rush University. She has been a nurse for more than 25 years, and a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner for the past 19 years. Evelyn began her teaching career at Eastern Kentucky University in 2006 and joined the faculty at the UK College of Nursing in 2016 as an Associate Professor and Assistant Dean of Accreditation and Strategic Outcomes. She served as the Medical Director and practiced at Access Wellness Group in Lexington. Evelyn was the past-president of the International Society of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing and Editor in Chief of Perspectives in Psychiatric Care: The Journal of Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nurses. She was a prolific author and highly sought-after speaker at professional conferences.

Evelyn’s career was dedicated to service, not only to her patients and her students, but also to Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing. Her contributions were recognized with many awards and honors over the years. Most notably, she was inducted as a Fellow in the American Association of Nurse Practitioners and named Outstanding Alumnus of the UK College of Nursing. In 2021, she was named the American Psychiatric Nurse Association Psychiatric Nurse of the Year, the specialty’s highest honor.

Evelyn enjoyed traveling through life with Joan and their friends, tending to her yard and gardens, cooking on her Big Green Egg as well as in the kitchen, spending time at Sanibel Island, reading, playing with electronics, organizing her yard sales, golfing, and driving around the Bluegrass. She liked diving into new experiences like fly fishing. She loved life, had a ready smile, a kind heart, and filled whatever space she was in with love and laughter.

A celebration of her life will be held at Clark Legacy Center in Brannon Crossing on November 12, 2022 at 1PM. With a gathering of family and friends to follow until 3PM. 

Contributions are suggested to the Dr. Evelyn Parrish Memorial Fund at the University of Kentucky College of Nursing.