Nurse worked in the middle of the North Pacific Ocean

LaFonda “Fonda” Lillard was once a traveling nurse working in Hawaii and Baltimore. Now she serves patients at IU Health Coleman Center for Women.

People who know her would be surprised to learn that LaFonda “Fonda” Lillard once went snorkeling in the North Pacific Ocean. She’s afraid of water. For three months she served as a traveling nurse in Hawaii. She also had a stint in Baltimore working as a clinical nurse. But the bulk of her career has been with labor and delivery.

She recently joined the team at Coleman Center for Women at IU Health University Hospital where she works with new and expectant moms, along with female patients with other health needs.

Lillard grew up in Ft. Wayne and graduated from the former Paul Harding High School. She is the oldest of three girls – including a sister that is 14 years younger. Lillard said she was shy in high school but excelled in science.

“My middle sister said I fulfill the role of big sister well,” said Lillard. “I’m very nurturing and I think nursing came naturally.” She obtained her nursing degree from Ball State University, worked in med/surg. for three years and then jumped right into labor and delivery.

“I wanted to work with patients one-on-one and with labor and delivery you are working with patients who are well. You are a bridge for them during this important stage of their lives,” said Lillard.

What advice would she like to give to every new mom? “Their time with their baby is their time and how they want to spend that is up to them. They’ll get a lot of advice from family but that time is up to them.”

What advice would she like to give to every woman? “Take good care of your body.”

More about Lillard:

  • She has a 12-year-old Golden retriever named “Nala” who weighs 80 pounds but thinks she’s a 10-pound lap dog.
  • She loves spending time with family and friends.
  • She enjoys working on crafts and makes homemade gifts.
  • She loves watching super hero movies especially those based on DC and Marvel comics.

— By T.J. Banes, Journalist, IU Health. 
   Reach Banes via email