Searcher Spotlight: Nancy Hoffman

One SAR member offers a unique presentation at the academy that few – if any – other SAR members would be as qualified to give. When it comes to legal ramifications of the rescue portion of SAR, Nancy Hoffman has the credentials to shed light on such things as the HIPAA Privacy Rule and the Good Samaritan laws. As a registered nurse AND an attorney AND an assistant professor, she has a good understanding of such things.

Nancy grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and Oak Ridge, Tenn. She attended nursing school in Cincinnati and completed her bachelor’s degree at Holy Names in Oakland. As a Navy Nurse Corps officer stationed in the Philippines, she provided medical services to the U.S. Marines, serving 21 years as both active and reserve, and then was recalled for Desert Storm.

Adding to her skills as a nurse, Nancy obtained her law degree from Golden Gate University and now works as an assistant professor and coordinator of Health Sciences at CSU Eastbay while maintaining a small legal practice in healthcare law, risk management and estate planning.

But while that surely means for a busy life, it wasn’t enough. Maintaining that it is one's responsibility to contribute to the welfare of the community, Nancy chose to be involved with SAR, believing her skill sets to be applicable.

Nancy joined CoCoSAR in 2010. One particular point has stood out to her in her almost-three years as a SAR member: “As I learned in the Navy, teamwork is everything,” she says.

Nancy lives in Brentwood with Connie, her longtime partner. She thrives on spending time with her daughter’s two children. She also loves hiking in the woods and gets her musical fix by playing rhythm guitar and singing in a small band.

Not long ago, she was late to a family get-together and her grandson, Jace, greeted her by asking if she had been out with SAR. When she said she had, Jace said, “Bella (Nancy’s granddaughter) told me you were doing search and rescue. She said if a little boy gets lost, his parents can call you and your friends and you will go find him and bring him home so no one is sad.” 

Then he announced that he wanted to do that when he grows up.  

“That encounter seemed to sum up SAR,” Nancy says. “Service to community and a good example of community involvement for future generations.”