Brent MacWilliams, PhD, MSN, RN, APNP, ANP-BC

Brent MacWilliams PhD, MSN, RN, APNP, ANP-BC June 9, 2019

Place of Employment: University of Wisconsin- Oshkosh College of Nursing

Which Nursing Organizations are you currently a member of: National Nurses on Boards Coalition, American Association for Men in Nursing Foundation, American Association for Men in Nursing

Board(s) currently serving on: Nurses on Boards Coalition (Treasurer), American Association for Men in Nursing Foundation (President), American Association for Men in Nursing (Immediate Past President)

Tell us about your journey to the boardroom. What inspired you to seek a leadership position?
I had a business background before becoming a nurse and wanted to make sure the voice of the patient was being heard by the decision makers.

What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader?
I am working as a leader in a variety of roles at the local, state and national levels which provides the growth and education needed to be successful in my board focused leadership role(s).

What impact have you had serving on a board? Example?
At the American Association for Men in Nursing we have our first millennial President. Mentoring and providing leadership opportunities for the next generation of nursing leaders provide our community of interest with a new and more diverse perspective.

What advice would you give someone going into a board leadership position for the first time?
Seek out a mentor who has Board experience and make sure that you are provided with “onboarding”. It is one thing to be on a board but to be effective in the role requires experience and training.

What are a few resources you would recommend to someone looking to gain insight into becoming a better leader and eventually obtaining a board position?
There are a ton of excellent books and sites to review. National Council of Nonprofits has a fun resource and a great way to begin the journey…How to Be a Great Nonprofit Board Member.

Why do you feel it is important for nurses to serve on boards?
Nursing is the most respected profession but that needs to be transformed into being the most valued profession. That transformation can only take place where systemic change is taking place and that is in the Board Room.

What do you think is the most significant barrier to nurses serving on boards?
Having a voice, seeing the financial value in the services they provide and speaking the language of business.

What was your experience like as a dad in leadership?
I have two daughters and was a “stay at home dad” while finishing my PhD.

Children seldom listen to your works but watch to see how you act and observe your behavior. If you are a good person, authentic leader and genuine steward they will eventually follow suit. That said, as a “dad and leader it is often better to be respected than liked”.

- PhD, MSN, RN, APNP, ANP-BC
Boards: Nurses on Boards Coalition (Treasurer), American Association for Men in Nursing Foundation (President), American Association for Men in Nursing (Immediate Past President)
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Nurses on Boards Coalition