Credentials RN, MS Place of Employment Ascension Wisconsin Which Nursing Organizations are you currently a member of? WONE, AONE, AAMN Board(s) currently serving on Ascension Quality, Gold Cross Ambulance Company, Wisconsin Organization of Nurse Executives, Wisconsin Center for Nursing, Appleton Homeless Connections
Tell us about your journey to the boardroom. What inspired you to seek a leadership position? My first Board was on the American Heart Association. I learned that at the Board level I could influence more directly where an organization put its energy to achieve its mission. I also learned skills and communications that aided me in all activities professionally and personally that allow me to better effect change.
What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader? Constant learning through experience, conferences, reading and seminars. Volunteering has also been valuable development for me.
What impact have you had serving on a board? Example? The first one that comes to mind is the work we did at Gold Cross to work with the competition on pre-hospital work that supports the community. More recently and more fulfilling is the influence the approach our Ascension quality prevention work on chronic disease into segments of prevention of the disease, management of the disease and palliative care at the end of the disease process.
What advice would you give someone going into a board leadership position for the first time? Ask questions, ask for orientation and learn the mission of the organization and its primary deliverable. Participate!
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? Join a professional organization as a member and get involved.
Why do you feel it is important for nurses to serve on boards? Nurses are naturally trained to align knowledge, outside influences and to direct it at the patient. Making it person-centered care. This is a transferable skill set to any organizational mission.
What do you think is the most significant barrier to nurses serving on boards? Internal – Nurse Leaders not engaging External – stereotypes of nurses not driving change.
- RN, MS
Boards: Ascension Quality, Gold Cross Ambulance Company, Wisconsin Organization of Nurse Executives, Wisconsin Center for Nursing, Appleton Homeless Connections
“Board service can be rewarding to nurses both personally and professionally. It not only requires them to exercise leadership; it expands those skills and advances their capabilities and knowledge. It gives nurses the chance to meet people and enhance their professional networks. And it can be inspirational and empowering.” -Sue Hassmiller, PhD, RN, FAAN, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
The Nurses on Boards Coalition (NOBC) represents national nursing and other organizations working to build healthier communities in America by increasing nurses’ presence on corporate, health-related, and other boards, panels, and commissions.