Nurses are an essential part of the healthcare industry. Nurse educators, too, are a significant part of the cycle that maintains strong health care providers. Becoming a leader in the nursing profession takes years of practice and education. Nonetheless, outstanding nurses undoubtedly improve healthcare and make the world a healthier and happier place.
If you are thinking about becoming a nurse or nurse educator, reading the biographies of successful professionals will be inspiring. While it was hard to select just a handful of amazing healthcare workers, these eight outstanding nurses are changing the health industry for the better.
Outstanding Nurse: Sharon Chalmers, Ph.D., FNP-BC
Dr. Sharon Chalmers works at the University of North Georgia as the head of the Nursing Department and as a professor. She is a registered nurse and also holds advanced practice certifications as a family nurse practitioner from the Georgia Board of Nursing.
She started her education at DeKalb Community College and obtained an A.S. in nursing. Later, she went on to earn an M.S.N. from Emory University and a Ph.D. in nursing from Georgia State University.The list of her professional presentations and publications is long, and her focus in research includes diabetes, substance use/abuse, and women's health.
Her professional experience is extensive. Chalmers worked at the Pediatric Clinic at Gwinnett in Georgia in 1992 as a nurse practitioner but received an invitation to become an assistant professor at the Brenau University in Gainesville in 2000. Ten years later, she moved to North Georgia College & State University as an associate professor. In 2010, she took on her current tenure.
Additionally, Chalmers is an avid volunteer nurse practitioner at the Good Samaritan Health in Lawrenceville. She is also a member of several professional organizations. These include the Southern Nursing Research Society, the Georgia Association of Nursing Education, and the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. Moreover, she is the treasurer of the Tau Psi chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International, an organization dedicated to leadership in nursing.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Sharon Chalmers.
Nurse Educator Expert: Teddie M. Potter, Ph.D., RN, FAAN
Dr. Teddie Potter is a clinical professor and the Director of Diversity and Inclusivity at the School of Nursing at the University of Minnesota. In the latter role, she is dedicated to assisting diverse students to enroll and succeed in the schools of nursing. Moreover, her academic focus is on diversity and equity, partnership and collaboration, and interdisciplinary education. Her additional research interests include interdisciplinary teaching and health care based on partnership, as well as collaborative online learning on an international scale.
Starting her career as a nurse educator and expert, she obtained her B.S.N. from St. Olaf College. She later earned an M.S. in Nursing Higher Education from the University of Minnesota. In 2010, she received her Ph.D. from the California Institute of Integral Studies.
Although Potter has authored numerous presentations and publications, her most notable piece is Transforming Interprofessional Partnerships: A New Framework for Partnership-based Health Care and Nursing, co-authored with R. Eisler. The 2014 publication won many accolades. It took second place as the American Journal of Nursing Book of the Year the Capstone International Book Award in 2015. Potter herself received the Graduate Student Advising Award at her university shortly after the publication's release.
Beyond her work as a professor, Potter is a member of the American Academy of Nursing and Sigma Theta Tau International. She is also the editor of the Interdisciplinary Journal of Partnership Studies.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Teddie M. Potter.
Outstanding Nurse: Kathaleen C. Bloom, Ph.D., CNM
Dr. Kathaleen Bloom teaches at the Brooks College of Health at the University of North Florida in the department of nursing. She holds a slew of certifications, notably including a certificate of nurse-midwifery. Her areas of expertise include women’s health, evidence-based practice, and adult education. With more than three decades of experience in women’s health, her curriculum includes graduate and undergraduate courses in women’s health.
Bloom has a long academic background. She began with a nursing diploma from the University of Alabama Hospitals and Clinics School of Nursing. Later, she obtained her B.S.N. from the same institution. Bloom then went on to earn an M.S. in Maternal Child Nursing from the University of Hawaii. After receiving her Post Master’s Certificate in Nurse-Midwifery, she finished her Ph.D. in Nursing at the University of Florida.
Throughout her career, Bloom has authored chapters for numerous books. She has also refereed many presentations and publications. Additionally, Bloom is a member and contributor to the Southern Nursing Research Society and America Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
For her work, Bloom received various recognitions throughout the career. Her collection includes the 2016 Healthcare Heroes Award from the Jacksonville Business Journal and the 2004 Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Award from the UNF.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Kathaleen C. Bloom.
Published Nurse: Mary Ellen Glasgow, Ph.D., RN, ANEF, FAAN
Mary Ellen Glasgow’s is the Dean of the School of Nursing at Duquesne University. She is also a professor of both undergraduate and graduate courses. Throughout her tenure, Glasgow created numerous nursing programs, enhancing Duquesne University’s School of Nursing status in its community.
Her education began at the Gwynedd-Mercy College where she acquired a B.S.N. She then obtained an M.S.N. from Villanova University. In 2002, she completed her Ph.D. at Duquesne. Additionally, Glasgow is a Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Adult Health.
Glasgow is considered an innovator in health and nursing. Her wide array of published papers, research reports, and books showcase her contributions to the field. Much of her research addresses the role of nurse practitioners, advanced nursing practices, and legal issues in the field.
She also has numerous recognitions. Of note, she received the 2018 Nightingale Award of Pennsylvania and 2017 Irish Education 100 honor, which is given to Americans of Irish descent demonstrating educational leadership. She also received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the Gwynedd-Mercy University in 2013.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Mary Ellen Glasgow.
Recognized Nursing Professor: Jill Bormann, Ph.D., RN, FAAN
Dr. Jill Bormann teaches at the Hahn School of Nursing and Health Science at the University of San Diego. Her clinical background as a psychiatric nurse provides her students with a wealth of information when studying under her.
She obtained a bachelor's degree in nursing from Augustana College in Sioux Falls. As her interest in psychology grew, Bormann moved into graduate studies. She went on to acquire an M.S.N. in psychiatric nursing from the University of Texas. Her Ph.D. from Wayne State University in Detroit was in Nursing and Social Psychology.
She started her professional career as a staff nurse but soon became a nursing instructor and supervisor. Borman worked as a clinical nurse specialist at a private practice in San Diego for over a decade before becoming an assistant clinical professor at the School of Medicine at UCSD. She began her current post in 2013. In addition to her tenure, Bormann is a member of the American Nurses Association and International Society of Psychiatric Nursing.
Bormann has worked on numerous research projects as principal and co-investigator. Her notable contributions to nursing science include publications on mantram repetition, the effects of stress on quality of life, and emphasis on well-being. She works within several communities for her research. These include veterans, HIV patients, homeless women, and family caregivers and health care workers. Issues of interest in her work include PTSD, dementia, anger management, spiritual distress, insomnia, and burnout.
According to her personal statement, she focuses her career on testing, developing, and implementing the Mantram Repetition Program, a type of mind-body-spiritually intervention that promotes overall well-being. This program is also recognized by the American Academy as a 2017 “Edge-Runner” for its innovation in the field.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Jill Bormann.
Outstanding Nurse: Jerrilee LaMar, Ph.D., RN, CNE
Dr. Jerrilee LaMar is an associate professor at the University of Evansville. She also serves as the chair at the Dunigan Family School of Nursing. Her curriculum includes nursing research and clinical rotations. She also regularly teaches an overall health and wellness course and is an instructor of basic life support and pediatric advanced life support.
LaMar obtained her B.S.N. from the University of Southern Indiana, her M.S.N. from the University of Evansville, and her Ph.D. from Indiana State University. Additionally, she holds certification from the American Association of the College of Nursing as a Certified Nurse Educator.
In her career, she has authored chapters for several books, including contribution to textbooks like Fundamentals of Nursing and Essentials of Nursing. She also participated in revising study guides for Clinical Nursing Fundamentals Study Guides.
Interestingly, LaMar was also the university’s coordinator on a study jointly sponsored by the National League of Nursing and the American Heart Association. The study aimed to measure CPR skill-retention in nursing students who utilized e-learning sources. Additionally, she is a member of the Faculty Senate and is the advisor to SNAP, the campus' professional student nurse organization.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Jerrilee LaMar.
Recognized Nursing Professor: Yolanda R. Davila, Ph.D., RN
Dr. Yolanda Davila is a professor at the School of Nursing at The University of Texas Medical Branch. She teaches courses a variety of courses, including those in both the M.S.N. and Ph.D. programs. Select titles include Public Health Policy and Theories and Concepts of Nursing. Furthermore, Davila is the Chair for Doctor of Nursing Practioner scholarly projects and Ph.D. dissertations. Beyond her commitments, she serves on the editing board of the Journal of Psychosocial Nursing and Family & Community Health.
She obtained all of her degrees — B.S.N., M.S.N., and Ph.D. — at the Health Science Center of the University of Texas at San Antonio. However, she also earned a professional certificate in online education through the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Of note, she was also a fellow at the Center for Health Promotion at The University of Michigan in Partner Violence Research.
For more than two decades, Davila has been investigating barriers and facilitators to the prevention of intimate partner violence among adult females. Ultimately, her work focuses on how culture influences health behaviors. She writes about this topic regularly for publication. Also, she invests research into health disparities. Her work is well-published throughout notable journals in the field.
Davila's accomplishments have not gone without recognition. Of note, in 2018, she received the Outstanding Teaching Award from the UT System Regents. Also, in 2016, she was a Silver Medalist of the Good Samaritan Foundations’ Excellence in Teaching Award. Her complete list of awards can be found in her biography.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Yolanda R. Davila.
Training Future Nurses: Marita G. Titler, Ph.D., RN, FAAN
Dr. Marita Titler is a professor with the School of Nursing at the University of Michigan. She is a leading expert in evidence-based practice, and her work is acknowledged internationally. Moreover, her scholarship focuses on health services, emphasizing translation science and the effectiveness of outcomes on older adults.
Titler started her academic education at Mt. Mercy College in Iowa where she obtained a B.S. Later, she received an M.A. from the College of Nursing at the University of Iowa. She also earned her Ph.D. from the same institution.
Of note, Titler has educated more than a dozen pre-doctoral trainees, as well as several post-doctoral aspirants. Beyond her commitments at the University of Michigan, she is also a visiting professor at Loyola University and the University of Kentucky. Furthermore, she tailored short courses to share her expertise in evidence-based practice with advanced practice nurses, nurse leaders, and staff nurses.
Her research as a nurse and nurse educator has received both foundation and federal funding. Much of her work is published in well-known journals. Additionally, Titler is a member of several organizations.
With the National Cancer Institute alone, she is an Institutional Review Board Member with Cancer Prevention and Control Central and a Special Expert with the Symptom Management and Health-related Quality of Life Steering Committee. Her other memberships include the National Institute of Health and the National Nursing Practice Network. She is currently the director of the latter organization.
Outstanding Nurse: Read about Marita G. Titler.
Nursing Hall of Fame: Barbara Drew, Ph.D., RN, FAAN
Dr. Barbara Drew is a professor emeritus at the UC San Francisco School of Nursing. Her specialty is in psychological nursing. In 2018, she was inducted into the American Nursing Association Hall of Fame. Her contributions to the field make her a truly outstanding nurse.
Having become a Registered Nurse early in her career, she went on to pursue to graduate degrees. Drew holds both an M.S. and Ph.D. in nursing from UCSF.
The research she worked on throughout her career aimed to expand the information collected through ECG recordings. Ultimately, her goal was to enhance the ability of medical experts to make decisions regarding patient outcomes in both hospital and pre-hospital environments. Drew's primary contribution to the field through this research was in the development of “reduced lead set” monitoring technology. This method allows clinicians to use fewer electrodes while still obtaining a multi-lead ECG reading.
Additionally, her current research is focused on post-heart-transplant care. She leads a pilot study intending to identify how increasing the QT interval in an ECG affect acute cardiac allograft rejection. The technology includes a home device for patients that transmits to her research lab for data analysis. Of note, it is a noninvasive device.
In addition to teaching at UCSF and conducting research in her laboratory, the ECG Monitoring Research Lab in the School of Nursing, Drew earned many awards. She has been recognized by the American Heart Association, National Institute for Nursing Research, National Institute of Health and International Society for Computerized Electrocardiology.
Outstanding Nurse: Read more about Barbara Drew.
Nursing Leadership: Leanne Hunstock, DNP, RN, MBA, NEA-BC
Dr. Leanne Hunstock is the Interim Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer of UC San Francisco Health. With more than 35 years in nursing, her expertise is well-regarded. Moreover, her contributions to the field make her an outstanding nurse.
Hunstock earned her B.S. and M.B.A. degrees from the University of Phoenix. She went onto also obtain an M.A. in education and counseling from Northern Arizona University. Of note, she holds a Doctor of Nursing Practice in Leadership of Healthcare Systems from UC San Francisco.
In her career, Hunstock served in multiple capacities within the nursing field. With a large background in clinical and hospital operations at an executive level, she is a strong leader in the industry. Furthermore, her expertise served her well in various settings, including medical centers and teaching hospitals. Previous to her tenure at UCSF, Hunstock served as a chief operations officer at Scripps Mercy Hospital among other teaching hospitals.
In addition to her work, she is active in professional organizations. Her current devotions include Sigma Theta Tau Honor Society of Nursing, the American College of Healthcare Executives, the Association of California Nurse Leaders and the American Organization of Nurse Executives.
Furthermore, Hunstock implemented care delivery models and strategies that increase the recruitment of staff as well as development for retention. She is also published in quality and operational redesign, financial management and nursing.
Outstanding Nurse: Read more about Leanne Hunstock.