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Board of Directors

The American Nurses Association (ANA) is dedicated to serving all 4 million registered nurses and harnessing their expertise, knowledge, and wisdom to protect, improve, and promote better public health and health care for all.

Consisting of four officers and five directors-at-large, the board is elected by the ANA Membership Assembly and accountable to the members of ANA. Its duties – fully defined in Article IV, Section 3 of the ANA bylaws – include oversight of corporate responsibility and fiduciary duties, strategic leadership, and the implementation of policies established by the ANA Membership Assembly.

Loressa Cole

DNP, MBA, RN, FACHE, NEA-BC, FAAN

ANA Enterprise CEO

An accomplished health care leader who has more than 30 years of nursing and management experience, Dr. Loressa Cole became the ANCC Executive Director and Executive Vice President in 2016, and was appointed ANA Enterprise CEO in 2018.

An accomplished health care leader who has more than 30 years of nursing and management experience, Dr. Loressa Cole, DNP, MBA, RN, FACHE, NEA-BC, FAAN, became the ANCC Executive Director and Executive Vice President in 2016. Dr. Cole was appointed as the ANA Enterprise CEO in 2018.

Most recently, she served as the Chief Nursing Executive for Lewis Gale Regional Health System in Salem, Virginia, where she directed system-wide clinical operations, partnering with other C-suite leaders on strategic and tactical planning, and execution.

Previously, she served as Chief Nursing Officer at Lewis Gale Montgomery Hospital in Blacksburg, Virginia, where she led the hospital to achieve its initial Magnet® designation in 2009 and its redesignation in 2013. Dr. Cole began her career as a staff nurse in medical/surgical and critical care settings.

Active in many professional organizations, Dr. Cole served as President of the Virginia Nurses Association from 2012 until 2014. She is a member of the American Organization of Nurse Executives, the Virginia Organization of Nurse Executives, and the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE).

She has presented at a wide range of conferences, including the 2011 and 2012 ANCC National Magnet Conference. She earned her DNP at Case Western Reserve University, her Master's in Business Administration (MBA) at Averett University, and her BSN at Virginia Commonwealth University. She is ANCC board-certified as a nurse executive, advanced, and is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Ernest J. Grant

PhD, RN, FAAN

President

A former nurse of the year award winner, Dr. Grant is the first man to be elected to the office of ANA president. Thanks to his world-class expertise in burns-related treatment and fire safety issues, Dr. Grant is a leading educator in this field and has lent this experience to various branches of the U.S. military as well as civilian fields.

Dr. Ernest J. Grant is the 36th president of the American Nurses Association (ANA), the nation’s largest nurses organization representing the interests of the nation’s 4 million registered nurses.

A distinguished leader, Dr. Grant has more than 30 years of nursing experience and is an internationally recognized burn-care and fire-safety expert. He previously served as the burn outreach coordinator for the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center at University of North Carolina (UNC) Hospitals in Chapel Hill. In this role, Grant oversaw burn education for physicians, nurses, and other allied health care personnel and ran the center’s nationally acclaimed burn prevention program, which promotes safety and works to reduce burn-related injuries through public education and the legislative process. Grant also serves as adjunct faculty for the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Nursing, where he works with undergraduate and graduate nursing students in the classroom and clinical settings.

Grant is frequently sought out for his expertise as a clinician and educator. In addition to being a prolific speaker, he has conducted numerous burn-education courses with various branches of the U.S. military in preparation for troops’ deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2002, President George W. Bush presented Grant with a Nurse of the Year Award for his work treating burn victims from the World Trade Center site. In 2013, Grant received the B.T. Fowler Lifetime Achievement Award from the North Carolina Fire and Life Safety Education Council for making a difference in preventing the devastating effects of fire and burn injuries and deaths within the state.

An active participant in professional organizations, Grant is a past chair of the National Fire Protection Association board of directors and served as second vice president of the American Burn Association board of trustees. He also holds membership in Sigma Theta Tau and Chi Eta Phi. Grant served as president of the North Carolina Nurses Association from 2009-11. In 2002, ANA honored Grant with the Honorary Nursing Practice Award for his contributions to the advancement of nursing practice through strength of character, commitment, and competence.

Grant holds a BSN degree from North Carolina Central University and MSN and PhD degrees from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He was inducted as a fellow into the American Academy of Nursing in 2014. He is the first man to be elected to the office of president of the American Nurses Association.

 

Susan Y. Swart

EdD, MS, RN, CAE

Vice President

Dr. Susan Swart,  EdD, MS, RN, CAE is currently the Chief Executive Officer/President of SYS Consulting Solutions, Inc. Dr. Swart also serves as the Executive Director of ANA-Illinois, Illinois Society for Advanced Practice Nursing and the Illinois Nurses Foundation.

Dr. Susan Swart,  EdD, MS, RN, CAE is currently the Chief Executive Officer/President of SYS Consulting Solutions, Inc. Dr. Swart also serves as the Executive Director of ANA-Illinois, Illinois Society for Advanced Practice Nursing and the Illinois Nurses Foundation.

It is her life’s mission to foster nurse empowerment. Dr. Swart expertise is in issues related to the scope of practice, ethics, nursing regulation, and public policy development. She is a sought-after speaker and is known for her coalition-building skills, innovative leadership approaches, organizational growth strategies, and partnerships to advance organizational missions.
Dr. Swart earned her BSN degree from the University of St. Francis and her MS in the Acute Care Nurse Practitioner program from the University of Illinois. Recenty, she received her doctorate degree (EdD) from Olivet Nazarene University with an emphasis on ethical leadership. 

Jeffrey N. Doucette

DNP, RN, NEA-BC, FACHE, FAAN

Secretary

As Press Ganey’s Chief Nursing Officer, Jeffrey Doucette is responsible for providing clinical guidance to help clients transform the patient and caregiver experience.

As Press Ganey’s Chief Nursing Officer, Jeffrey Doucette is responsible for providing clinical guidance to help clients transform the patient and caregiver experience. In this role, he works to develop nursing leadership at client organizations, improve quality and efficiency, and improve employee and caregiver engagement by playing an integral role in the company’s workforce initiatives.

Jeff is a widely recognized and accomplished nurse leader with nearly 30 years of experience spent largely in leadership and executive nursing roles. Throughout his career, he has focused on enabling the delivery of exceptional patient and family experiences through innovation, education, and nursing excellence.

Most recently, Jeff served as senior vice president and chief nursing officer at Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals in Philadelphia. In this role, he led the strategic direction and leadership of the Division of Nursing and Patient Care Services and played a critical role in cultivating and sustaining nursing excellence. Prior to joining Jefferson Health, Jeff served as president of the Magnet Recognition Program® and the Pathway to Excellence Program® at the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

Known as an engaging thought leader and dynamic presenter, Jeff speaks extensively around the world on topics of interest to nursing and health care leaders. He is a Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellow, a Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, and a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing. He also serves on the editorial advisory board for Nursing Management and The Journal of Nursing Administration.

Jeff earned a master of science degree in health care administration and a bachelor of science degree in nursing from Marymount University, and a doctor of nursing practice degree from Old Dominion University.

Jennifer S. Mensik Kennedy

PhD, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN

Treasurer

Jennifer S. Mensik Kennedy, PhD, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN, is currently the division director of care management at Oregon Health and Science University in Portland Oregon and an instructor for Arizona State University College of Nursing and Health Innovation.

Jennifer S. Mensik Kennedy, PhD, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FAAN, is currently the division director of care management at Oregon Health and Science University in Portland Oregon and an instructor for Arizona State University College of Nursing and Health Innovation. Mensik Kennedy is a sought-after presenter and prolific author. Her books include Lead, Drive, and Thrive in the System and The Nurse Managers Guide to Innovative Staffing. She co-authored A Nurse’s Step-By-Step Guide to Transitioning to the Professional Nurse Role and The Power of Ten (Second Edition) and contributed a chapter to the book The Career Handoff: A Healthcare Leader’s Guide to Knowledge & Wisdom Transfer across Generations.

 

Mensik Kennedy has held numerous high-profile leadership positions within the nursing profession. She served as president of the Arizona Nurses Association 2007-2010. Nationally, Mensik Kennedy has served as both second vice president and director-at-large on the American Nurses Association board of directors. Additionally, she held the role of governor of nursing practice for the Western Institute of Nursing in 2010-2014.

 

Mensik Kennedy earned a PhD from the University of Arizona College of Nursing with a focus on health systems and a minor in public administration from the Eller College of Management. Mensik Kennedy's MBA degree is from the University of Phoenix, while her BSN degree is from Washington State University. She also holds an ADN degree from Wenatchee Valley College-North. Mensik Kennedy was inducted as a fellow to the American Academy of Nursing in 2014.

Amanda Buechel

BSN, RN

Director-at-Large, Staff Nurse

Amanda Buechel currently practices on the surgical trauma intensive care unit at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, IL.

Amanda Buechel currently practices on the surgical trauma intensive care unit at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, IL. In 2017, she was named by the Illinois Nurses Foundation as one of its “40 under 40” Emerging Nurse Leaders and as a Pinnacle Nurse Leader for her outstanding contributions to nursing. Buechel leverages her passion for public policy and advocacy by speaking to nurses and nursing students throughout the state about the importance of nurses’ participation in political advocacy.

 

Buechel has a long history of board service. She served as both first vice president and as elected executive consultant of the Student Nurses Association of Illinois (SNAI). Since 2016, Buechel has acted as the ANA-Illinois-appointed co-consultant to the SNAI Board of Directors. She continues to work with SNAI to develop future nurse leaders. Buechel served on the ANA-Illinois board of directors from June 2016 to November 2017.


Buechel earned her BSN degree from the University of St. Francis, Joliet in 2015.

Jennifer Gil

MSN, RN

Director-at-Large

Jennifer Gil, MSN, RN currently practices at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, PA as a clinical nurse in their Level-1 Trauma Emergency Department.

Jennifer Gil, MSN, RN currently practices at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, located in Philadelphia, PA as a clinical nurse in their Level-1 Trauma Emergency Department.

Jennifer’s long-standing commitment to leadership began as an undergraduate student at Villanova University where she earned her BSN from the M. Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing in 2013. She was recognized as a Connelly-Delouvrier International Scholar, travelling to Peru and South Africa to provide nursing care to underserved populations. During this time, Jennifer also served on the Student Nurses’ Association of Pennsylvania Board of Directors from 2011 to 2013. After completing the Hausman Fellowship Program for Minority Student Nurses at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in 2012, Jennifer moved to Boston and worked as a critical care and medical-surgical charge nurse at MGH. 
While in Boston, Jennifer was elected to serve on the American Nurses Association of Massachusetts Board of Directors from 2014-2019. She was an active member on their health policy committee and remained committed to the professional development of direct care nurses and their involvement influencing healthcare, safe staffing, and health policy.

In 2019, Jennifer was elected to serve on the American Nurses Association Board of Directors representing the voice of direct care nurses. In 2020, she served on ANA’s Political Action Committee and remains engaged in numerous state and national boards. Most recently, she was elected to serve as President-Elect for the National Association of Hispanic Nurses in Philadelphia, PA and is Chair of NAHN’s national nominating committee.

Jennifer recently earned her MSN in the Health Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and obtained a certificate in Healthcare Innovation from Perelman School of Medicine.

Jennifer is also a member of the New Jersey State Nurses Association, Sigma Theta Tau International, Emergency Nurses Association, and serves on the national advisory board for the Nurses Service Organization.

Marcus Henderson

MSN, RN

Director-at-Large, Recent Graduate

Marcus Henderson, MSN, RN currently practices as a psychiatric and mental health nurse on the child and adolescent unit at Fairmount Behavioral Health System in Philadelphia, PA. In his role as charge nurse, Marcus manages a 36-bed inpatient unit and works closely with the nursing staff and multidisciplinary team to ensure safe, comprehensive patient care.

Marcus Henderson, MSN,, RN currently practices as a psychiatric and mental health nurse on the child and adolescent unit at Fairmount Behavioral Health System in Philadelphia, PA. In his role as charge nurse, Marcus manages a 36-bed inpatient unit and works closely with the nursing staff and multidisciplinary team to ensure safe, comprehensive patient care.

Previously, Marcus served as the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Up and Running Healthcare Solutions LLC, a Philadelphia-based organization that provided nurse-led case management by community health workers and other supportive services to homeless individuals in partnership with the Bethesda Project. This work was funded by the 2017 President’s Engagement Prize and Office of Nursing Research at the University of Pennsylvania. He has presented his work on homeless health and community health workers at local, state, and national conferences.

In addition, Marcus teaches at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing as a Clinical Instructor and Community Site Preceptor for undergraduate and graduate students in courses that serve as community engagement experiences to help students understand the complexities of community health, engagement, and the impact of social determinants of health.

Marcus began his leadership journey as an undergraduate student when he was elected to the Student Nurses’ Association of Pennsylvania (SNAP) Board of Directors. He served on the SNAP Board from 2013-2017 and as President from 2015-2017. In 2016, Marcus was elected to the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA) Board of Directors as Ex-Officio Director and Chair of the Council of State Presidents.

Marcus continues to serve on many local, state, and national boards and committees for nursing, healthcare, education, and non-profit organizations. In 2019, Marcus was appointed to the Committee on the Future of Nursing 2020-2030 at the National Academy of Medicine.

Marcus received his MSN in Health Leadership at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing with a certificate in Healthcare Innovation from the Perelman School of Medicine. Marcus received his BSN from Penn Nursing in 2017 with a minor in History, Health, and the Humanities from the Barbara Bates Center for the Study of the History of Nursing.

Marcus is a member of the Pennsylvania State Nurses Association, American Psychiatric Nurses Association, and American Public Health Association.

Brienne Sandow

MSN, RN, NEA-BC

Director-at-Large

Brienne Sandow, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, is the Director of the Enterprise Resource and Staffing Center of Excellence at St. Luke’s Health System in Idaho.

Brienne Sandow, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, is the Director of the Enterprise Resource and Staffing Center of Excellence at St. Luke’s Health System in Idaho. Sandow joined the St. Luke’s team in 2002. In her current role, Sandow uses evidence based best practice to develop staffing and scheduling strategy for volume driven departments throughout the health care system. St. Luke’s is a five-time ANCC Magnet designee.

Sandow earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Bachelor of Science in Family and Consumer Sciences from the University of Idaho, a BSN from Boise State University, and an MSN in Patient Care Services Administration from Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut. She is ANCC certified in Nurse Executive Advanced.

Sandow has been fortunate to be engaged with ANA at the national level for the past several years. In her previous roles as President and President-Elect of ANA Idaho, Sandow attended and participated in several ANA meetings and events.  She has served terms on both the ANA Congress on Nursing Practice and Economics and on the ANA Nominations and Elections Committee.

Sandow is committed to the forward growth and continued success of ANA. She is especially focused on recruiting and retaining new members, developing, and implementing strategies that keep ANA relevant to nurses throughout their careers and fostering nurse leaders, both locally and nationally. 

Jeff Watson

DNP, RN, NEA-BC

Director-at-Large

Jeff Watson, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, is the Department Chair and Associate Dean for Nursing Leadership Studies at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Nursing in Lubbock, Texas. As a faculty member, Jeff facilitates learning for graduate students in the nursing informatics and nursing administration specialty curriculums.

Jeff Watson, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, is the Department Chair and Associate Dean for Nursing Leadership Studies at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Nursing in Lubbock, Texas.  As a faculty member, Jeff facilitates learning for graduate students in the nursing informatics and nursing administration specialty curriculums.

Watson is a proponent of both the written and oral traditions of storytelling to engage the health care community in valuing our shared humanity. He is also a contributing author to the seventh edition of Leading and Managing in Nursing, a widely used undergraduate nursing text.   

Watson’s community volunteer efforts are through his local church and faith community.  He is a tireless advocate for social justice, specifically activities targeting the elimination of needless human suffering.  He has been active in the Texas Nurses Association since becoming a registered nurse, serving in progressive roles of responsibility, most recently as president of the association.

Watson earned a certificate in Vocation Nursing from South Plains College, a diploma in Professional Nursing from the Covenant School of Nursing, a BSN degree from Lubbock Christian University, and his MSN degree in Nursing Administration and DNP in Executive Leadership, both from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Nursing.  He also earned a diploma in Practical Theology from Christ for the Nations Institute.  He holds board certification as a Nurse Executive, Advanced through the American Nurses Credentialing Center.  He is a member into the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, as well as Sigma Theta Tau International – Iota Mu Chapter.

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