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Contributing Authors, 3rd Edition

Mastering Precepting, 3rd Edition

Contributing Authors


Larissa Africa, MBA, BSN, RN, FAAN

Larissa Africa is the President & CEO of Versant Healthcare Competency Solutions and is responsible for its strategic and operational leadership. Africa is instrumental in driving Versant’s mission to fundamentally transform healthcare outcomes by developing the workforce’s ability to provide safe, efficient, competency based care. She has spent two decades implementing, managing, and leading strategies to develop nursing organizations. As a pioneer in the transition to practice space, she has led the deployment of a competency-based model that integrates and standardizes nursing workforce development across the healthcare continuum, addressing high-demand areas such as long-term care, home health, and advanced practice nursing. Africa is a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing. She is actively engaged in several committees within the American Organization for Nursing Leadership and is currently serving as the Foundation’s treasurer. She presents at the national and international level, has published on the topic of transition to practice, and is a peer reviewer for several nursing journals.


Lauren A. Arrington, DNP, CNM, FACNM

Lauren Arrington is interested in applying tactics that emerge from social justice movements to achieve equity in perinatal care. She is an Assistant Professor in the Doctor of Nursing Practice Program at Georgetown University School of Nursing, a practicing midwife in Maryland, and has experience as a maternal health advisor for global health projects. She is a lead contributor to the Maryland Maternal Health Innovation Program’s maternal health equity toolkit for Maryland hospitals. She serves on the Board of Commissioners for the Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education and is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Midwifery and Women’s Health. Her work leading a hospital-based quality improvement initiative to reduce peripartum racial and ethnic disparities was recognized with an award from the Alliance on Innovation and Maternal Health.


Cherilyn Ashlock, DNP, RN, NE-BC

Cherilyn Ashlock is the Director of Professional Practice at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida. Prior to coming to this role, Ashlock worked with Versant RN Residencies to support implementation of a clinical transition to practice program for new graduate registered nurses. In her current role as director for professional practice, Ashlock oversees clinical and unit-based onboarding, development, and education, nursing research, and nursing quality outcomes. Under her leadership, Johns Hopkins All Children’s continues to develop their transition to practice programs, as well as build upon the preceptor role for nursing and patient care services. Ashlock completed her Doctor of Nursing Practice degree in executive leadership at Old Dominion University in 2017 and focused her capstone work on interventions to prevent missed nursing care in the pediatric acute care environment.


Cindy Bianchini, DNP, RN, NPD-BC

Cindy Bianchini is the Director of the RN Residency Program at Legacy Health in Portland, Oregon. She received her DNP from The University of South Alabama 2019 and her master’s degree in nursing in 2016. Her clinical background is in perioperative nursing, spending five years as a system-wide educator for surgical services, helping to onboard new employees and facilitate ongoing professional development. Bianchini assumed responsibility for the Legacy RN Residency program in its fifth year and has led the building and development of the current program including specialty competencies, a mentor program, curriculum design, and guiding subject-matter experts. She also oversees preceptor development and support with a focus on continuous quality improvement.


Carol A. Bradley MSN, RN, FAONL

Carol Bradley is a nationally known speaker and frequent contributor to journals, media, and professional publications on topics important to nursing and workforce development. She is currently the chief nurse executive for Prolucent Health focused on workforce management technology and services. She previously served as system chief nurse executive for Legacy Health, an eight-hospital system in the Pacific Northwest, as well as nursing executive roles in several other prominent health systems on the West Coast.


Bradley holds a master’s degree from the University of Arizona and is a 1991 Wharton Fellow and a Fellow in the American Organization for Nursing Leadership, where she served as president in 1999. She has served on numerous boards, including the Association of California Nurse Leaders (President), California Association of Hospitals, the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems (Chair), and the Commission on Foreign Nursing Schools (President). She has contributed to several books and serves on the editorial board of Nursing Administrative Quarterly. In 1999, she received the DAISY Lifetime Achievement Award.


Cathleen M. Deckers, EdD, RN, CNE, CHSE

Cathleen Deckers has over 40 years of nursing education experience in both the service and academic arenas. Her academic areas of expertise include utilization of high-fidelity simulation for education and competency assurance, online learning with active learning strategies, and virtual reality/gaming simulation. She is an active participant on the Accreditation Council for the Society of Simulation in Healthcare, working to improve standardization of simulation practices internationally. She serves as the Director of the ISEP simulation education program for the International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation and Learning. Deckers currently works as an Associate Professor of Nursing at California State University, Long Beach. Prior to coming to this role, Deckers worked as Vice President, Nursing Professional Practice, Education, and Nursing Operations for Glendale Memorial Hospital and Health Center in Glendale, California. In this role she provided oversight and direction to the precepting of new nurses to the facility.


Amy K. Doepken, MSN, RN

Amy Doepken is the Director of Patient Care Services at Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center in Vancouver, Washington. Doepken holds a BSN from the University of Portland and a master’s degree in health system leadership from Gonzaga University. She has partnered with the University of Portland to adopt their Dedicated Education Unit model and previously served as the program director for the Legacy Health RN Residency Program. She has a passion for promoting a positive preceptor experience and was instrumental in the design and development of Legacy’s preceptor program, including debriefing and mentoring. Doepken completed the AONL Nurse Manager Fellowship program and was the AACN 2010 Circle of Excellence Award winner in 2010.


Virginia Downie, MSN, RN-BC, NPD-BC

Virginia Downie previously served as the Nursing Education and Practice Specialist at Legacy Health in Portland, Oregon. She provided program support for the Legacy RN Residency Program in the areas of curriculum, mentorship, and preceptorship. She spearheaded the development of the Preceptor Program, including recruitment, training, support, and recognition for RN and non-RN preceptors throughout the organization. Downie received her master’s degree in nursing education from Nebraska Methodist College in 2014 and is board certified as a Nursing Professional Development Specialist.


Denise D. Fall, DNP, RN

Denise Fall recently retired as President, Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center. She also served for many years as Chief Nursing Officer at both Legacy Good Samaritan and Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Centers. Fall received her DNP from the University of San Francisco. She is known for building strong collaborative teams who drive quality and patient outcomes. Fall also served on the board of the Oregon Center for Nursing.


Nelda Godfrey, PhD, ACNS-BC, RN, FAAN, ANEF

Nelda Godfrey is Professor and Associate Dean for Innovative Partnerships and Practice at the University of Kansas School of Nursing. A thought leader in nursing innovation and nursing education, Godfrey writes often on new care delivery models that can be influenced by a stronger emphasis on the nurse within—researching and developing strategies to create the whole person experience in nursing practice going forward. Her work with the International Society for Professional Identity in Nursing is transforming the way nurses, healthcare professionals, and society understand what it means to “think, act and feel like a nurse.” This work offers new language and new knowledge for the journey—helping nurses heal, flourish, and expertly care for others. Godfey also serves and the chair of the American Nurses Association Ethics and Human Rights Advisory Board.


Mary S. Haras, PhD, MBA, APN, NP-C, CNN

Mary Haras is an Associate Professor in the School of Nursing at Georgetown University and teaches in the DNP program. Prior to this role, Haras was the Chair, Department of Advanced Nursing Practice at Georgetown University, and Associate Dean for Graduate Nursing at Saint Xavier University. Haras completed her PhD in nursing at Mennonite College of Nursing–Illinois State University in 2014 with her dissertation focus on measuring nephrology nurse perceptions of advance care planning. Haras is currently a member of the Nephrology Nursing Journal Editorial Board.


Mary Harper, PhD, RN, NPDA-BC

Mary Harper is the Director of Research and Inquiry for the Association for Nursing Professional Development (ANPD). She obtained her master’s degree in nursing administration from the University of Florida and her PhD in nursing from the University of Central Florida. She is a former Director on the Board of Directors of ANPD and has published widely on topics and research related to nursing professional development and precepting. She is co-editor of the 3rd and 4th editions of Nursing Professional Development: Scope and Standards of Practice.


Cindy Lefton, PhD, RN, CPXP

Cindy Lefton has combined her knowledge as an organizational psychologist with her extensive experience as a registered nurse to develop strategies aimed at helping hospitals across the country positively impact their communication and collaboration. As a Consultant for Psychological Associates and a Staff Nurse in both the emergency department and the Women’s Infusion Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri, Lefton utilizes a variety of evidence and resources to guide patient care areas in creating and sustaining healthy work environments and positively impacting patient perceptions.


Lefton has published articles on communication, collaboration, and meaningful recognition and has presented these topics at various national conferences. Lefton has served as member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Trauma Nursing, an Associate Editor for the Journal of Emergency Nursing, and is currently the Director of Patient Experience for The DAISY Foundation.


Robert E. Lefton, PhD

Robert Lefton passed away in 2022 as we were preparing this chapter for the 3rd edition. He was cofounder, Chairman and CEO of Psychological Associates, Inc., St. Louis, Missouri. As a leading United States consultant in leadership and organization development, he worked with many of Fortune’s top 500 companies. Lefton also served on the faculty of Washington University, the Motorola Executive Institute, the ALCOA Executive Institute, and CEO International, Inc. As one of the original developers of Dimensional Training, he conducted seminars for and consulted with several hundred leading corporations in the United States and Europe. Lefton co-authored five books, and a contributed to various business journals as Sales Meetings, Training & Development Journal, National Productivity Review, and Marketing. Lefton served on the Board of Directors for Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc., Barnes-Jewish Hospital of St. Louis, and numerous privately held and family-owned businesses.


Patsy Maloney, EdD, MSN, RN, NPD-BC, CEN, NEA-BC

Patsy Maloney is a Teaching Professor at the University of Washington Tacoma. She earned her master’s degree as an Adult Health Clinical Nurse Specialist from Catholic University of America and her EdD in Higher, Adult, and Professional Education from the University of Southern California. She is past president of ANPD (2018–2020). She is co-editor of Nursing Professional Development: Scope and Standards of Practice, 3rd and 4th edition, and NPD Anthology: Making a Difference and has written numerous articles and book chapters on professional development and leadership.


Kim A. Richards, RN, NC-BC

Kim Richards, an ANCC Board Certified Nurse Coach, inspirational speaker, and author, is passionate about coaching people to create the life they’ve dreamed. She combines over 30 years of resiliency research into the components of Self-Care Academy. Her extensive research on the science of self-care and burnout prevention has been widely published. A book of her personal journey is in the works. Combining her love for sailing and inspiring others, Richards and her husband are living their dream by crewing a luxury charter sailing catamaran in the Caribbean.


Laura Lynn Rooney, DNP, RN, FNP-BC, BC-ADM, FAANP

Laura Rooney has over 25 years of nursing and advanced nursing practice experience, and more than 10 years in nursing education, focusing on the advanced practice role. Rooney has been a family nurse practitioner in primary care, pain management, occupational health, and rural medicine. As director of a nurse-managed clinic, Rooney was successful in implementing the first certified Diabetes Education Management Program in the system, followed by Level 3 recognition from the National Center for Quality Assurance as a Patient Centered Medical Home—the first nurse-managed clinic with this distinction in the health system. As the director and head administrator for the clinic, Rooney was instrumental in establishing protocols and procedures, recruiting and retaining staff, and facilitating teamwork while demonstrating leadership. She now holds a clinical operations and research position with a focus on development of novel therapeutics to treat acute and chronic disease.


Lori Shank, DNP, RN, CPN

Lori Shank is Director of the Registered Nursing program at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kansas. In her current role as Program Director, Shank leads the registered nursing department in accordance with local, state, and professional education essentials and practice. She is also involved in fostering clinical agency affiliations and relationships, coordinating the RN didactic and clinical curriculum, and facilitating matriculation of students through a selective admission process and transition to professional credentialing and practice. Prior to this role, she was a full-time nursing faculty member at the same institution since 2014, teaching didactic and clinical courses in a concept-based curriculum across the life span.


Shank has been a registered nurse for 28 years, beginning her career at the bedside in medical-surgical acute care nursing and also working in family practice, Phase 1 clinical research, and pediatric acute care nursing. She retains her pediatric nurse certification and completed her DNP degree in nursing organizational leadership at the University of Mary in 2023, focusing her leadership practicum experiences on interprofessional collaboration, innovation, and professional identity in nursing. Her collaboration with Nelda Godfrey on Chapter 5 was an outcome of her doctoral preceptorship with Godfrey during the summer of 2022.


Laurie Shiparski, MS, BSN, RN

Laurie Shiparski has over 30 years’ experience in nursing and healthcare leadership positions. She has worked in various roles including critical-care RN, clinical hospital leadership, healthcare consulting business owner, and corporate executive in a healthcare technology and clinical practice company. She is currently a principal at Edgework Institute. As a consultant, Shiparski works in partnership with hospital leadership on leadership development and coaching, communication, physician-driven practice improvement, strategy, and operations improvement. Shiparski has sought to uncover her gifts and bring her authentic self to work and life, which has inspired her to offer programs that focus on taking care of self, navigating change, finding passion and purpose, and creating new possibilities. She is also an international speaker and an author of numerous articles and five books.


Beth Tamplet Ulrich, EdD, RN, FACHE, FAONL, FAAN

Beth Ulrich is a nationally recognized thought leader who is known for her research studying nursing work environments and the experiences of new graduate nurses as they transition from nursing school into the workforce, and for her leadership in developing the roles of nephrology nurses and improving the care of nephrology patients. Ulrich has extensive experience as a healthcare executive, educator, and researcher. She is currently serving as a Professor at the University of Texas Medical Branch School of Nursing in Galveston in the DNP Program, and Editor-in-Chief of the Nephrology Nursing Journal, the professional journal of the American Nephrology Nurses Association. Ulrich has been a co-investigator on a series of national nursing workforce and work environment studies and five national studies of critical-care nurse work environments conducted with the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses.


Ulrich received her bachelor’s degree from the Medical University of South Carolina, her master’s degree from The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, and her doctorate in Allied Health Administration and Education from the University of Houston in a collaborative program with Baylor College of Medicine. She is a past president of the American Nephrology Nurses’ Association, a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, a fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives, and a fellow in the American Organization for Nursing Leadership. She was recognized as the Outstanding Nursing Alumnus of the Medical University of South Carolina in 1989, as a distinguished alumnus of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Nursing in 2002, received the Outstanding Contribution to the American Nephrology Nurses Association award in 2008, and received the Marguerite Rodgers Kinney Award for a Distinguished Career from the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses in 2018. Ulrich has numerous publications and presentations to her credit on topics including nephrology nursing, nurses’ work environments, and how new graduate nurses transition into professional nurses.


Kelly C. Walker, DNP, CNM, FACNM

Kelly C. Walker is an Associate Professor and the Director of Evaluation and Outcomes at Georgetown University’s School of Nursing. Prior to that she was an Assistant Professor and program director for the Nurse Midwifery & Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner Program at Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies. She was a member of the Regional Perinatal Center at Upstate Medical University as a Certified Nurse Midwife and faculty member and in a community outpatient setting. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Russell Sage College, a bachelor’s  and master’s degree in nursing from New York University and a DNP degree from Stony Brook University. Walker also completed a post-doctorate fellowship in leadership and education at Stony Brook University.


Joan Insalaco Warren, PhD, RN, NPD-BC, NEA-BC, FAAN

Joan Warren is the former Executive Director for the Maryland Organization of Nurse Leaders, Inc./ Maryland Nurse Residency Collaborative and former president (2014–2016) and board member of the ANPD. She earned her master of science as a Trauma/Critical Care Clinical Nurse Specialist and doctor of philosophy in nursing from the University of Maryland Baltimore School of Nursing. She is nationally recognized for her research, publications, book chapters, and presentations addressing workforce advancement of nursing professional development practitioners, preceptors, and entry-to practice nurses.


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