Northwest Organization of Nurse Leaders News

April 2022 Newsletter

Executive Director Update

Moving Forward

This is where we are: Actively leading nurses through the process of healing and recovery post pandemic alongside helping them find their grounding amidst seemingly relentless waves of change. There are divergent grumblings from all levels of nursing: “when can we get back to normal, the way things used to work” versus “when are we going to finally accept we are irrevocably changed and adapt to our new realities?” These are divergent views. They place us at a critical crossroad for the nursing profession: Go back or move forward.
One thing is clear, this is not the time to shrink back to doing things “they ways the have always been done”. The lure of falling back onto old ways is a known path, straightforward and packaged neatly with an illusion of safety and consistency. We must not squander this window of opportunity to capitalize on our lessons learned. The pain we have borne, has refined us, tested our resiliency. The changes we have made, willingly or not, shaped us to become more aware, adaptable and agile. Yes, it is still messy and imperfect. All transformational changes are. The friction of change is the tactile feedback that it is actually working. We must allow ourselves the permission and security to accept this truth.

We can absolutely emerge stronger and better positioned to lead the future of healthcare. Forward is our best option. It won’t be easy. It won’t be quick. But it will be worth it.

You are the faces of Courage, Grace and Grit.

Leader Highlight

For April, our own Board Leader Lora Horn has selected Amy Monge BSN, RN as the Leader Highlight. Amy was selected by Lora for her significant role in developing standards, policies, and creating safe environments to provide care to COVID pediatric patients and their families with minimal resources to support the work in addition to her leadership talents over the last five years.

Amy, on behalf of the NWONL Board, congratulations for being selected for the Leader Highlight. You are part of an exceptional league of Nurse Leaders. We are looking forward to supporting your personal and professional leadership advancement!

Read the full article here.

Awards and Celebrations

Thank you Hillsboro Medical Center!
For the second year in a row, Hillsboro Medical Center has invested in their Nursing Leadership development through the NWONL Large Group program. In addition to the renewed members, we welcome new the new Leaders to our Northwestern cadre. We also thank Jen Packer, VP & CNO for championing Membership for the Hillsboro Leaders. 

Thank you Providence Portland Medical Center!
Again, Providence Portland has also invested in their Nursing Leadership development through the NWONL Large Group program. In addition to the renewed members, we welcome new the new Leaders to our Northwestern cadre: We also thank AnneMarie West, Director of Professional Practice for PPMC Nursing for championing Membership for the Providence Leaders in the Portland region. 

DNP Completed!
James Reedy, DNP, MBA, MHA, RN, NEA-BC, FACHE, has completed doctoral presentation and commission acceptance at University of Pittsburg.  In summary, Dr. Reedy's work is a focus on Nursing Leaders readiness for crisis and emergency response. The work endeavors to both understand, position for and make improvements in, the aforementioned. James has provided NWONL members with presentations and insight into the work earlier this year, alas, we look forward to him providing much more!. Congratulations James! This was years of effort and we are very proud to have you as a colleague. 

Board Update

The April Board update focused on Conference Development. You can expect almost all Board Leaders in attendance and also volunteering and guiding at the event, so if you are going to the conference, you will have a chance to meet and engage with Board Leaders face to face. As for the Conference - spread the word. They note, since this is a smaller event, and we are nearly half booked already, put a sense of urgency for leaders to sign up.

Board Member at-Large - The 2022 by-laws specify that the Board is expected and empowered to appoint several Member-at large board positions. These are reserved and intended to allow peer affiliates to engage with NWONL directly. For example, our own Susan Stacey is our WSHA appointee. Another is Jerome Mendoza, our AONL Regional affiliate. The current Board is working to provide additional representation to Oregon as appointees move on to other endeavors as well as assess our affiliations regionally. More to come! 

CNO & Dean Rounding - The Board acknowledges that the Rounding is highly unique. It is the only "meta" level rounding of its type in the region. As such, they endeavor to ensure senior leaders are actively participating. As a senior leader, please try to attend or if you can not, consider appointing one of your leaders to join in your place. There have been many rich discussions on both the academic and clinical side as we alternate the topics monthly and the attendance from organizations across the region outstanding.

Outreach - NWONL Board Leadership approves and will send a representative to the Oregon Consortium for Nursing Education (OCNE) symposium on May 14th (2pm-330pm)  at Clackamas Community College. Desi McCue, President-Elect will represent NWONL and engage attendees to both learn from them and to also enlighten them to the Nursing Leadership journey. Thank you Desi!

Advancing Nursing Leadership Through Research

Valuable and actionable research comes in many forms. Not all is longitudinal, large scale or primary. Often is situational and applied. NWONL Member Leader Sharon Strohecker BSN, RN, of St. Charles is asking peer professionals to assist in her gathering of benchmark data in relation to administration of chemotherapy. From Sharon "We are trying to benchmark, and it would be helpful to know what others are doing.  We administer a smaller volume of chemotherapy a month with the average administration rate being 20-25 (per month)." If you are able to respond to the call, click the link below for an email template: 

  1. What is the Nurse-to-patient ratio’s for Rituxan, induction chemo’s.

  2. Are they holding rooms for patients for admissions or admitting as they have discharges?

  3. Required education and process for yearly competency?

  4. If they are doing the Chemotherapy Biotherapy course, are they requiring the Q2 year Refresher course?

CNO & Dean Rounding Report

April 20th, 2022: "Evaluating and Improving Clinical Placements in 2022" 
Session leader Kyra McCoy, the current President of CNEWS (Council on Nursing Education in Washington State) and Director of Nursing at Edmonds College.  

The session was highly engaging and exceptionally well attended. In the session, Krya facilitated, and the scope of dialog included:

Overall Sentiment
How are the new grads doing? Overall, the sentiment is “they are doing well, given the situation”. Given a high level of simulation and online learning being a difference from past cohorts, is there a gap? The group reported that no, there are not (clinical) gaps different from the pre-pandemic students. This was a largely shared concern. That is (heavy sim/online) may impact performance in the field. Overall no, not clinically.

Clinical Capabilities and Retention
As for clinical skills given the simulation and online focus, there is an impression that the skill level is quite high (surprisingly to some). Albeit the Dean’s in attendance did highlight that the learning content is the same, just the delivery has changed. Feedback from sites is that time management and prioritization is the area of challenge, not the technical-clinical skills.

For retention, the general response is that, for med-surg, they move on quickly. Therefore, an organization must prepare to help them move internally or they will move externally (competitors). This is not just a pay issue. New and younger workforces are demanding different work environments, compared to prior generations. Med-surg is not alone, this however was a salient issue in the med-surg specialty. As a group, the response was agreement. As this (expectations to be professional and happy) has not been the case often many long-standing nurse leaders. They have something to teach us.

Placements and Preceptors
How are things going for clinical placement now that the pandemic has slowed down a bit? Simultaneously, how are the staff nurses doing in terms of handling the extra burden of students on the unit? Kyra noted that given staffing challenges, in general preceptors are also “newer”, how are younger and (potentially) less experienced preceptors performing?

Generalist vs Specialist?
Thirdly, the group was asked: What can faculty do to help make the learning environment better for the students and the staff nurses?

Re-imagining Clinical Practice Education
If we could throw out what we have now and completely re-imagine clinical practice education for nursing students- what would that look like? 

In Closing
What is next? How do we move forward together to create a shared future? As a group, it was noted that a three-hour summit (for example) with working groups and facilitated structure would be welcomed. Perhaps NWONL can lead in this area as they operate at a meta-level across all systems/organizations. What do you think about a Q4 Rounding Summit for this very purpose? Let us know.

Are you a Senior Leader?
The Rounding is a monthly work session for strategic leaders accorss the region to engage directly with their peers. Given its nature, it is invitation only. If you are not already on the invitation list, contact us.

NWONL Annual Conference 2022 | Moving Forward

June 2nd and 3rd | Hilton Seattle Airport Conference Center | Register Here

Welcome Leaders!

We are Moving Forward, as individuals and as professional team and organizational Leaders. ?It is our first full in-person event since 2019. Invitation is limited and offered to NWONL Members and affiliates as a priority. Of note, as of April 23rd, our conference is already 60% booked. We absolutely want you to attend, please book soon as not to miss out!

What to Expect

This conference's focus is driven by the Member survey, Commission and Board guidance. For 2022 we are focusing heavily on nurse and nurse leader wellness, leader development, innovative staffing, and retention, leveraging trauma informed care plus moving diversity, equity and inclusion into sustainable outcomes.

Day One 3pm – 7pm

3:00pm: Inspire and Connect reflection event. A facilitated rounding where we share stories, celebrate, reflect, close, and heal as Leaders from our years of shared pandemic response. This is our unique and intimately focused session designed for Nurse Leaders.

5:00pm: Evening Social for Leaders for renewing relationships and building new ones with peer leaders from across our region.

Day Two 7:30am – 4pm

7:30am: Breakfast and NWONL Presidents Welcome by Jen Packer MSN, RN, CENP.

8:00am: Kickoff Session, Know Better/Do Better: Moving from Awareness to Action for Creating Cultures of Belonging with Moe Carrick.Moe is a longstanding NWONL supporter, an author and a preeminent voice in leadership development, cultures that build and sustain themselves, advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion from thought exercise to sustained outcomes and more:  Get to know Moe!

9:45am: Nursing and workforce Planning Strategies for Post-pandemic Care Teams presented by Kelly Espinoza PhD, RN, VP & CNO, Melinda Stibal, MSN, MBA, VP & CNO and Denise Sartz, DNP, RN, FNP, NEA-BC, System Director, Clinical Practice.

11:00am: Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Decreases Burnout in Staff Nurses and Nurse Leaders, presented by Desi McCue, DNP, MBA, BSN, RN, CENP, Director of Nursing, Emergency Services.

Noon: Lunch and Connection prior to starting the afternoon sessions.

1:00pm: Using Trauma Informed Leadership to Shape our Future presented by Jennifer Graves VP of Quality and Safety. 

2:45pm: Quality Improvement Through Mentorship presented by Kristen Ash DNP, MSN, ANP-BC Lead Nurse Practitioner.

4:00pm: Final Remarks and Call to Action by NWONL President and Board Members. 


The event is designed to be exclusive, NWONL Members and ACNL affiliates have priority access to the event. Non-member nursing leaders will be offered limited attendance.

Lodging and Location

The location was selected for both comfort and convenience, to maximize our time spent together. The Hilton will provide event attendees a preferred conference rate.

Continuing Education

A valid RN license is required along with attendance and completion of the post event CE survey. Continuing Education Provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #17495

Time Well Spent

Researchers at the Center for Interdisciplinary Health Workforce Studies at Montana State University College of Nursing, Bozeman just published findings that validate what we have been fearing: The supply of RNs is decreasing, and younger RNs are leaving the workforce. Read the full story here.

Nurse Practitioners now have full practice authority in 26 states with Kansas and New York passing legislation this month. Better access to Nurse Practitioners has proven healthy effects on communities and populations that they care for. Celebrate and read more  Read the full story here.

Finally, in a little uplifting news, read about a DNP project from an innovative nurse who instituted the use of Virtual Reality goggles to improve pain tolerance of burn patients during dressing changes. She describes nurses and medical staff who also experienced less burnout as a result of implementing the practice of VR. Read the full story here.

Upcoming Events 

Seattle Council
April 26th, 5 - 6pm PST
Members are always welcome, even if not in the region. Register for the session here.

Leadership Commission
April 28th, Noon - 1pm PST
NWONL Members. Register for the session here.

Member Event: "Are You Sabotaging Your Own Resilience?"
April 29th, 2 - 3pm PST
1 CE Available
Burnout and resilience are a popular topic and much has been presented and published. This session will narrow this broad topic, helping to focus on where to start, what to prioritize, and how to take action. Join us in the April Member CE/Info event. Register for the session here.

Southern Oregon & Willamette Council
May 4th, 3 - 4:30pm PST
Members are always welcome, even if not in the region. Register for the session here.

Development Commission
May 11th, Noon - 1pm PST
NWONL Members. Register for the session here.

Southwest Washington & Tacoma-Kitsap  Oregon & Council
May 17th, 5:30 - 6:30pm PST
Members are always welcome, even if not in the region. Request invitation from Council Leaders here. 

CNO & Dean Rounding
May 18th, 7 - 8am PST
Invitational Event
Agenda forthcoming, email for invitation if not already confirmed.

So You Want to be a Professor? Workshop
May 20th, 9am - 1:30pm PST
Provided by the Washington Center for Nursing: Information and Registration here. 

Member Event: "Succession Planning, A Strategy for Inclusion, Engagement, and Development"
May 19th, 7 - 8am PST
Join us as we are lead by Susan Stacy, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FACHE Regional Chief Nursing Officer at Providence Washington as she presents on succession planning strategies. Register for the session here.

Seattle Council
May 24th, 5 - 6pm PST
Members are always welcome, even if not in the region. Register for the session here.

NWONL in Action

March Leader Highlight, if you did not read it yet... 
Our March Leader Highlight is Amber Peterson, MSN, RN “Amber Peterson has been an ED leader the past 2.5 years at the St. Charles Health System’s Redmond campus. Her leadership mission is to “lean forward and to quietly lead through consistent action, always reflecting on how and who she leads, and always seeking opportunities for self-improvement". Read the Highlight here.

April's Member CE/Info event helps prepare leaders for the Annual Conference
"Are You Sabotaging Your Own Resilience?" Burnout and resilience are a popular topic and much has been presented and published. This session will narrow this broad topic, helping to focus on where to start, what to prioritize, and how to take action. Join us in the April Member CE/Info event on April 29th.  Register here.

May's Member CE/Info event is focused on personal and organizational development
"Succession Planning: A Strategy for Inclusion, Engagement, and Development", join us as we are lead by Susan Stacy, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, FACHE Regional Chief Nursing Officer at Providence Washington as she presents on proven succession planning strategies. Register here.

Development Commission Update
The Commission reports for April that NWONL active membership is growing as Annual Conference invitations have now been opened to non-members. The Commission focus for April was:

Leadership Commission Update

The march session encompassed a policy and legislative activities in our region. Guests included: Andi Easton, Vice President of Government Affairs, Oregon Association of Hospitals & Health Systems, Ruby Jason, Executive Director, Oregon State Board of Nursing, Paula Meyer, Executive Director Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission Washington State Department of Health, Chelene Whitaker Associate General Counsel, Washington State Hospital Association and Jana Bitton, Executive Director Oregon Center for Nursing.

Career Center Update
We offer our Career Center service for our Members as a way to help them both in acquiring staff but also as they personally are seeking change. We encourage you to leverage the NWONL Career Center as we know leaders and staff from our region most likely stay in our region, Oregon and Washington plus the surrounding West coast areas (predominantly California). Take a look should you have interest: NWONL Career Center. Current active postings include:

Did you know NWONL has a personal Recruitment Specialist assigned to us? Yes! It means you have an extra hand, a recruitment professional that is also a pro in using the NWONL career site. Our contact is Jonathan Andrews. Feel free to share his information with your recruitment team or contact him directly: 

Events and Councils Calendar

Councils, Commissions and Events are engaging and excellent ways to learn get involved and connected with your Nurse Leader peers. Join one!

April 26, Seattle Council
April 28, Leadership Commission
April 29, NWONL Member CE/Info Event "Are you Sabotaging your own Resilience?"
May 04, Southern Oregon & Willamette Council
May 11, Development Commission
May 17, Southwest Washington, Tacoma & Kitsap Council
May 18, CNO & Dean Rounding
May 19, NWONL Member CE/Info Event "Succession Planning: A Strategy for Inclusion, Engagement, and Development"
May 20, So you want to be a Professor? Workshop
May 24, Seattle Council
May 26, Leadership Commission
June 02, NWONL Annual Conference 2022

See all events in one place here at NWONL Events

Maximize your Membership

Advance Your Leadership Skills Repertoire 
It is one thing to lead from a position of authority within the boundaries of your own organization. Its a completely different skill set to influence and lead others outside your organization and when you have no positional authority. Yet as we move laterally and vertically in our organizations and regions we must master the ability to influence and lead others regardless of their position and organization. The more you advance in your career, the more the need for adaptive leadership skills. You can read about this, even take classes and get mentoring. Ultimately do do it well means you have to put in the time to practice. Consider leveraging NWONL in this journey. Through Council, Commission or even Board Leadership, you have the opportunity to develop and hone your skills outside the boundaries of your position and organization. 

Expand Your Professional Presence and Add to Your CV
Do you have something you would like to consider for professional presentation? Are you a Graduate or Doctoral candidate with something to share? Do you or your team have a salient project or program outcomes that are compelling? Do you simply want to increase your skills at public presentation? There is something distinctly unique and valuable from sharing your knowledge outside the confines of your own team, department or organization. It is part of truly gaining perspective, feedback and advancing your practice. NWONL has the capability to support you in these endeavors. Submit your idea/concept/presentation/research for consideration Continuing Education Offering Approval Form. If you have something that you feel is worthy but not directly CE related, that is also an option for you, reach out to us via the Continuing Education Offering form (above) or contact us at  Sharpen your skills, build your CV, trial concepts and ideas and contribute to a vibrant Northwest Nursing Leadership knowledgebase.

Stay Meaningfully Connected and Informed
To move from a distinctly local operations focus to strategic and visionary leadership requires being attuned to what is happening not only in your organization but in your community, state and region. To hack a well worn phrase, no organization is an island... When you make time to join and attend Councils, information and CE events and contribute, you invariable are brought close to what is really impacting your community and region. These affect all of us in the Northwest, large and small. As a Leader, staying attuned to the what, where, why, who and how of your community, state and region is a hallmark of an influential leader.

Acknowledge and Celebrate Peer Leaders
We strive to recognize both the little and big events that mark our careers. They all are important in their own unique ways and ultimately contribute to the legacy we will leave upon our teams. Our primary methods is to both recognize strong leadership formally and make it visible to our members. Each month we seek to acknowledge the advancements and contributions of Member Leaders and affiliates though direct recognition at events and our Newsletter and a Leader Highlight. Leader Highlight and Member Newsletter are finalized the second week of the month for delivery the 3rd week, email us at

2022 Goals - a Big Year Ahead


What is Large Group Membership?
It is a simplified registration and renewal process. Organizations submit a list of new or renewing members, we add them and one payment is made for all. In lock-step with AONL, a Large Group Membership discount is also given.Group Members enjoy exactly the same benefits of single Membership in NWONL including: access to webinars, legislative health policy updates, CE opportunities (peer CE is always no additional cost to Members), Council attendance and reference, formal board and committee leadership service potential, research on best practices, first access plus discounts on NWONL’s annual conference, regional and virtual summits and professional development courses. That said, if you EVER have any issues regardless of organization size: contact us immediately

What is Sponsorship? 
There are Nurse Leaders in our region that do not have organizational support for Membership, for a variety of reasons and that is understandable. Sponsorship is when Member pays for the membership on another's behalf. Its a unique method for rewarding and promoting others who may not be in a position personally or organizationally to obtain membership. A Member may sponsor one other non-member for a year. The dues are $95 and akin to the privileges of the graduate student level membership. Do you want to assist others in getting connected meaningfully to the Northwest's Premier Nursing Leadership network... this is your lever. Simply email us at and we will get you setup. 

Need to reactivate a membership? 
We are not sure if you knew this but, there is no penalty for late renewals, your account will simply "time out" and you will go into a dropped-pending reinstatement status. You can pick back up when your able. 

Having Issues with reactivating or renewing? 
Nurse leaders are exceptionally busy... we certainly don't want to pile on, so email us at and we will take care of it for you ASAP!

Want to renew early? 
If you want to pay early, you can do that too, your membership term is extended for a year from its end date. Of note, invoices are generated 30 days prior to renewal. 

Re-activate your Membership or Renew

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