Class of 2005

Every VUSN graduate has exciting things happening in her or his life, both professionally and personally.  Class Notes – printed twice a year in the Vanderbilt Nurse Magazine and available online on this page – is an opportunity for you to not only learn what other alumni are doing but also share news about your life.  We would love to hear what you've been up to! Please contact us with any updates, or call 615-322-4836. 

The most recent listings appear first. More info may be available at and in the Class Notes sections of Vanderbilt Nurse Magazine at

Alison Anderson, MSN'05, PhD'21, is co-author of "Determining the Impact of Age and Sex on the Psychophysical and Neurophysiological Response to Thermal Pain across the Adult Lifespan," published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing in January 2021, and is lead author of "Experimentally Evoked Pain in Alzheimer's Disease," published in March in the Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners . She co-authored "Neuroimaging Methods for Nursing Science," published in December 2019 in Nursing Research , and "Pain Management," published in the December 2017 issue of Critical Care Nursing Clinics .

James Askew, MSN'05, is an acute care pediatric nurse practitioner in the pediatric intensive care unit at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (2016).

Beth Barry, MSN'05, is a nurse practitioner specializing in family medicine at Crestwood Medical Group, Bailey Cove in Huntsville, Alabama (2020).

Carol Brandon, MSN'05, of Murfreesboro, Tennessee, passed away February 25, 2018. 

Eydie Cloyd, MSN'05, was promoted to assistant professor at VUSN in June 2021, and was interviewed for the Going Through It with Holly and Kacy podcast, "Episode Four: Eydie Cloyd, Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Answers Common Questions about Psychotropic Medications," recorded that year. She and her spouse, Kacy Silverstein, BA'04, MEd'06, welcomed babies in August 2019 and October 2017. Eydie co-presented "Who's Caring for the Midwife? Compassion and Caregiver Fatigue in the Setting of Secondary Traumatic Stress," at the American College of Nurse-Midwives conference in May 2018, and spoke about mindfulness for Vanderbilt University Medical Center's grand rounds in July 2015. 

Amy Cochran, MSN'05, is a nurse-midwife with Covington Women's Health Specialists in Georgia (2016).  

Denise Woodring Cochran, MSN'05, was named Preceptor of the Year for the VUSN nurse-midwifery specialty in 2021.

Shanita Coleman-Dockery, MSN'05, received an Excellence in Patient Experience Award from Vanderbilt University Medical Center in October 2021. She is a nurse practitioner in the Vanderbilt Health Family Practice in Spring Hill, Tennessee.

Nina Sanfilippo Collins, BS'99, MSN'05, co-authored "Dedicated, Proactive, Nurse Practitioner Rapid Response Team Eliminating Barriers," published in The Journal for Nurse Practitioners in September 2019.

Sarah Halberg Cossette, MSN'05, was named among AZBusiness and AZRE magazines Most Influential Women in Arizona in August 2021. She is vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer at Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Phoenix. 

Amanda Decker, MSN'05, was interviewed on the Livin' La Vida Low-Carb Show in September 2020.

Megan Mutz Fish, MSN'05, is a women's health nurse practitioner specializing in obstetrics and gynecology at Hendricks Regional Health in Danville, Indiana (2020).

Celia Forno, MSN'05, is self-employed as a psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner for adults and children in Raleigh, North Carolina (2018).

Virginia Sinclair Gardner, MSN'05, presented "Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia," at the American Psychiatric Nurses Association conference in October 2019. She received the VUSN Sara K. Archer Excellence in Teaching Award from students in the Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner specialty in August 2018. Virginia is a PMHNP at the Nashville Center for Hope and Healing.

Michael Gooch, MSN'05, is author of "A New Rash Differential: COVID-19," published in the January/March 2021 issue of Advanced Emergency Nursing Journal , and a contributing author for the book, Emergency Nurse Practitioner Core Curriculum , published by Springer in August. He presented, "Bugs and Drugs," "Hormones, Glands and Steroids: An Endocrine Review," "Evaluation and Management of Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS)" and "GU Complaints: Discharge to Stones and More," at the American Association of Nurse Practitioners conference in September. That year, he was appointed to the Air and Surface Transport Nurses Association's Advanced Practice Transport Nurse Committee as one of two liaisons to the ASTNA Board. Michael is the author of "Preventing Cauliflower Ear," published in the July/September 2020 issue of the Advanced Emergency Nursing Journal . He presented "Basic to Advanced Emergency HEENT Procedures," "Hormones, Glands and Steroids: Endocrine in the ED," and "Toxicology in Emergency and Critical Care," at the AANP conference in June 2019. Michael was promoted to assistant professor at VUSN in January 2018, and successfully defended his doctor of nursing practice project on rapid sequence intubation at Loyola University Chicago, in July 2016. 

Nalo Hamilton, MSN'05, was a panelist for "What a Nurse Can Do: The Surprisingly Broad Range of Expertise among Nurses/Nurse Practitioners," in May 2021, part of the VUSN Dore to Door Alumni Forum. She is an associate professor at the University of California Los Angeles School of Nursing and UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center; Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nurse Faculty Scholar; and an affiliate member of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

Abby Bowen James, MSN'05, is a women's health nurse practitioner with Cumberland Skin in Nashville, a private practice dermatology office seeing both medical and cosmetic dermatology patients (2017).

Karyn Jones, MSN'05, received an Excellence in Patient Experience Award from Vanderbilt University Medical Center in October 2021.

April Kapu, MSN'05, DNP'13, was interviewed in a Vanderbilt Magazine article in February 2021 about the emotional impact of caring for COVID patients had on Vanderbilt University Medical Center providers. In March, she was a panelist for the VUSN Alumni Board's annual DNP Know Your Value, and for "Capturing APP Value: Industry Leaders Share Their Experiences," a webinar hosted by the Chartis Group. That April, she spoke before the Tennessee Nurse Practitioners Association and was a panelist for "Leadership in the Time of Coronavirus: Stories from the Top," part of the VUSN Dore to Door Alumni Forum. She was also active in VUSN/VUMC's efforts to get COVID-19 vaccines to refugees, immigrants and other underserved communities in Nashville, which covered by Fox 17, Nashville Post , Nashville Scene , NewsChannel 5, Tennessean , Tennessee Tribune and WSMV. In July, April became president of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners and VUSN's associate dean for clinical and community partnerships. The news was picked up by many outlets, including Fierce Healthcare , The Hill and The Tennessee Tribune . She co-presented, "Advanced Practice: State and Federal Updates," in July during VUMC Advanced Practice grand rounds, and, in October, gave the Viana McCown Lectureship hosted by the Center for Nursing Leadership at the University of South Carolina College of Nursing. Hers was the lead story in HealthLeaders ; she appeared July to December in interviews by HealthLeaders , Wall Street Journal (picked up by Becker's Hospital Review and Fox News), WSMV, HealthTech , GoodRX , Advisory Board , Clinical Advisor , WRCB, HealthLeaders , Hematology Advisor , NewsChannel 9, Clinical Advisor , Vice and the Modern Medicaid Alliance website. In the fall, she was interviewed on a variety of nursing, staffing, COVID and health care topics, including 17 times in November around Nurse Practitioner Week. In September, she published "Patients are Choosing Nurse Practitioners as Their Primary Care Provider in Many Communities across the U.S.," in the  Journal of Nursing Administration , and is lead author of "Development and Testing of an Advanced Practice Clinical Advancement Program within an Academic Medical Center," in the Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners . An opinion piece April wrote about full practice authority in Tennessee was published in the Tennessean in May 2020. She was interviewed by Medical Ethics Advisor for "Burnout Prevention Is Central Ethical Concern for Hospitals," both that July. She presented "Crisis and DNP Opportunity: Practice and Policy during COVID," in October at the doctor of nursing practice summit hosted by the University of Rochester School of Nursing, and co-authored "Developing and Expanding APRN and PA Teams," published by American Nurse in December. April received a Society of Critical Care Medicine Presidential Citation in February 2019, and presented "NP Value: Know Your Why and Know Your Worth," at the TNPA conference in March. She co-presented "Preventing Burnout," and "Deployment of NPs to Combat America's Opioid Crisis," at the AANP conference in June, and co-authored "Dedicated, Proactive, Nurse Practitioner Rapid Response Team Eliminating Barriers," published in The Journal for Nurse Practitioners , and "Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants in Acute and Critical Care: A Concise Review of the Literature and Data 2008–2018," in Critical Care Medicine . April was inducted as a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing in October, and shared the spotlight with Dean Linda Norman to receive the American Association of Colleges of Nursing New Era for Academic Nursing Award for a partnership between VUSN and VUMC. She co-authored "Assessing and Addressing Practitioner Burnout: Results from an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Health and Well-being Study," published in November in the Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners . In 2018, April was appointed by Governor Bill Haslam to the Tennessee Commission on Pain and Addiction Medicine Education. She was director of the VUMC Acute Care Nurse Practitioner/Physician Assistant Critical Care Bootcamp, and was published in VUMC's The Empowered Nurse: Peer-Reviewed Journal for Innovative VUMC Nursing Research , Volume 1, Issue 2. She received funding from the Fellows of the AANP to recruit participants and conduct an expanded advanced practice registered nurses Choosing Wisely collaborative study in 2017, and co-directed the sixth annual ACNP/PA Critical Care Boot Camp at VUMC that September. She co-presented "Optimized Efficiency and Effectiveness: Impact of an Academic Medical Center APRN Workflow Analysis," at the National Magnet Conference, and received the Tennessee Hospital Association's Clinical Nurse of Distinction Award, both in 2015.  

Lisa Lachenmyer, MSN'05, is a pediatric nurse practitioner at Vanderbilt Children's Gastroenterology in Nashville (2019).

Julie Lindsay, MSN'05, is assistant professor at the Saint David's School of Nursing at Texas State University in Round Rock (2019).

Alana Ludwick, MSN'05, DNP'12, was named director of nursing at Peninsula College in Port Angeles, Washington, in 2016.  

Heather Hair Meissen, MSN'05, DNP'21, was appointed as commissioner to the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Commission on Accreditation in Practice Transition Programs in August 2020. She co-presented a fundamentals of critical care course at the American Association of Nursing Practitioners conference in June 2019, and presented at the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses National Teaching Institute meeting in May 2018. Heather is director of the nurse practitioner/physician's assistant critical care residency program and clinical instructor at Emory University's Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing in Atlanta, and a nurse practitioner in the critical care medicine-surgical intensive care unit at Emory University Hospital.

Jennifer Mitchell, MSN'05, was quoted in the VUMC Reporter in May 2020 for a story about Vanderbilt University Medical Center's quick transition to telehealth in the early days of COVID-19. She co-presented "Innovative Models for the Delivery of Convenient Outpatient Care," during VUMC advanced practice grand rounds in September 2019. Jennifer is director of Vanderbilt Health OnCall.

Bette Moore, PhD'05, retired in August 2021 from VUSN where she was an associate professor. She wrote The Dreaming Road, a book about the passing of her daughter, and was interviewed in The Tennessean and The Vanderbilt Hustler in 2018 about her hope that the book will help others who are experiencing loss. The novel was a finalist in the Best Book Awards (new age category), given by the American Book Fest. In 2016, her research on skin-to-skin contact between mothers and newborns was featured in media such as the Huffington Post , Asia One Health , Jordan Times and the Grand Forks Herald . Bette was a technical advisor for the World Health Organization Guideline Development Group Nutrition Actions sub-committee, and was on a team that received the Vanderbilt University Medical Center Professional Research Recognition Award. She was a Top 5 poster finalist in the research category at the 2015 Summer Institute on Evidence Based Practice at the University of Texas Health Science Center.

Abigail Morgan, MSN'05, is a women's health nurse practitioner at the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation clinic in Bethel, Alaska (2017).

Abby Luck Parish, MSN'05, is co-author of "Educational Theory and Cognitive Science," published in Nursing Clinics of North America in September 2021. She was named director of education innovation at VUSN in September 2020, and was hosted by the Vanderbilt Family and Child Center to present self-care tips for caregivers in November. Abby was appointed to represent VUSN on the Vanderbilt University Online Education Committee in August 2019. That year, she co-presented "Speak up Culture and the Academic Nursing Environment: The Junior Faculty Perspective," at a Sigma Theta Tau International conference, and was featured as a Gerontological Advanced Practice Nurses Association Rising Star on the organization's website. Abby received the VUSN Tradition Meets Innovation Award in May 2018, received the Sara K. Archer Excellence in Teaching Award from students in the Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner specialty in August 2017, and welcomed a daughter that September. She was featured on the Vanderbilt University Center for Teaching website in February 2016, as a junior faculty teaching fellow, and co-authored "A Nurse Practitioner-Led Heart Failure Education Program for Certified Nursing Assistants in a Long-Term Care Facility," published in the Annals of Long Term Care in May.

Mia Pelt, MSN'05, is a certified nurse-midwife in Seattle at Swedish Midwifery Ballard (2017).

Carrie Plummer, MSN'05, led VUSN's participation in a mass-vaccination event at Nashville's Nissan Stadium in March 2021, and is co-founder and co-leader of the VUSN/VUMC Mobile Vaccine Team that provides COVID-19 vaccines and boosters throughout Middle Tennessee, covered in 2021 by Fox 17, NewsChannel 5, Tennessee Tribune and WSMV. She and her mother presented gardening tips to VUSN faculty, staff and students in May, hosted by the School Life Committee. In October, Carrie received the Alma Gault Award for Public Service, presented by the VUSN Alumni Association during the school's annual awards ceremony, and co-presented a poster, "Structured Debrief: From Theory to Integration," at the American Psychiatric Nurses Association conference. She received the VUSN Dean's Award for Faculty Achievement in Academic Endeavors in July 2020. Carrie co-presented a poster, "Gifted High School Students Excel in Challenging Interprofessional Course Evaluating Social Determinants of Health," at Vanderbilt University's Health Professions Education Research Day in October 2019, and was featured on PBS NewsHour in November about Nashville nonprofit Music for Seniors and the benefits of music for older adults. Carrie was showcased in the Nashville Public Television documentary, Companionship & Intimacy: Aging Matters, which aired that December, during which she and others shared information about intimacy and health for older adults. In July 2018, she was interviewed by Daily Nurse about the Medical-Legal Partnership Clinic, an interprofessional program she piloted at Vanderbilt involving the Law School, Medical Center and VUSN to assist older adults with advanced care planning. She co-presented about the Partnership at the Tennessee Nurses Association conference that October. Carrie received the VUSN Tradition Meets Innovation Award for Faculty in May 2017.

Heather Robbins, MSN'05, was recognized by Vanderbilt News in May 2020, for her innovative thinking that allowed VUSN students to continue simulation lab work in spite of COVID-19 challenges. She was promoted to assistant professor at VUSN in 2019, and received funding that December from the VUSN Faculty Scholarship Program for her project, "Clinical Evaluation Improvement Project: Assessing Student Clinical Competency."

Tina Sasso, MSN'05, received an Excellence in Patient Experience Award from Vanderbilt University Medical Center in October 2021.

Kathryn Scoville, MSN'05, is a nurse practitioner in the Dartmouth-Hitchcock health system in Winchester, New Hampshire (2020).
Megan Simmons, MSN'05, PMC'13, DNP'13, co-presented, "Innovative Strategies for Optimizing Virtual Learning and Telehealth Simulation Experiences for PMHNP Students," at the American Psychiatric Nurses Association conference in October 2021. She welcomed a son in July 2020 and a daughter in March 2018. Megan spoke about mental and emotional health in older adults during Vanderbilt's January 2017 Boomers, Elders and More series, and earned the Gerontological Advanced Practice Nurses Association's first-ever Rising Star Award in August 2015.  

Victoria Soltis-Jarrett, PMC'05, was inducted as a fellow into the American Academy of Nursing in October 2020. She is the Carol Morde Ross Distinguished Professor of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nursing at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Missi Willmarth Stec, MSN'05, DNP'10, joined Wilson Health in Sidney, Ohio, in June 2021 as a certified nurse-midwife, and, in September, became a professor at Emory University's Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing in Atlanta. In 2017, she was named a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing. Missi is chair of the American College of Nurse-Midwives division of education.

Erica Anderson Stone, MSN'05, was promoted to assistant professor at VUSN in June 2021, and authored "Best Practices in Nursing: Advocacy and Empowerment," published in September in Nursing Clinics of North America , for which she was editor. She earned her doctor of nursing practice from the University of Michigan in May 2018. Her project is titled "Challenging Barriers to Physical Activity: An Urban Clinic-based Walking Intervention." Erica wrote a letter to the editor about full practice authority for advanced practice registered nurses that was printed by the Tennessean in May 2016. 

Missy Travis, MSN'05, is founder of IP&C Consulting, a provider of classes and other educational resources about infection prevention (2020).

Raven Dedrick Wentworth, MSN'05, was interviewed in June 2020 by Memphis Medical News for its "Nurses Roundtable" about full practice authority. She is president of District 6 of the Tennessee Nurses Association, associate professor at Freed Hardeman University, and a nurse practitioner, all in central West Tennessee.

Kelley Whitaker, MSN'05, is clinical nurse supervisor and a nurse practitioner at Nashville Fertility Center (2020).

Tracie Doyle Wilder, MSN'05, is a women's health nurse practitioner at Tennessee Maternal Fetal Medicine in Nashville (2020).