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Contact: Melissa Hahn | 217.557.7354 | 217.441.1066 cell |

Sept. 19, 2018


SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE) and the Illinois Nursing Workforce Center (INWC) Advisory Board are proud to acknowledge the 2018 Nurse Educator Fellow recipients, each of whom is awarded $10,000 to help promote excellence in nursing education. “It is an honor to actively support the Nurse Educator Fellows program,” said Dr. Al Bowman, executive director of IBHE. “These nurse educators are highly qualified, and Illinois is fortunate to have them in teaching roles in our state as we work toward reversing our nursing shortage.”

The recipients are using the funding to conduct research, attend and/or present study findings at a conference or for continuing education. Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation Director Jessica Baer said, “I would like to thank and congratulate these outstanding professionals for their dedication to educating and supporting the next generation of nurses. Their qualifications are impressive, and the specialties and projects that they are pursuing are remarkable.”

Some of those projects include collaborating with a colleague in Japan on acute coronary syndrome symptoms, research into teaching strategies, evaluating federally qualified health centers, pursuing simulation education, and researching culturally sensitive care to vulnerable populations.

The awards were given at recognition ceremonies in Chicago and Springfield. Those attending in Chicago, left to right:


Jie Chen, PhD, RN, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb

Georgine Maisch, MSN, RN, CHSE, Aurora University

Carol Kostovich, PhD, RN CHSE, Loyola University of Chicago

Tisha Goad, MSN, RN, Lake Land College, Mattoon

Kelli Nickols, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, Moraine Valley Community College, Palos Hills

Maripat King, DNP, ACNP, RN, University of Illinois at Chicago

Marcia Bulthuis, MS, RN, CNOR, Prairie State College, Chicago Heights

Nanci Reiland, MSN, DNP (c), RN, PHNA-BC, Lewis University, Romeoville

Toula Kelikian, MS, PhD (c), MS, RN, Morton College, Cicero

Those recipients attending in Springfield, left to right:


Kelly Tisdale, MSN, DNP (c), RN, Joliet Junior College

Denise Caldwell, MSN, RN, Lewis & Clark Community College, Godfrey

Ann Eckhardt, PhD, RN, Illinoi Wesleyan University, Bloomington

Anne Yates Hustad, MSN, RN, CNE, PEL-CSN, Illinois Eastern-Olney Central College, Olney

Amanda Hopkins, PhD., RN, Illinois Wesleyan University, Bloomington

Orin Reitz, PhD, MBA, RN, NEA-BC, Illinois State University, Normal

Jamie Nickell, MSN, RN, Millikin University, Decatur

Pam Laskowski, MSN, PhD (c), RN, CNE, Millikin University, Decatur

Not photographed:

Jennifer Smith, MSN, MBA, RN, William Rainey Harper College, Palatine

All of the recipients continue to be employed in nursing education at the institution that nominated them for this recognition. In addition, 90 percent are employed as faculty, and 10 percent have a dual administration/faculty role.

Illinois and the nation must address the healthcare demands of a growing and aging population at the same time that many experienced nurses will be reaching retirement age. This exacerbates the demand for registered nurses. To help address this concern, Illinois state government is helping to provide the resources necessary to train more highly-skilled nurses in Illinois by retaining qualified faculty.