Dr. Donald Berwick

Lecturer of Health Care Policy, Department of Health Care Policy, Harvard Medical School; President Emeritus and Senior Fellow, Institute for Healthcare Improvement; Former Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

Award Plenary: The Moral Determinants of Health
Geraldine “Polly” Bednash Lectureship Award

Sunday, March 21 | 2:30-3:30 p.m. (ET)


Berwick Bio 

Donald M. Berwick, MD, MPP is President Emeritus and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), an organization he co-founded and led as President and CEO for 19 years.  Dr. Berwick is one of the nation's leading authorities on healthcare quality and improvement.  In July 2010,  he was appointed to the position of Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.A pediatrician by background, Dr. Berwick has served as Clinical Professor of Pediatrics and Health Care Policy at the Harvard Medical School, Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health, and as a member of the staffs of Boston's Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Brigham and Women's Hospital.  Dr. Berwick is the author or co-author of over 200 scientific articles and six books.  He serves now as Lecturer in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School. 

Sue Birch

Dr. Betty Rambur

Dr. Mary Wakefield

Polly Pittman

Sue Birch, Director, Washington State Health Care Authority, Betty Rambur, PhD, RN, Routhier Chair for Practice and Professor, The University of Rhode Island, Providence, RI, Mary Wakefield, PhD, RN, School of Nursing, The University of Texas Austin, Austin, TX; Member, President Biden Transition Team, and Polly Pittman, PhD, Professor of Health Policy and Management, Director Fitzhugh Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity, George Washington University, Washington DC

Plenary: Academic Nursing Adapting to an Ever-Changing Policy Landscape
Sunday, March 21 | 4:00-5:00 p.m. (ET)

Birch Bio 

Susan Birch, MBA, BSN, RN serves as director of the Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA), the state’s largest health care purchaser. Appointed by Governor Jay Inslee in January 2018, Birch oversees efforts to transform the health care system, helping ensure Washington residents have access to high-quality, affordable health care. HCA purchases care for nearly 2.5 million residents through Washington Apple Health (Medicaid), the Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB) Program, and the School Employees Benefits Board (SEBB) Program. HCA also is responsible for the state community-based behavioral health system.

She has led efforts to combat the opioid public health crisis through increased access to treatment and public education, eliminate hepatitis C through innovative value-based drug purchasing, and implement a Medicaid benefit for supportive housing and supported employment.

Before joining Governor Inslee’s Cabinet, Birch served as the executive director of the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing. She led the state’s successful implementation of the Affordable Care Act, which expanded coverage to more low-income Coloradans while focusing on cost containment and improved service delivery.

Rambur Bio 

Dr. Betty Rambur, Professor and Routhier Endowed Chair for Practice at the University of Rhode Island, has been a national and impactful leader in health policy and health reform for 25 years.   She is a recognized leader in the area of workforce redesign within alternative payment models, a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, and a member of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Health Policy Advisory Committee. In May of 2020, Dr. Rambur was appointed to the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) by the U.S. Comptroller General. Her particular focus is payment reform, reducing overtreatment and waste, cost containment, and reconceptualized models of care, including primary care nursing and e-connected/virtual care.

Previously, Dr. Rambur led North Dakota’s statewide health reform efforts that resulted in omnibus health reform legislation.  Her 2015 book, Health Care Finance, Economics, and Policy for Nurses, provides a user-friendly guide to support nurses’ effectiveness and contributions to organizations in rapid transition in response to evolving financial and reimbursement incentives  Her non-partisan blog, Health Care Matters:  A Guide For Voters and Concerned Citizens (www.bettyrambur.com), explores contemporary health policy issues.

 Dr. Rambur previously served as Professor and Founding Dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at the University of Vermont, Chair of the Division of Nursing at the University of Mary, Chair of the North Dakota Task Force addressing health care financing, and as a member of the National Quality Forum’s Cost and Resources Use Committee.

Wakefield Bio 

Dr. Mary K. Wakefield has focused her career on applying nursing expertise to health policy. She has worked in senior positions in the federal government, including eight years of service in the United States Senate as Chief of Staff to North Dakota senators. In 2015, she was appointed by President Obama to serve as the Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Health and Human Services, making her the highest-ranking nurse in the government and the first nurse to hold this senior executive position. She led strategic department-wide initiatives in key health policy areas with a particular focus on programs for underserved populations. Prior to this role, Dr. Wakefield served as the Administrator of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). As the first nurse serving in this senior executive position, she directed over 80 health programs ranging from organ transplantation to maternal and child health services. She currently serves as Visiting Professor at Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies as well as the University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing. Dr. Wakefield is a member of the National Academy of Medicine and co-chairs the Consensus Study on the Future of Nursing 2020-2030. She was the only nurse appointed to the IOM committee (formerly the Institute of Medicine [IOM]) that produced the landmark reports To Err is Human and Crossing the Quality Chasm. She co-chaired the IOM committee that produced the report Health Professions Education a Bridge to Quality and chaired the committee that produced the report Quality through Collaboration: Health Care in Rural America. Dr. Wakefield has served in nursing leadership positions on the boards of Sigma Theta Tau International and the Academy.

Pittman Bio 

Patricia Pittman is the Fitzhugh Mullan Professor of Health Workforce Equity at the Milken Institute School of Public Health, George Washington University. As director of the Mullan Institute for Health Workforce Equity, Professor Pittman built an extensive research enterprise focusing on policies that enable to health workforce to better address health equity, including protection of labor rights of health workers. Her current portfolio includes directing two HRSA-supported Health Workforce Research Centers, as well as several foundation-supported grants. Trained in medical anthropology and public health, she works with interdisciplinary teams in mixed methods designs. She has published over 50 peer-reviewed journal articles and has served as PI on over 40 research grants relating to health workforce policy. These most recently include a background paper commissioned by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) for the new National Academies of Medicine Committee on Nursing 2020-2030. She teaches Advanced Health Policy Analysis and Health Workforce Policy.

Dr. Victor Garcia

Founding Director, Trauma Services and Professor of Surgery and Pediatric at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Cincinnati, OH

Plenary: Impacting Community with Informed Advocacy 
Monday, March 22 | 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. (ET)


Garcia Bio 

Dr. Victor Garcia believes that healthcare, alone, does not guarantee the best outcome. What’s needed for healing is as much in the patient’s mind, spirit and body as it is in his skill as a surgeon. As a pediatric surgeon and clinician, he brings the latest knowledge (or evidence-base care) and the highest level of compassion to his patients. As an innovator and academic surgeon, he’s obsessed with leveraging what we learn about team science and cross-disciplinary care to disrupt — for the better — the art and science of surgery.

Some call this caring philosophy a holistic approach. He sees it as leveraging the best science has to offer with the hidden powers of each patient's willpower and mindfulness. By combining humor with mindfulness, he can share worlds hidden in plain sight with his patients and their parents.

In his practice, Dr. Garcia specializes in caring for children with congenital and acquired chest wall anomalies. At the Cincinnati Children’s Chest Wall Center, they evaluate, manage and repair structural chest wall conditions with some of the most extensive experience in the nation.

Dr. Ida "Ki" Moore

Sean Olson


Dr. Ida "Ki" Moore, Dean, University of Arizona College of Nursing, Tucson, AZ; and Sean Olson, CEO and Co-Founder, Renogize Professional Coaching

Session - Leading Inclusive Excellence
Tuesday, March 23 | 4:00-5:00 p.m. (ET)

Moore Bio 

The Anne Furrow Endowed Professor at the college and a long-standing member of the UA Cancer Center, Dr. Ida Moore has 25 years of research experience.

She has been principal investigator on extramurally funded clinical studies of the long-term effects of CNS-directed treatment including interventions to improve outcomes among children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and pre-clinical studies on mechanisms of CNS tissue injury and gene expression changes associated with chemotherapy.

Among many honors, she won the Winograd Professorship from the University of New Mexico in 2015; the UA Henry and Phyllis Koffler Prize for Scholarship in 2012; the Association of Pediatric Hematology Oncology Nursing’s Distinguished Researcher Award in 2012; and the Friends of the National Institute of Nursing Research Pathfinders Award in 2011.She now serves as the Dean of the University of Arizona, College of Nursing.

Olson Bio 

Sean Olson is an executive coach, author, and speaker with over 25 years of experience helping individuals and teams reach their full potential and effectiveness.  He has worked with officers, directors, and senior managers in start-ups to Fortune 500 companies.

He is the co-founder and CEO of Renogize Professional Coaching. Renogize provides executive coaching and leadership development to Universities and Companies throughout the United States.

He published his first book in December of 2019, This Is How I Role: 7 Strategies to Accelerate Your Leadership Growth and Promotability.

Emerging Solution Speakers:

Dr. Kupiri W. Ackerman-Barger

Associate Dean for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion; Associate Clinical Professor and Director of Faculty Development for Education and Teaching, Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing, University of California Davis, Sacramento, CA

Nursing and Health Equity: Structures, Institutions and Individuals
Friday, March 19 | 1:30-2:30 p.m. & 3:00-4:00 p.m. (ET)


Ackerman-Barger Bio 

Dr. Piri Ackerman-Barger is associate dean of Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion as well as an associate clinical professor at the University of California Davis Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing. She serves as a researcher for the Center for a Diverse Healthcare working to diversify the health professions pipeline. She also directs Faculty Development for Education and co-directs the Interprofessional Teaching Scholars Program for UC Davis Health. Over her career Dr. Ackerman-Barger has combined her expertise in nursing and education to advance a program of instruction on workforce diversity; education equity; and institutional sustainability that she has presented nationally to thousands of participants. Her research identifies strategies to cultivate the skills and knowledge that healthcare providers, educators, and leaders need to diversify the healthcare pipeline.

Dr. Tener Goodwin Veenema

Contributing Scholar and Senior Associate, Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, Baltimore, MD

Vaccines, Therapeutics, and Crisis Standards of Care: Winning the Fight Against COVID-19
Friday, March 19 | 1:30-2:30 p.m. & 3:00-4:00 p.m. (ET)


Goodwin Veenema Bio 

Tener Goodwin Veenema, PhD, MPH, MS, RN, FAAN, is a Contributing Scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security and Senior Associate in the Department of International Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. At the Center, she leads research projects to explore health systems optimization and healthcare worker protection during disasters and large-scale biological events. She also serves as an Associate Editor of the peer-reviewed journal Health Security (formerly Biosecurity and Bioterrorism) and co-chairs the COVID-19 Health Care Worker Protection Research Program at Johns Hopkins University. As an internationally recognized expert in disaster nursing and public health emergency preparedness, she has served as senior scientist to the DHHS Office of Human Services Emergency Preparedness and Response (OHSEPR), Department of Homeland Security, Veterans Affairs Emergency Management Evaluation Center (VEMEC), and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). An accomplished researcher,  Dr. Veenema has sustained career funding over 2.2 million dollars and is a member of the Forum on Medical and Public Health Preparedness, the Crisis Standards for Care Action Collaborative, and the Disaster Research Action Collaborative at the National Academy of Medicine. She is editor of Disaster Nursing and Emergency Preparedness for Chemical, Biological and Radiological Terrorism and Other Hazards, 4th Ed., the leading textbook in the field and developer of Disaster Nursing, a digital technology application (“App”) to provide decision support during disasters at the point of care. Dr. Veenema is an elected Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, the National Academies of Practice, and the Royal College of Surgeons, Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery, Dublin, Ireland.

 In 2013, Dr. Veenema was awarded the Florence Nightingale Medal of Honor (International Red Crescent) the highest international award in nursing for her professional service in disasters and public health emergencies. She received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award (2017), was selected Visiting Research Scholar to Torrens Disaster Institute (Australia, 2017) and New York University (2018,) and received a lifetime achievement award from Columbia University School of Nursing (2019). Dr. Veenema received master's degrees in nursing administration (1992), pediatrics (1993), and public health (1999) and a Ph.D. in health services research and policy (2001) from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. Dr. Veenema was a Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellow (2004-2007) and served as the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) 2017-18 Distinguished Nurse Scholar-in-Residence. She is currently senior consultant to AACN during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Dan Weberg

Head of Clinical Innovations, Trusted Health, San Francisco, CA Remove

The Sharing Economy, Rapid Cycle Innovation, and Disruption: Lessons for Academia from Start Ups and Innovators
Friday, March 19 | 1:30-2:30 p.m. & 3:00-4:00 p.m. (ET)


Weberg Bio 

Dr. Dan Weberg is an expert in nursing, healthcare innovation and human-centered patient design with extensive clinical experience in emergency departments, acute in-patient hospital settings and academia. He currently serves as the Head of Clinical Innovation for Trusted Health, the staffing platform for the healthcare industry, where he helps drive product strategy and works to change the conversation around innovation in the healthcare workforce.

Prior to joining Trusted, Dan spent seven years at Kaiser Permanente, where he held executive roles in nursing innovation, research, and technology strategy across eight regions, 38 hospitals, 60,000 nurses. He was also part of the founding faculty for the new Kaiser Permanente School of Medicine.

Dan is on the faculty at The Ohio State University College of Nursing and multiple innovation fellowship programs. He previously taught on nursing innovation and leadership at Arizona State University. He is on the editorial board for Nursing Administration Quarterly and has authored two dozen peer-reviewed articles and two textbooks, including Evidence Based Innovation Leadership for Health Professions and Leadership in Nursing Practice.

Dan earned his Bachelors in Nursing, and was in the first cohort to graduate from the Masters in Healthcare Innovation program at ASU, as well as the first-ever graduate of the PhD in Healthcare Innovation Leadership program at ASU. His clinical background is in Emergency and Trauma nursing at level 1 trauma centers in California and Arizona.

Dr. Louise Shelley

Omer L. and Nancy Hirst Endowed Chair and University Professor, Schar School of Policy and Government, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Human Trafficking and the Systems Impact of COVID-19
Friday, March 19 | 1:30-2:30 p.m. & 3:00-4:00 p.m. (ET)


Shelley Bio 

Dr. Louise Shelley is the Omer L. and Nancy Hirst Endowed Chair and a University Professor at Schar School of Policy and Government, George Mason University. She founded and directs the Terrorism, Transnational Crime and Corruption Center (TraCCC). She is a specialist on human trafficking and is presently working on this topic with support from NSF (National Science Foundation).  She is the author of and Human Trafficking: A Global Perspective (Cambridge 2010) as well as most recently Dark Commerce: How a New Illicit Economy is Threatening our Future (Princeton University Press, November 2018)  which was written while an inaugural Andrew Carnegie fellow and on a Rockefeller Foundation awardee at Bellagio. Professor Shelley served for six years on Global Agenda Councils illicit trade and organized crime of the World Economic Forum. Dr. Shelley appears frequently in the media, lectures widely at universities and multinational bodies and has testified repeatedly before Congress on human trafficking and financial crime. She is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations.