Emerging Leaders

If you are interested in nominating an emerging leader, submit an application below.
Submit an Emerging Leader Application

2024 Winners


Roula ShehadehRoula Shehadeh Joudi, PhD Student
American University of Beirut
Anticipated Graduation Date: Fall 2024-2025
Current Position: Graduate Teaching Assistant at Hariri School of Nursing, American University of Beirut

I worked as a Registered Nurse in the medical-surgical unit and later as a clinical nurse educator at Clemenceau Medical Center Affiliated with Johns Hopkins International- Beirut- Lebanon. During this time, I co-led several evidence-based practice programs including the palliative care program and the wound management program. I was directly involved in developing and revising clinical policies and procedures as well as training nurses. In 2020, and after attaining my MSN degree, I enrolled in the PhD program at the Rafic Hariri School of Nursing with a clear purpose; to enhance my skills in academic research, teaching, and healthcare administration. My background in nursing administration and staff development has further fueled my commitment to effecting positive change. Through this program, my experience has been transformative, equipping me to contribute significantly to the field of nursing. Post-graduation, my plans involve embarking on an academic journey. I aspire to contribute to nursing education, mentor future nurse practitioners, and engage in scholarly work. My dedication to investigating brownout among nurses represents a pioneering effort in the field. This research serves as the first step in a series of studies, currently in the phase of theory development. This foundational work is laying the groundwork for subsequent phases, which will involve mixed-method research and workforce management strategies. By delving into the complexities of brownout, I am poised to make a substantial impact on nursing practice, ultimately contributing to the development of evidence-based interventions and policies.


Rose Mary RodriguesRose Mary Rodrigues, MSN Student
California State University, Long Beach
Anticipated Graduation Date: May 2024
Current Position: Critical Care Nurse at Riverside Community Hospital

I have worked at Riverside Community Hospital for the past 19 years, and as a Critical Care Nurse Certified (CCRN) and Stroke Certified (SCRN) my desire is to learn and empower those around me with the knowledge I have. I love to share my knowledge as I give and receive reports, as part of the Professional Practice Committee or just sending information on learning events to my colleagues. The desire to learn and share knowledge has motivated me to participate and become a member of different associations and chapters, such as AACN, AANN, GNSA, and CANP. It has been an incredible experience creating a supportive network. During COVID, there was an event that changed the course of my life. My family and I were cycling, I fell, broke two ribs, and developed a large hemothorax. Surviving that accident made me appreciate life even more and made me realize that life is short, and we need to make the most of the time and opportunities we have. With a strong faith and a supportive and loving family, I have been able to excel academically. I have also been able to share my knowledge by participating in a Mission Trip to Dominican Republic last Summer. My experience in the master's program at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) has been the best academic experience of my life. CSULB has a culture of doing whatever is possible to make a student successful. They provide mentorship programs. Professors prepare students not only for academics, but to become professionals and engage in policy making. The in-person program provides opportunities to make friends and to interact with classmates and teachers. As I contemplate the finish line, I am excited for the future. I cannot wait to apply all the knowledge I have acquired during this program. I intend to deepen my knowledge in Neuroscience and to integrate the role of the NP with the MBA degree I had previously. I am ready to take on leadership positions, to be a change to my community and around the world.


Juwan LamarJuwan Lamar, Entry-Level MSN Student
Emory University
Anticipated Graduation Date: December 2024
Current Position: Full-time student

My decision to enroll into this nursing program was not made lightly. One of the main reasons that I chose to enroll is because I find it gratifying to help someone without the expectation of anything in return. The experience of seeing someone at their lowest point and helping them get back to their "normal" is an experience that I am looking forward to. Overall, my experience in this program has been nothing short of amazing. It is a fast-paced program and can get overwhelming at times, but I wouldn't change it for the world. Upon graduation in December, I plan to start my career in the Emergency Department with the long-term goal of working within an administrative role in the hospital such as a Nursing Manager, Chief Nursing Officer, or maybe even a hospital executive. The possibilities are endless, and I am looking forward to the journey.

Prior to Emory, Juwan attended Emmanuel University obtaining a degree in Psychology and Criminal Justice, while also being engaged in athletics through Cross Country and Track. After graduating with his bachelor’s, Juwan became a Police officer with the city of Atlanta. He served in this role for four years before deciding to enroll in nursing school.


Kadeeja S. MurrellKadeeja S. Murrell, MS
PhD Student
Arizona State University
Anticipated Graduation Date: Spring 2026
Current Position: Full-time student

I decided to enroll in the PhD program with the aim of advancing my education and honing the research skills that I acquired during my master’s program at Central Michigan University. Throughout my duration in this program, I have cultivated a diverse skill set, surpassing my initial expectations! I have also had the privilege of establishing valuable connections with esteemed professionals and, hopefully, future colleagues in the field. Upon completion of the program, my aspiration is to contribute to the filed as tenure-track faculty at a Research 1 university, furthering my research endeavors in the realm of Black maternal health care. My overarching life goal is to create significant changes in the approach to maternity care for Black women in the United States. 

Kadeeja received a seed grant from Edson College of Nursing for a study that seeks to understand how Black women perceive safety in maternal healthcare settings. She was elected to be the Engagement Coordinator for the Black Graduate Student Association. She also serves on the conference planning committee for the Maternal and Child Health Translational Research Team and serves as a grant reviewer for the Graduate Professional Student Association at Arizona State University.


Connie Jo HemeyerConnie Jo Hemeyer, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC, CNN-NP
Jacksonville University
Anticipated Graduation Date: December 2024
Current Position: Nurse Practitioner in the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension and Instructor of Medicine for the Department of Medicine at Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, FL
Program Director, Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant Nephrology Fellowship

Upon entering the MSN program, only a few were pursuing a terminal degree, and my primary focus was to swiftly embark on the journey to become a nurse practitioner. However, after fourteen years of experience in an academic medical institution and with a commitment to lifelong learning, I recognized the importance of education. For me, the true value lies in the process of attaining a DNP. I have enjoyed gaining a deeper understanding of quality improvement, the business of healthcare, and even statistics! Each phase of my doctoral studies has allowed me to integrate newfound skills into my professional responsibilities. As an example, applying statistical software knowledge gained in a recent course enabled me to dive deeper into a quality improvement project, resulting in an abstract acceptance for a national conference.

I am trying to stay present and enjoy the learning experience each class offers. My two passions are guiding individuals in their professional development and collaborating within effective teams to continuously enhance our healthcare delivery system, ensuring it aligns with the evolving needs of patients. Looking forward, I aim to leverage the knowledge acquired during this journey and continue its practical application in my professional endeavors.