About Us

Commission on Accreditation in Practice Transition Programs Commissioners

Dawna Cato

PhD, RN International Member at Large

Dawna L. Cato PhD., RN is the President of Transition to Professional Practice (TTPP) Nurse Consulting and the Vice President of Clinical Care Services for PreferUS Healthcare. Dr. Cato has 22 years of nursing experience. Her background includes a variety of nursing specialties to include clinical and leadership roles. Dr. Cato obtained her BSN and Master’s in the Science of Nursing with a specialization in Nursing Education from Grand Canyon University. In 2013, Dr. Cato received PhD with a specialization in Nursing Education from Capella University. Dr. Cato is involved in several local, state, and national organizations.

Dr. Cato is a local, national, and international presenter and publisher. She currently volunteers for many organizations to advance professional nursing. Dr. Cato currently holds a Member at Large position for the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) Commissioner on Accreditation. She is the President of the Arizona Nurses Association Special Interest Group Nurse Educators and board member of the Arizona Heart Foundation

Dr. Cato’s dissertation explored the relationship between a BSN Nurse Residency Program and evidence-based practice of the incumbent nursing workforce.</em >

Melinda Cooling

DNP, MBA, APRN, NEA-BC Advanced Practice Provider Executive

Melinda Cooling is the Vice President of Advanced Practice at OSF Healthcare.She started her career at OSF 20 years ago serving in clinical and leadership roles.She received her BSN from St Francis Medical Center College of Nursing.She later pursued education to become a Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) at University of Illinois.

Melinda began in practice as a FNP at the OSF Medical Group (OSFMG) Roanoke and Washington practice.In addition, she took an informal leadership role in the Peoria region for Advanced Practice at that time.As time progressed, she pursued her Masters of Business Administration in Health Care Administration, Nursing Education Teaching Certificate, and Doctoral degree in Nursing.She then became the Director of Advanced Practice for OSFMG Peoria, serving as interim for St Francis Medical Center for a short period of time as well prior to her appointment as Vice President.

She has been involved as a nursing educator for nursing at Saint Francis Medical Center College of Nursing, Bradley University, and Maryville University.

Melinda has experience in research serving as a principal investigator and co-investigator on several studies.She is a mentor for advanced practice nurses who are formally enrolled in DNP programs as well.From a national perspective, she is an advisory board member for Advanced Practice Provider Executives (APPex), a member of Illinois Society of Advanced Practice Nurses, American Association of Nurse Practitioners, and American Organization of Nurse Executives.She also sits on the thought leaders councils for Sullivan Cotter and Center for Advancing Provider Practices (CAP2) for advanced practice.

Angelica Jackson

BSN, ADN, PHN, RN Emerging Leader from an Accredited PTAP Program

I grew up in California my whole life. I currently work at the hospital I was born at. Providence St. Joseph medical center is where I got my first job as emergency room nurse. I currently am training as a charge nurse and I am currently getting my mobile intensive care nurse certification through the Los Angeles County. I have future aspirations to go into executive leader ship. I currently am getting my masters in healthcare administration and should be finished by spring of 2020. I love nursing and all the aspects of care. As I continue to grow into the nurse that I want to be: I realize that I am very much a nurse advocate and know that my calling is executive leadership. I currently serve as the nursing advancement and excellence Council chair at my hospital along with being the co-chair for my unit based council. I currently serve as a preceptor to new grads as well. I am looking forward to meeting all of you!

Jean Shinners

PhD, RN, CCRN Professional Education Organization Chair

Jean Shinners, PhD, RN-BC is the Executive Director at Ver sant Center for the Advancement of Nursing® (VCAN®). Jean has 40 years of nursing experience in a wide array of educational, clinical, and leadership positions. Dr. Shinners is the Lead Nurse Planner with Versant’s Provider Unit. Dr. Shinners has been active with the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) as an appraiser, on the accreditation review committee (ARC), and since 2012 on the Commission for Accreditation (COA). Dr. Shinners served as vice chair of the commission from 2015 thru 2017.

Dr. Shinners has presented and published both nationally and internationally in the areas of competency management and RNs in transition. This includes transition program design and development, preceptor education, and program outcomes. Dr. Shinners also speaks nationally in the area of continuing nursing education and professional development. In her current role, she is responsible for competency assessment strategies and practice transition outcomes and research.

An active leader in the Association for Nursing Professional Development (ANPD), Jean is certified in nursing professional development and was a chapter author: Application of the Nursing Professional Development: Scope and Standards of Practice. In Smith, C. M., & Harper, M. G. (Eds.). Leadership in nursing professional development: An organizational and systems focus. Dr. Shinners was also a member of the 2016 Nursing Professional Development (NPD) Scope and Standards Workgroup. She has been on several national workgroups to address advancing interprofessional continuing education. These include the Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Professions and the National Collaborative for Improving the Clinical Learning Environment.

Dr. Shinners holds a diploma from Milwaukee County General Hospital School of Nursing (1976), BSN and MSN degrees from Florida Atlantic University and a PhD from Capella University. Dr. Shinners is a Sigma Theta Tau Virginia Henderson Fellow and is the current associate editor for the Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing.

Janet Silvester

Pharm.D, MBA, FASHP Interprofessional Team Member

Janet A. Silvester, Pharm.D., M.B.A., FASHP, is Vice President of the Accreditation Services Office and is responsible for providing strategic direction for all ASHP accreditation programs and services.

Janet holds a B.S. in Pharmacy from the Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, a Pharm.D. from Creighton University and a Masters in Business from James Madison University. Janet spent 34 years in hospital practice and was Director of Pharmacy and Emergency services at Martha Jefferson Hospital in Charlottesville, Va.

Janet is past president of the Virginia Society of Health System Pharmacists, and Past president of the American Society of Health System Pharmacists. She is past recipient of the Virginia Health System Pharmacist of the Year award, the RD Anderson Distinguished Leadership award, and the Pharmacy Alumnus Service award from the Medical College of Virginia Alumni Association of Virginia Commonwealth University. Janet is also the recipient of the 2012 American Society of Health System Pharmacists Award for Distinguished Leadership in Health System Pharmacy Practice.

Lya M. Stroupe

DNP, APRN RN Residency Program Director Vice Chair

Dr. Lya M. Stroupe is the Manager of Nursing Research and Professional Development, Magnet® Program Director and the Transition to Practice Program Director at WVU Medicine-WVU Hospitals in Morgantown, WV. In addition to leading councils in the flagship hospital within WVU Medicine, Lya has led system wide initiatives that include implementation of care plans and patient education.

Lya has received grants for her research in pediatrics as well as projects that include nursing safety and the care for the veteran. She has been published in the Journal of Hospice & Palliative Nursing, the Journal of Nursing Administration and the Journal of Pediatric Nursing. She also serves on faculty in the West Virginia University Schools of Nursing and Medicine.

Dr. Stroupe currently serves as a Co-Chair for the Commission for Accreditation for the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). She serves as co-chair of the Elsevier Clinical Solutions Patient Engagement Editorial Board. Lya is a member of the WVU Institutional Review Board. She is the immediate past president of the Alpha Rho Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International as serves as a board member for WVONE.

Lya has been a presenter at local, state, national and international conferences. Lya also works as a pediatric nurse practitioner in the WVU Medicine Children’s Hospital and is involved in many service projects throughout the state of West Virginia for children, including the “Tomorrow is Mine” Camp. She also serves on the International Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Quilt Project Advisory Board.

Stroupe holds a BSN degree from West Virginia University and MSN and DNP degrees from the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston. Stroupe also has a Doctorate in Piano Performance as serves as an accompanist for recitals and is the principal pianist for the Ohio Valley Symphony. She is the Director of Music and Director of Children’s Education and Music at Wesley United Methodist Church in Morgantown, WV.

Michael Ward

BSN, RN Non-Acute Care Nurse Residency Director

Michael Ward MBA, BSN, RN is the Division Director of clinical onboarding and education for BAYADA Home Health Care, a national home care company. In addition to the residency program, Michael oversees the simulation program comprised of over fifty mid and high fidelity simulation labs. Mr. Ward served on the Content Expert panel for the PTAP program, prior to his appointment to the Board of Commissioners. Michael has been a registered nurse for over 30 years.

Michael has extensive nurse management experience across a variety of clinical environments. He was previously a Vice President and CNO for Osteopathic Medical Center in Philadelphia. He also served as National Director for a national registered nurse staffing agency. Prior to his current corporate position, he was the director of several home care service offices serving medically complex mechanically ventilated children.

Mr. Ward is a graduate of Einstein Medical Center School of Nursing and holds a BBA in Marketing from Temple University, a BSN from American Sentinel University, and a MBA in Health Administration from Philadelphia University. He is currently pursuing his MSN in Nursing Education. Mr. Ward also possesses a post graduate certificate in Nursing Leadership Excellence from Villanova University, and a certificate in Simulation Management from the University of Southern Indiana.

In addition to his work with the PTAP committee at the American Nurses Credentialing Center, Michael is a member of the Philadelphia Area Simulation Consortium, and served as host of this year’s annual symposium. Mr. Ward just ended a nine year appointment as an external advisory board member for the nursing home for the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, where he chaired the sub-committee for Heath Care and Ethics. He is also on the panel review board for Nursing Economics magazine.

Christine Young

MSN, MBA, RN, NEA-BC Chief Nursing Officer

Christine Young, MSN, MBA, RN, NEA-BC is the Vice President, Patient Services and Chief Nursing Officer at Akron Children’s Hospital in Akron, Ohio. Ms. Young has 26 years of nursing experience, with a focus on women’s and children’s health. She has served in a variety of nursing leadership roles for 19 years, including charge nurse, assistant head nurse, nurse manager, nurse director and currently chief nursing officer.

Under the direction of Ms. Young, the nurse residency program at Akron Children’s Hospital was accredited with distinction by the ANCC Practice Transition Accreditation Program in 2018. She was appointed in 2019 to serve on the Commission on Accreditation in Practice Transition Programs (COAPTP), representing the constituency of chief nursing officer in a hospital or healthcare setting.

Ms. Young has presented and published nationally in the areas of strategic planning for nurse staffing and nurse workforce diversity.This includes strategic planning for staffing that decreased premium labor costs significantly and improved the work environment for nurses. She has also presented on a strategic program to improve nurse workforce diversity by engaging nursing students prior to graduation. Ms. Young has also served as an abstract reviewer for the ANCC Magnet® Conference (2017)

Serving on the Board of Directors for the Ohio Organization of Nurse Executives, Ms. Young is the chairperson of the Communication Committee. She is also a member of the American Organization of Nurse Executives, the American College of Healthcare Executives and the Society of Pediatric Nursing.

Ms. Young holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biological Science from Bowling Green State University, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Ursuline College and a Master of Science in Nursing and Business Administration in Health Care Management from the University of Phoenix.She is also board certified through the ANCC as a Nurse Executive, Advanced.


Sheryl Cosme



Accreditation Program

Practice Transition Accreditation Program (PTAP)

Nursing Skills Competency Program (NSCP)

Meagan White


Sr. Operations Manager

Practice Transition Accreditation Program (PTAP)

Nursing Skills Competency Program (NSCP)

Stephanie Drown

Sr. Accreditation Program Analyst

Practice Transition Accreditation Program (PTAP)

Nursing Skills Competency Program (NSCP)

Josh Hinman

Sr. Accreditation Program Specialist

Practice Transition Accreditation Program (PTAP)

Nursing Skills Competency Program (NSCP