Donna Willenbrock, DNP, ANP-C

Candidate for Nomination Council

Campaign Message:

I am running for a position on the AANP Nomination Council. I believe that my experience on numerous boards coupled with my corporate experience make me an excellent candidate for this position. I will be fair and impartial and comply with the policies and procedures as set forth in the bylaws of AANP.

Biographical Statement
Campaign Flyer
Curriculum Vitae

Current Professional Position

Assistant Professor Hofstra Northwell School of Nursing and Owner of Thin Possible NP PLLC.

AANP/ACNP Leadership Experience

I have served on the board of the Nurse Practitioner Association of Long Island (NPALI) since 2007 mostly in the role of Finance Chair, where I have drawn from almost 20 years of experience in banking to manage our assets. As of January 2021, I will be President-elect to better serve our population. As a former chief securities compliance officer, I managed the board of 19 subsidiaries, giving me the skills to navigate a board. I have had up to 100 direct reports in my career, which allowed me to hone my skills in managing people as a team. I am currently the Nominations Chair for the AANP Journal Club of Huntington. Just recently, our state representative to AANP asked me to serve on the AANP Awards Committee. I have also served as President of a number of organizations over the years, which includes the American Society of Pain Management Nurses and Oncology Nurse Society local chapters. As Associate Director of Student Health and Counseling, I had 50 direct and indirect reports where I always had an open door policy for any issues and concerns. I believe that I always need to lead by example.

Biggest Challenge Facing NPs and How AANP Can Help

Nurse Practitioners still need to be recognized as the quality care providers that we are. I noticed, as did the rest of the country, that when the president's physician provider was speaking about his health, surrounded by the team taking care of him, a nurse practitioner was not a visible part of that team. In fact, when the president's provider was asked details related to his care he responded, "I don't know I'll have to ask the nurse!" This very visible event highlights how much work stills needs to be done to overcome the perceptions about nurse practitioners. We still need to address outdated practice guidelines across the country so we can all practice at the top of our licenses to address the many health disparities Americans experience. We need to change the social construct that only physicians can offer quality care. Our lack of progress in some states is still rooted in misogynistic beliefs and microaggressions that nurse practitioners face. We can work to support our nurse practitioner colleagues on ways to counter subtle sexism. We also need to develop and support more visible political champions.

Example of Initiative or Outcome of Leadership

I am a second career nurse. I spent almost 20 years in the corporate arena. I am comfortable in and out of a board room. Most of my corporate career was spent in compliance and I understand the importance of complying with laws and regulations that govern our actions. My education as a paralegal has enabled me to have a deeper understanding of how to interpret those same laws and regulations. As part of my responsibilities, I oversaw 19 corporate entities and their bylaws as a member of the board. This experience has allowed me to build teams that are effective in getting things done. Recently, in my role as Associate Director of Student Health and Counseling, I was able to increase access to care and started several initiatives with my other campus shareholders to decrease anxiety experienced by college students on campus. We initiated a screening for depression for every student that presented for care and were able to identify students at risk sooner and get them to see our psychiatric nurse practitioner earlier. I championed creating a safe and welcoming environment for our LGBTQ+ community to help remove barriers to care.

If Elected, I Propose to Advance the AANP Mission as Follows:

If elected to the nominations council I will do my best to continue to follow the AANP Mission and Strategic Plan to empower all nurse practitioners to the best of my ability. I think the strategies espoused in the Strategic Plan are excellent, and I would love to be part of the growth of our media plan by adding my business acumen.