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Fellows Program Announces 2022 Election Results

2022 FAANP election results EB header

Media Contact: Bryan Black

New leaders will begin their term of office on July 1.

AUSTIN, TEXAS — The American Association of Nurse Practitioners® (AANP) is pleased to share the results of the Fellows of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (FAANP) election. Effective July 1, the newly elected FAANP officers and committee members will be:

Member at Large

Tracy Hicks, DNP, FNP/PMHNP, CARN-AP, FIAAN, FAANP, EMBAc, is a clinic owner serving mental health, addiction and primary care needs and the inaugural program coordinator for Texas Christian University's psychiatric mental health nurse practitioners (NP) program. She holds a certification in addictions through the International Nursing Society on Addictions and is a fellow of the International Academy of Addictions Nursing. Hicks received a certification in diversity, equity and inclusion (DI) through Cornell University and is a licensed DI trainer. She has been appointed co-chair of the Texas Steering Committee and onto the board of directors for the American Academy of HIV Medicine and Texas Nurse Practitioners.

Nominations Committee Members

(Incumbent) Veronica Wilbur, Ph.D., APRN-FNP, CNE, FAANP, has been a family NP (FNP) for more than 26 years in roles that include faculty and patient care practice in primary care. She is currently an associate professor and FNP at West Chester University. In her role as an educator, she prepares future nursing leaders as nurse educators and adult gerontology clinical specialists in the Master of Science in Nursing and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) programs. Wilbur maintains a current FNP practice in Claymont, Delaware, in primary care and walk-in health care with special expertise in the management of patients with Type 2 diabetes. Her philosophy about patient and family care focuses on patient engagement.

Kevin Ballard, DNP, FNP, FAANP, is the senior director of Sanford Behavioral Health Center in Thief River Falls, Minnesota. His most outstanding contributions to nursing are in the implementation of evidence-based protocols at the clinical level and involvement in health policy initiatives at the local, state and national levels. He has been active in AANP as a State Representative and is a past Region 5 Director. Ballard is currently on faculty at Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions where he teaches graduate-level pathophysiology, scholarly project and FNP clinical courses.

Selection Committee Members

Kristine C Diggins, DCC, CNE, FAANP, DNP, MBA, has worked as an FNP in direct patient care for 10 years in both family practice and geriatrics. As adjunct NP faculty, Diggins was awarded the Certified Nurse Educator credential in 2014. She works in retail health care leadership through training and administration of NPs and PAs nationally. Her current position involves the development and leadership of the practice of clinicians in the convenient care industry. Diggins is a freelance author who writes regular columns on health for various nursing journals. She is a strong advocate of the NP profession who plans to continue promoting this role throughout her career.

Honey Mone’t Jones, DNP, ACNP-BC, MBA, FAANP, FCCM, is an acute care NP (ACNP) for pulmonary and critical care medicine at the University of North Carolina. Jones is committed to improving the process and delivery of inpatient care and advancing the impact of NPs in acute and critical care settings nationally. Her contributions to the NP community led to the development of the first AANP Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, where she was appointed as the first chair and co-authored AANP’s position statement for diversity.

Catherine Gaines Ling, PhD, FNP-BC, FAANP, is a nurse scientist, FNP and educator focusing on improving access to quality, primary care with an emphasis on military families. Lang is actively involved in the investigation of the structure of primary care, non-opioid pain relief and innovative strategies to engage students. She maintains her 26-year career as a practicing FNP and is currently the FNP track coordinator at the Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing.

George Byron Peraza-Smith, DNP, APRN, AGPCNP-C, GNP-BC, GS-C, CNE, FAANP, is the department chair of the DNP and advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) online programs at South University. He has been a gerontological NP for more than 19 years and has an active clinical practice for underserved older adults who reside in the community and in long-term care. Peraza-Smith served on an expert panel for gerontological specialist proficiencies and was one of seven recognized experts who authored the Gerontological Advanced Practice Nurses Association Consensus Statements on Proficiencies for the APRN gerontological specialist. He enjoys his role as an energetic, enthusiastic educator mentoring the next generations of innovative, tech-savvy NPs.


The American Association of Nurse Practitioners® (AANP) is the largest professional membership organization for nurse practitioners (NPs) of all specialties. It represents the interests of the more than 355,000 licensed NPs in the U.S. AANP provides legislative leadership at the local, state and national levels, advancing health policy; promoting excellence in practice, education and research; and establishing standards that best serve NPs' patients and other health care consumers. As The Voice of the Nurse Practitioner®, AANP represents the interests of NPs as providers of high-quality, cost-effective, comprehensive, patient-centered health care. To locate an NP in your community, visit For more information about NPs, visit For COVID-19 information from AANP, visit

The Fellows of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (FAANP) program was established in 2000 and is dedicated to the advancement of NPs and the high-quality health care they provide. Recognized as NP leaders who have made outstanding contributions to NP education, policy, clinical practice and research, AANP Fellows volunteer their expertise as reviewers, topical experts, committee members, journal contributors, mentors and more. FAANP strives to support AANP’s mission, develop NP leaders of the future and advance the NP role. Learn more at

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