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2016-2017 AAHFN Board of Directors

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Executive Committee:


Cynthia Bither Cynthia Bither
Washington, DC

Cindy Bither is the Chief NP for Inpatient Advanced Heart Failure Program at the Medstar Washington Hospital Center in Washington, DC. She did her undergraduate nursing at the University of Vermont and her MSN and Adult NP were from George Mason University in VA. After working a few years as an NP, she took the Acute Care NP exam and grandfathered into the specialty. She spent the beginning of her career as a Med-Surg ICU nurse, where she came to love the heart transplant population. After graduation from GMU, she went to work at the Hospital Center as a Cardiac Surgical NP. When the chance came up to work with the heart failure / heart transplant population, she jumped at the opportunity and is still there 17 years later. In the midst of that, she has also taken a special interest in the Mechanical Circulatory Support population.

She considers herself a bedside clinician who has a true love of patient care. Her publications have been few but her hands on experience has made her a popular speaker in the area of hemodynamics, MCS and ultrafiltration. Her job satisfaction comes from the time spent with patients and their family. She feels honored that she can help her patients in all spectrums of life, from a new start (transplant) as well as helping them to a dignified end.

Her memberships include AAHFN, ISHLT, HFSA and ACC. She has received the award for Clinical Excellence at her institution and is a member of the Integrated Heart Failure Task Force for the Medstar Hospital System.

Lisa Rathman Lisa Rathman
President Elect
Lancaster, PA

Lisa Rathman is the lead nurse practitioner of The Heart Group of Lancaster General Health Heart Failure Program in Lancaster, PA.

Lisa developed the outpatient heart failure program at The Heart Group in 1998. In 2001, she was a member of the core team that developed the inpatient heart failure program at Lancaster General Hospital.

Lisa earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Delaware in 1990, followed by a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania in 1996, with an Adult Critical Care Nurse Practitioner specialty. She is board certified as an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner. Lisa also serves as clinical associate faculty at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the past secretary and one of the founding members of the American Association of Heart Failure Nurses. She is past chair of the publication committee of the American Association of Heart Failure Nurses. Currently, she is the treasurer for the American Association of Heart Failure Nurses. She is a member of the Heart Failure Society of America, American College of Cardiology, American College of Nurse Practitioners, Sigma Theta Tau, and the American Association of Critical Care Nurses.

Over the past 15 years, Lisa has published numerous peer-reviewed journal articles and abstracts. In addition, she lectures locally, nationally and internationally on various heart failure topics.

Sita S. Price
Orlando, FL

Sita Price is a nurse practitioner and heart failure program coordinator for the Orlando Health Heart Institute, where she provides care to heart failure patients, both inpatient and outpatient at Orlando Regional Medical Center, as well as continues program development for the heart failure programs at the various adult hospitals within Orlando Health. She is the liaison with the University of Florida and Shands for referral of all advanced HF patients and has been responsible for the development of the Shared Care program for Orlando Health. Her previous experience includes: care of the open heart surgery patient in a cardiovascular ICU, unit based educator for cardiac surgery step-down, clinical specialist for CVICU, and nurse practitioner for interventional cardiology. 

She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science and Doctorate of Nursing Practice at the University of Central Florida in Orlando, FL. She is certified as an FNP-BC from AACN and a CHFN from AAHFN. 

Sita is the past chair of the Advocacy Committee for AAHFN. She is an active member of HFSA, ACC and AANP. She has been involved several cardiology research projects and has contributed to numerous publications. In addition to speaking on many cardiovascular topics, Price helped produce a patient education video for cardiac patients undergoing angioplasty or coronary artery bypass grafting. She is actively involved in the American Heart Association’s Go Red campaign.

Linda Wick Linda Wick
Minneapolis, MN

Linda Wick is a Nurse Practitioner in the heart failure program at the University of Minnesota, as well as the Sr. Director of Ambulatory Nursing at the University of MN Health. Linda previously led the Essentia Heart Failure Program for 10 years. Under her leadership, the Heart Failure program at Essentia Health became a Nationally Recognized Program for their outcomes achieved.

Linda has worked in cardiology for the majority of her career. First in the ICU setting as a staff nurse, then after obtaining her nurse practitioner license, she worked in primary care for 2 years and in nephrology for 6 years before returning to cardiology. She is certified by AAHFN as a CHFN.

Linda has been involved in research specific to heart failure and women’s heart disease.

She is a charter member of AAHFN and has served 2 terms on the annual meeting committee, 2 years on the nominations committee. She has served as co-chair for the local AHA chapter "Go Red for Women” annual event. She has served 2 years as a director of AAHFN.

Linda obtained her B.A. in nursing from the College of St. Scholastica. Her M.S. in nursing from the University of Minnesota. She has lectured locally at the College of St. Scholastica in the graduate nursing program for the past 15 years. She is an invited speaker at the national level specific to disease management, heart failure and the use of technology in managing chronic illness. She volunteers her time at a free clinic in Minneapolis which is staffed by students from the Universityof Minnesota. She also volunteers as a preceptor for students in an interdisciplinary professional development class at the University of Minnesota.

Kelly Stamp, PhD, ANP-C, RN, FAHA, CHFN-K
Chestnut Hill, MA

Kelly Stamp, PhD, ANP-C, RN, FAHA, is an associate professor at the William F. Connell School of Nursing at Boston College. She is AANP certified as an adult nurse practitioner. Her scholarly expertise is in developing and testing nurse-coached interventions that promote the self-care behaviors of older adults with heart failure and heart failure with preserved ejection fraction. Dr. Stamp’s program of research incorporates the foundation of nursing science and synthesized knowledge from other disciplines to explore, develop, and test ways to help older adults take partnership in managing the self-care of their chronic illness and to improve their psychological outcomes and quality of life. Her research has been funded to test the feasibility of nurse-coached interventions and she has been recognized as a Fellow of the American Heart Association for her contribution to cardiovascular nursing science. Dr. Stamp is a regional and national leader in heart failure self-care, nursing science, and intervention development. She is a part of the National Hartford Center of Gerontological Nursing Excellence at the Connell School of Nursing, holds a faculty nurse scientist appointment at Brigham and Women’s Medical Center and Massachusetts General Hospital and has a collaborative research relationship with Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

Dr. Stamp has been a member of AAHFN since 2009 and served as Chair of the Membership and Area Representatives Committees from 2011-2015, is the current President of the Alpha Chi Chapter through Sigma Theta Tau International Nursing Honor Society, and a Cardiovascular Complex Patient and Family Care Committee Member for the American Heart Association, a member of HFSA and PCNA.

Dr. Stamp has authored and co-authored numerous publications. She has been a speaker nationally and internationally and serves as a reviewer for numerous peer-reviewed journals. Dr. Stamp received her BSN from Southeast Missouri State University and her MS and PhD from the University of South Florida.

Kimberly Nelson Kimberly Nelson
Fredericksburg, VA

Kimberly has been caring for heart failure patients for over nineteen years. Currently, she is a Clinical Nurse Specialist for Cardiothoracic Surgery Progressive Care Unit at Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center. Her responsibility as an expert clinician is to partner with patients and families on plan of care and provide education. In 2011, she developed and currently still facilitates a weekly Hopeful Hearts support group for HF/MCS/Transplant patients and families to assist patients with promoting wellness/self-care and coping with chronic illness and hospitalization. Kimberly educates staff throughout the organization on care and management of the HF/MCS/Transplant patient. On the organizational level, she is involved with improving systems of care and outcomes for these patients by developing standards, guidelines and policies. She helped develop a plan for education and training for staff that traveled off of the unit with the Mechanical Circulatory Support (MCS) population.

Kimberly has been involved with the AAHFN Heart Failure Disease Management Task Force, member of the Education Committee, and was an Item Writer for the CHFN examination. In addition to AAHFN, she has been involved with the Virginia Action Coalition, National Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists, Virginia Association of Clinical Nurse Specialists, and Medical Ambassadors Serving Him through Healthcare (MASH).

Beth Towery Davidson Beth Towery Davidson
Nashville, TN

Beth Towery Davidson is the Director of the Heart Failure Disease Management Program at TriStar Centennial Medical Center in Nashville, TN. She is establishing a regional heart failure network throughout the TriStar Health system and directs daily operations of all cardiovascular specialty clinics, including Heart Failure, Hypertension, and Structural Heart Disease.

She is involved with a national work group - "Heart Failure Discharge Initiative (HEFDI)”. This group is developing tangible tools which can positively impact the continuum of care for heart failure patients, and potentially, reduce admissions. Some of those strategies include smart phone applications, provider education/webinars and, discharge teaching tools and techniques.

Beth is an AAHFN charter member and has been very active on several committees, such as the Nominations Committee, Membership Committee, Patient Education Committee, and special projects as requested.

She has authored and co-authored several publications including articles for AAHFN online CEs, and most recently, was a contributing author for the AAHFN Advanced Heart Failure textbook. She is a frequent speaker at many local and national venues.

In addition to AAHFN, Beth is a member of the Middle Tennessee Advanced Practice Nurses, American Association of Critical Care Nurses, Sigma Theta Tau International, Heart Failure Society of America and a founding member of the Middle Tennessee Heart Failure Journal Club. Beth received the 2014 March of Dimes Nurse of the Year award for Advanced Practice and the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing Alumni Award for Clinical Achievement in 2007. She earned her BSN from Western Kentucky University, her MSN from Vanderbilt University, and in 2007 completed her DNP from University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center.

Carolyn Miller Reilly, PhD, RN, CHFN, FAHA


Atlanta, GA 

Carolyn was the Editor of AAHFN’s newsletter, The Connection, from 2010-2012. She also served as chair of patient education committee, and as a member of the research committee. Beyond her work with AAHFN, Carolyn has served in multiple capacities at both the local and national level for AACN, AHA, PCNA, Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI), and Southern Nursing Research Society (SNRS) for the past 25+ years. At present, she is the Chair of Membership and Communications for the Cardiovascular and Stroke Nursing Committee of the American Heart Association, serves on the program committee for SNRS, and is a grant/abstract/scholarship reviewer for AACN, AHA, SNRS, and STTI. Carolyn has also participated in various NIH/ NCI taskforces/workgroups.

Marilyn A. Prasun
Immediate Past President 
Decatur, IL

Dr. Marilyn Prasun is a Clinical Nurse Specialist, researcher and coordinator of the Heart Failure Disease Management program at Memorial Medical Center, Springfield, IL. Her primary responsibilities in the Heart Failure Disease Management program are to work with patients transitioning home following hospitalization and managing patients that require additional assistance to reduce heart failure hospitalization. She has worked with hospitalized cardiac patients as well as outpatients for the past 20 years as an advanced practice nurse. She also leads research initiatives to examine heart failure patient outcomes. In addition, she also serves as adjunct faculty in the School of Nursing at Illinois State University where she teaches in the graduate nursing program. 

Dr. Prasun has served as primary investigator and co-investigator for a number of clinical studies. Areas of research interest include; management of atrial fibrillation, diuretic titration and fluid management of HF patients, patient education and adherence to treatment recommendations, quality of life and nurses’ knowledge of evidence-based practice. She has published in various journals including: Heart & Lung, Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, Journal of Nursing Management, Journal of Cardiac Failure and Circulation. She was the 2002 recipient of the American Heart Association Martha N. Hill New Investigator of the Year Award, sponsored by the Council on Cardiovascular Nursing for her research regarding self-care and diuretic titration in heart failure patients. 

Marilyn has been active in many professional organizations. She is active in the Illinois Society of Advanced Practice Nurses where she has served as a past member of the Board of Directors and regional chairperson. In 2007, she was inducted as a fellow into the American Heart Association and Council on Cardiovascular Nursing. She is a charter member of the American Association of Heart Failure Nurses (AAHFN) where she has presented at past meetings and served as the chairperson of the research committee

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