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Patricia A. Grady, PhD, RN, FAAN was appointed Director, NINR, on April 3, 1995. She earned her undergraduate degree in nursing from Georgetown University in Washington, DC. She pursued her graduate education at the University of Maryland, receiving a master's degree from the School of Nursing and a doctorate in physiology from the School of Medicine.


An internationally recognized researcher, Dr. Grady's scientific focus has primarily been in stroke, with emphasis on arterial stenosis and cerebral ischemia. She was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 1999 and is a member of several scientific organizations, including the Society for Neuroscience, the American Academy of Nursing, and the American Neurological Association. She is also a fellow of the American Stroke Association.


In 1988, Dr. Grady joined NIH as an extramural research program administrator in the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) in the areas of stroke and brain imaging. Two years later, she served on the NIH Task Force for Medical Rehabilitation Research, which established the first long-range research agenda for the field of medical rehabilitation research. In 1992, she assumed the responsibilities of NINDS Assistant Director. From 1993 to 1995, she was Deputy Director and Acting Director of NINDS. Dr. Grady served as a charter member of the NIH Warren Grant Magnuson Clinical Center Board of Governors.


Before coming to NIH, Dr. Grady held several academic positions and served concurrently on the faculties of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and School of Nursing.


Dr. Grady has authored or co-authored numerous articles and papers on hypertension, cerebrovascular permeability, vascular stress, and cerebral edema. She is an editorial board member of the major stroke journals. Dr. Grady lectures and speaks on a wide range of topics, including future directions in nursing research, developments in the neurological sciences, and Federal research opportunities.


Dr. Grady has been recognized with several prestigious honors and awards for her leadership and scientific accomplishments, including the first award of the Centennial Achievement Medal from Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies, being named the inaugural Rozella M. Schlotfeld distinguished lecturer at the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University, and receiving the honorary degree of Doctor of Public Service from the University of Maryland. Dr. Grady was named the Excellence in Nursing Lecturer by the Council on Cardiovascular Nurses of the American Heart Association. In 2005, Dr. Grady received Doctor of Science, Honoris Causa degrees from the Medical University of South Carolina and Thomas Jefferson University, and Columbia University School of Nursing honored her with its prestigious Second Century Award for Excellence in Health Care. In 2008, Dr. Grady received a Doctor of Science, Honoris Causa degree from the State University of New York Downstate Medical Center.


Dr. Grady is a past recipient of the NIH Merit Award and received the Public Health Service Superior Service Award for her exceptional leadership.


Regina Cunningham, PhD, RN, AOCN, FAAN 

Dr. Cunningham is an accomplished nurse executive, scientist, and educator who has made impactful contributions to advancing nursing practice and clinical care. Cunningham is currently Chief Nurse Executive/Associate Executive Director at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Adjunct Professor and Assistant Dean for Clinical Practice at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Nursing.   She has extensive experience in the organization and delivery of nursing service across the care continuum, with particular expertise in the utilization of nursing resources in care delivery systems. In her capacity as Chief Nurse Executive, she has responsibility for a broad array of strategic and operational functions, including the development of professional practice standards, oversight of quality, and strengthening the integration of scholarship within the practice of nursing. Her research interests include the effect of nursing on outcomes, clinical trials, and innovative models of care delivery.


She has been funded on numerous research initiatives and currently serves as Principal Investigator on a $1.7 million award from the National Cancer Institute focused on developing strategies to improve accrual to clinical trials. Dr. Cunningham received a baccalaureate degree from The College of Mount St. Vincent, a Master of Arts in the Delivery of Nursing Service from New York University, a Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania, and then completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Yale University. She was selected as a Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellow in 2006 and was inducted as a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing in 2014.


Rosemary C. Polomano, PhD, RN, FAAN is Professor of Pain Practice at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, and Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care (Secondary) at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia. She earned her PhD from the University of Maryland School of Nursing in Baltimore, and her Master’s and Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Laboratory Research at Hahnemann University in Philadelphia. She is a fellow in the American Academy of Nursing.


Her programs of research focus on instrument development and testing of patient-reported outcome measures, advancing the translation of pain science to practice, and post-surgical and cancer-related pain and acute and chronic pain in military service members and Veterans. Dr. Polomano has participated in several national advisory boards and panels, and has authored several evidence-based guidelines and expert consensus reports on pain management. She has lectured throughout the country on pain-related topics. She has been involved with numerous research projects and has authored or co-authored more than 80 peer-reviewed articles and 30 book chapters in nursing and medical textbooks. Dr. Polomano has received numerous scholarships and national research awards for her investigations related to acute and chronic pain management.


Brianna Morgan, MSN, RN, AGPCNP received her BA, BSN, and MSN from the University of Pennsylvania. Her nursing background is in critical care, working as a Clinical Nurse at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in the Neuro-Trauma Intensive Care Unit. She has presented her research on moral distress in critical care nurses at the Annual Assembly of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine & the Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association. Brianna is currently working as a Clinical Research Nurse Coordinator at the Penn Frontotemporal Degeneration Center where her research has been published in Neuropsychologia and Brain and Language.  


Elise Tarbi, MSN, RN, AGPCNP received her BSN and MSN from the University of Pennsylvania. Her nursing background is in critical care, working at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in the Medical Intensive Care Unit. She has presented her research on moral distress in critical care nurses at the Annual Assembly of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine & the Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association. She has published research in Biological Psychology and the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience among other journals. 


Linda Hatfield, PhD, RN, NNP-BC received her BS, MS and PhD from The Pennsylvania State University. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Human Molecular Genetics from the National Institute of Nursing Research. Dr. Hatfield is an Assistant Professor of Evidence-based Practice, a board certified neonatal nurse practitioner, and the faculty advisor to the School of Nursing’s Neonatal Nurse Practitioner program at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Nursing. As Director of Research and Evidence-based Practice at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia, Dr. Hatfield’s clinical responsibilities facilitate direct care nurse’s awareness and understanding of nursing research and evidence based practice.


Dr. Hatfield’s program of research investigating the analgesic properties of behavioral and environmental interventions, the genetic association between treatment interventions and infant pain physiology, and the long-term effects of undermanaged pain in infants and young children has received national and international recognition. She is a member of numerous scholarly and professional organizations and regularly reviews manuscripts for national and international pediatric and pain management journals. Dr. Hatfield teaches advanced research methods and lectures on pediatric pain management and molecular genetics in undergraduate and graduate courses at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Nursing.


Connie Ulrich, PhD, RN, FAAN conducts both conceptual and empirical bioethics research, nationally and internationally.  Her publications in clinical ethics focus on clinician moral distress, ethics education, and patient-provider communication.  Her work has shown the importance of an ethical climate as well as ethics preparedness and confidence of nurses and other providers related to their overall job satisfaction and intention to remain in their positions. Her research ethics publications include work on the risks and benefits in cancer clinical trials and how cancer patients view their research participation, respondent burden in research, informed consent, international ethical issues, and scientific integrity. She is currently working with colleagues from Dartmouth and Penn to develop bioethics scholarship in Tanzania among nurses and physicians.  In addition, her work has advanced empirical bioethics instrumentation. She has published in medical, nursing and bioethics journals that include the Hastings Center Report, American Journal of Bioethics, Pediatrics, Nursing Research, and Journal of Advanced Nursing. She has also commented in the public media on ethical issues that impact nursing care, including the Washington Post, the New York Times, USA Today, and the Los Angeles Times.  She is the recipient of funding from various organizations, including the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Nursing Research), the Pennsylvania Health Research Formula Funds Research Grant/Oncology Nursing Society, the RWJ: Future of Nurse Scholars program and others. 


Dr. Ulrich is currently the Lead Co-Chair of the Bioethics Expert Panel, American Academy of Nursing of which she reestablished in 2013.  She also currently serves on several Data and Safety Monitoring Boards appointed by the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Ulrich is the editor of Nursing Ethics in Everyday Practice. Indianapolis, IN:  Sigma Theta Tau International.


Dr. Ulrich teaches Bioethics to the second-degree nursing students in the School of Nursing and serves on several doctoral student committees.  She also co-teaches with her bioethics colleagues in the School of Medicine.  Dr. Ulrich is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and a Salzburg Global Fellow. 


Jessica Rearden, PhD, RN is a postdoctoral fellow in the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing’s Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research. She received a BSN from Cedar Crest College and an MS and PhD from the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Rearden’s clinical background is in oncology nursing. She has worked as a bone marrow transplant nurse at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and as a clinical research nurse and clinical research nursing supervisor in the Abramson Cancer Center. Her research focuses on the influence of nursing care on cancer patient outcomes, eliminating cancer health disparities and improving opportunities for cancer clinical trial enrollment among under-represented groups. Dr. Rearden’s dissertation, titled “Examining Opportunity for Cancer Clinical Trial Participation Among Under-represented Groups” was supported by the National Institute of Nursing and the American Nurses Foundation/Council for the Advancement of Nursing Science.


Marilyn (Lynn) Stringer, PhD, RN, FAAN is a Professor Emeritus in Women’s Health Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania.  In her role she advances the missions of both the School of Nursing and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania through the unique integration of teaching, practice, and scholarship.  Dr. Stringer’s has be recognized globally for her clinical scholarship that focuses on the promotion of a healthy pregnancy and the reduction of preterm births for high-risk women.  She  has changed the paradigm of advanced practice nursing with the incorporation of a highly sophisticated method of fetal assessment, limited obstetrical ultrasonography (LOBU), known to improve birth outcomes by reducing infant morbidity and mortality. In addition, Dr. Stringer is the Associate Editor of the Journal of Women’s Health, Obstetrics, and Neonatal Nursing. 


Nancy M. Albert, PhD, CCNS, CHFN, CCRN, NE-BC, FAHA, FCCM is associate chief nursing officer for Cleveland Clinic’s Office of Research and Innovation, and a clinical nurse specialist in Cleveland Clinic’s Kaufman Center for Heart Failure. With extensive experience and expertise, Dr. Albert’s program of research is in heart failure, where she treats patients and is an administrator and scientist in an advanced heart failure disease management program.


Throughout her career, Dr. Albert has been influential in the healthcare industry actively volunteering on the steering committees, work groups and task forces of many national healthcare organizations. She has published more than 160 peer-reviewed articles in nursing and medical journals, written book chapters and is a national and international presenter. Additionally, she has received several professional awards and recognitions, holds three national nursing certifications, is a board-certified nurse executive and is an adjunct associate professor at two Ohio-based schools of nursing, and a full professor at Aalborg University in Denmark. 


Aditi Rao, PhD, RN is a Nurse Scientist and the Magnet Program Director at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to beginning in this role, Dr. Rao completed her doctorate in nursing at the University of Pennsylvania, mentored by Dr. Lois Evans. Her dissertation research examined the influence of network characteristics and support structures on turnover intention among nursing home directors of nursing. Dr. Rao has worked in administrative and clinical roles in long-term and acute care settings. Her research areas of interest include workforce development and the care of older adults. She is currently a co-investigator on a HRSA-funded project that aims to develop a nurse-led interprofessional collaborative practice model to strengthen care delivery for older adults in the acute care setting. She began her nursing career as a clinical nurse at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.


Angela R. Coladonato, DNP, RN, NEA-BC, the Senior Vice President/CNO of The Chester County Hospital, received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Villanova University, her Master of Science in Nursing degree from Widener University, and is Board Certified in Advanced Nursing Administration.  She received her Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) from Thomas Jefferson University in 2015.


Angela is an experienced Healthcare Administrator with over 30 years of experience in a variety of settings.  She is a strong leader with a reputation of integrity, who has built cohesive teams and participated in strategic planning and clinical program development.


Angela has been in her role at The Chester County Hospital since September 2006.  She has worked with the Nursing Team to develop and role out the Annual Nursing Department Strategic Plan.  Under her guidance, the Nursing Department has developed a Shared Decision-Making Councilor Model incorporating unit-based councils as well as various other councils to meet the professional needs of the staff. The Chester County Hospital achieved Magnet Designation on November 20, 2014 under Angela’s leadership.


Angela published an article in “The Business of Caring,” entitled “Dealing with the Patient Sitter Dilemma.”  The article highlighted an innovative program that she put in place at The Chester County Hospital.  Since the program has been in place, both staff and patient satisfaction have increased and it has also proven to have a financial benefit to the hospital.


Angela is an active member of the following professional organizations- American Organizations of Nurse Executives, American College of Healthcare Executives and the Pennsylvania Organization of Nurse Leaders in which she is on the Practice Committee of the local chapter.


Angela is also active in her community; she has recently served on the Board of Directors of the West Chester Area YMCA.


Megan Halladay Bevan, BSN, RN received her Associate in Applied Science – Nursing degree from Delaware County Community College and went on to receive her BSN from Thomas Jefferson University in 2013.  Her nursing background is in Liquid Oncology, working as a Clinical Nurse II at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania on Rhoads 3.  Additionally, Megan received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a Minor in Mathematics from Elizabethtown College in 2004.  Megan is currently a co-investigator on the Nurse Communication Leonard Davis Institute Research Study, exploring patient experiences communicating with nurses while hospitalized at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. 


Under the guidance of HUP’s Nurse Ethicist Mary Walton, MSN, MBE, RN Director of Patient/Family Centered Care, Megan and her Ravdin 9 nursing colleague, Jackie Strube, collaborated on a Nurse Residency Project to drive the HCAHPS metric: “How often did Nurses Listen Carefully to You”.  The evidence-based intervention will be piloted this Fall on Rhoads 3 under Megan’s leadership.


Angela Piech, MSN, RN, CCRN completed her Baccalaureate in Nursing Science summa cum laude with honors from Syracuse University in 2002 after completing a qualitative study on the self-perceived ability of the graduate nurse to handle patient death.  After presenting her findings to faculty, she moved on to NYC and began working on a bone marrow transplant unit at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.  In 2005 she began working in the Medical Intensive Care Unit at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.  She recently completed a Masters in Nursing Science with a focus in Nursing Education and Faculty Role, and now serves as an Adjunct Faculty at Drexel University. She has consistently dedicated herself to her fellow nurses: working to create an environment where they are at their best for their patients.  Angela was recently recognized for these efforts when she was awarded the Joan-Bretschneider Shared Governance Leadership Award.


Rebecca L. Trotta, PhD, RN is the Director of Nursing Research and Science at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.  In this role, Dr. Trotta oversees nursing research initiatives and provides leadership for advancing nursing research capacity and the translation of evidence into practice.  Dr. Trotta received her doctorate in nursing at the University of Pennsylvania, and her dissertation focused on palliative care for frail older adults in the nursing home setting.   Prior to receiving her doctorate, Dr. Trotta practiced as a geriatric nurse practitioner and a clinical nurse in cardiac intermediate care.


Dr. Trotta’s program of research focuses on care of older adults in the acute care setting.  She is currently the Principal Investigator on a $1.5 M grant from the Health Resources Administration aimed at developing a nurse-led interprofessional care model to address the needs of older adults in the acute care setting.  

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