East Tennessee State University (ETSU) invites applications and nominations for an experienced, creative, student-focused, and dynamic leader to serve as Dean of the College of Nursing. We seek a visionary who will foster the College’s leadership role in the state and nation as they lead a dedicated faculty in their quest for innovation and excellence in education, research, and clinical practice.

The incoming Dean will become an integral member of the ETSU Health leadership team, which encompasses the educational, clinical, and research pursuits of the five colleges in the ETSU Academic Health Sciences Center. These colleges include the James H. Quillen College of Medicine, the Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy, the College of Clinical and Rehabilitative Health Sciences, the College of Nursing, and the College of Public Health. Together, they enroll 4,000 students and offer 35 different degree programs, including 10 doctoral degrees, and have achieved national recognition for their interprofessional education programs and practice partnerships spanning more than three decades. With a commitment to preparing graduates to practice in rural and underserved areas, ETSU Health is on the front lines of building the future healthcare workforce.

The College of Nursing is the largest nursing program in Tennessee, offering BSN, MSN, DNP, AND PhD programs with almost 1,000 students enrolled. All eligible programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. As part of the faculty practice network, the College is responsible for 7 nationally recognized nurse-managed clinics, one of which became the nation's first certified Rural Health Clinic to be administered by a College of Nursing.

Roles and Responsibilities

ETSU seeks a passionate nurse leader who demonstrates respect for the complex nature of interprofessional education and practice across settings and specialties. The Dean is expected to cultivate a healthy work environment by embracing a culture of transparency and shared governance, assuring the well-being of the College through the allocation of funds, space, and other resources to support the College mission. Reporting to the Provost, the Dean will serve as the chief academic and administrative officer of the College of Nursing, responsible for promoting and sustaining excellence in teaching; curriculum and program development and evaluation; faculty research and scholarship; faculty and staff recruitment, employment, professional development, and program evaluation; student success and support services; and health care delivery in the region through the College and University practice network.

Working directly with the Vice President for Clinical Affairs, the Dean will support and develop strong interprofessional collaborative relationships with other Colleges within the University, external academic institutions, local and regional health systems, healthcare providers, and community partners. The Dean will provide leadership for strategic planning and policymaking, representing the College and University and assuring compliance with internal and external policies, accreditation, and certification requirements. The Dean will set the conditions for interdisciplinary research growth commensurate with ETSU’s R2: High Research Activity classification, encourage engagement with research teams across campus, and align research with the University commitment to rural population health improvement.

The Dean will promote a just culture where all will flourish. Embracing a strong professional identity in nursing, the Dean will be active in regional, national, and international organizations, be steadfast in procuring external resources to improve and grow the college as a whole, and intentional in creating nurse leaders who will impact health care delivery across all care environments. These environments include practice networks, local and regional healthcare systems, and community-based organizations, assuring excellent outcomes and influencing health policy to enhance the health of the region and beyond.


Required qualifications include an earned doctoral degree in Nursing, or doctorate in a related field with a master’s degree in nursing; three (3) or more years of significant leadership experience in a nursing field; and current licensure or eligibility for licensure in Tennessee or a compact state. Preferred qualifications include the knowledge and skills necessary to create academic programs that support regional clinical practice, administration of nurse-led clinics, and federally qualified health centers.

Ideal candidates will demonstrate a record of progressive, innovative, and effective academic leadership and administrative experience; a strong record of funded research and scholarship; teaching and curriculum experience in undergraduate and graduate nursing education, including doctoral education; evidence of exceptional communication skills; demonstrated ability to engage in collaborative, constructive approaches to decision making; ability to develop and maintain partnerships with internal and external community stakeholders; evidence of strong commitment to the nursing profession; demonstrated advocacy for faculty research, scholarship, and practice that crosses the care continuum; and the ability to provide strong fiscal management and oversight and guide development activities. Experience in rural health care and vulnerable populations, distance education, trauma-informed care and education, and collaborating with public and private sectors of health care communities for grant funding and partnership opportunities are also preferred.

University and Region

East Tennessee State University is a public R2  institution serving nearly 14,000 students yearly. It is located in Northeast Tennessee in Johnson City (population 72,514), with a million people within a 75-mile radius. The area abounds in scenic mountain beauty and places of historical interest and is prized for outdoor recreation, festivals, and cultural experiences.

Application Process

Parker Executive Search is assisting East Tennessee State University in the search for the Dean of the College of Nursing. The Search Committee invites letters of nomination, applications (letter of interest, full resume/CV, and contact information of at least five references), or expressions of interest to be submitted to the search firm assisting the University. Review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the appointment is made. It is preferred, however, that all nominations and applications be submitted before May 31, 2024. Please submit applications directly to Parker Executive Search. For additional information, please contact:

Porsha Williams, Vice President
Jacob Anderson, Senior Principal
Julia Butler-Mayes, Ph.D., Executive Recruiting Coordinator
Parker Executive Search
Five Concourse Parkway, Suite 2875
Atlanta, GA 30328
(770) 804-1996 ext.: 111
janderson@parkersearch.com || jbutler-mayes@parkersearch.com

ETSU is committed to ensuring that our students, faculty, and staff are valued and work in an environment of openness and acceptance. ETSU is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer.

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