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2019 Annual Conference Speakers
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TONE 2019 Annual Conference Speakers

The Heart of a Nurse Leader: Values-Based Leadership
Bob Dent photo
Senior Vice President, Chief Operating & Chief Nursing Officer • Midland Memorial Hospital

Bob Dent is the Senior Vice President, Chief Operating and Chief Nursing Officer at Midland Memorial Hospital in Midland, Texas. He maintains academic appointments with Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center and the University of Texas of the Permian Basin. Bob serves as President on the Board of Directors of the American Organization of Nurse Executives.

Dr. Dent’s career spans more than 30 years in healthcare in such roles as nursing assistant, LVN, RN, assistant director of nursing, director of nursing, licensed nursing home administrator, chief nursing officer, dean of health sciences at a community college, and chief operating officer. Dr. Dent served in small rural to large urban hospitals.

Dr. Dent is the recipient of Modern Healthcare’s Class of 2006 Up and Comers in Healthcare Administration; Texas Organization of Nurse Executives 2013 Excellence in Leadership Award; Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Distinguished Alumni 2014; and 2016 Richard Hader Visionary Leader Award.

Dr. Dent academically progressed in nursing completing a vocational nursing program at Texas State Technical Institute; Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) from South Plains Community College; Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with an emphasis in Health Care Management from the University of Phoenix; and his Doctor of Nursing Practice from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. Dr. Dent is Board Certified, Advanced Nurse Executive (NEA-BC); Certified Executive in Nursing Practice (CENP); a Fellow with the American College of Healthcare Executives (FACHE) and a Fellow with the American Academy of Nursing (FAAN).

Over the course of his career, Dr. Dent combined his expertise in nursing and leadership to co-author three books, a number of journal articles, and presentations related to culture, improving workplace environments, interprofessional collaboration, and nurse staffing.


Every nurse is a leader, whether or not they have a formal management title. In this presentation, I'll challenge every nurse to be the leader who inspires others to do their best and be their best. I'll share values-baseed life and leadership strategies that every nurse can use to be a better caregiver, a better leader, and a better person.

This is more important than ever, because in today's fast-changing healthcare world we need leaders in every corner, not just in the corner office.

Learning Objectives
  • Recognize the three essential elements of a Culture of Ownership to eradicate toxic emotional negativity creating a more positive and healthier workplace practice environment.
  • Identify with and relate to The Twelve Core Action Values described in The Heart of a Nurse Leader to be a values-based leader.
  • Each participant to examine their leadership to be able to stand up on their values during turbulent times in healthcare.

What’s Your Plan Be?
Libby Spears
Founder • Bravo CC

Libby Spears, founder of Bravo cc, has a long rap sheet for breaking rules, challenging the status quo, and evangelizing the importance of confidence, courage, and credibility for every professional. She believe that you get there by discovering how to use communication to build and nurture relationships. While her troublemaking tendencies didn't serve her well as a young kid at school, she has honed it into her greatest strength. Today she works all over the United States with professionals who want to improve how they communicate and lead. She is an educator, liberator, and entertainer--the perfect mix for learning.


In 2010, over a grande vanilla latte with my good friend, I was told her a story about a client who was struggling. "You know the problem," I told her, "I am their back up plan for when things aren't going well but when they get better they just go back to the way they have always done things. If they just understood who they want to be we wouldn't have to keep doing this."

You see, up to that point, my marketing materials all said "When it's time for Plan B." It made sense--most of my clients came to me because they needed help working on their presentation skills because what they had been doing was not working. I was their Plan B. Clever right? Eat your heart out Nike!

This conversation + cup of coffee was an epiphany for me. Could I articulate a message that Plan A ("But this is how we have always done things!") leads to Plan B and this formula is not a long term success strategy?

Today this question guides the philosophy of my business and how I "do life." I love sharing with others how they can find their Plan Be through a series of focused activities. What's Your Plan Be? taps into your strengths while challenging you to also name your limitations and address them in meaningful ways--so that they don't become a liability. What's Your Plan Be? is a challenge to Name it, Claim it, Live it!

U.S. Disaster and Public Health Emergency Preparedness: Uncertain Times and 21st Century Threats
Tener Veenema photo
Tener Veenema, PhD MPH MS RN FAAN
Professor • Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Tener Goodwin Veenema, PhD, MPH, MS, RN, FAAN, is Professor of Nursing and Public Health at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. As an internationally recognized expert in disaster nursing and public health emergency preparedness, she has served as senior scientist to the DHHS Office of Human Services Emergency Preparedness and Response (OHSEPR), DHS, FEMA and the Veterans Affairs Emergency Management Evaluation Center (VEMEC). An accomplished researcher, Dr. Veenema is a member of the American Red Cross National Scientific Advisory Board and is an elected Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, the National Academies of Practice, and the Royal College of Surgeons, Dublin, Ireland. She is editor of Disaster Nursing and Emergency Preparedness for Chemical, Biological and Radiological Terrorism and Other Hazards, 4th Ed., the leading textbook in the field and developer of Disaster Nursing, an innovative technology application (“App”, Unbound Medicine). Dr. Veenema was awarded the Florence Nightingale Medal of Honor (International Red Crescent, 2013) the highest international award in Nursing for her professional service in disasters and public health emergencies and was the recipient of a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award (2017). She served as the National Academy of Medicine (NAM) 2018 Distinguished Nurse Scholar-in-Residence and has been a member of several NAM committees including the CDC Standing Committee for the Strategic National Stockpile, CDC Committee on Evidence-Based Practices for Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response, and the CDC/NIOSH Committee on the Use of Elastomeric Respirators in Health Care.

Dr. Veenema received master's degrees in nursing administration (1992), pediatrics (1993), and public health (1999) and a Ph.D. in health services research and policy (2001) from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry.

Kathy Weseman photo
Kathy Weseman, DNP, RN, CCM, LNC
American Red Cross • Volunteer Red Cross Nurse - Disaster Health Services Coordinator and Supervisor

Kathy Weseman DNP, RN, CCM has been a RN for 39 years and has worked in various clinical, management, and educational positions in nursing. I have been a Red Cross volunteer nurse for almost seven years serving in various leadership positions in multiple Texas and national disaster relief operations. I also work daily disaster health services cases in Texas and assist in providing leadership and guidance to disaster health services volunteers in Texas. My clinical research project for my DNP was formalize the virtual process for Red Cross disaster nursing in Texas. The paper is Pilot Texas Red Cross Virtual Disaster Health Services Model – a case study. I co-managed the virtual disaster health services team for three large flood disasters in Texas and Louisiana in 2016. I am also retired Navy and serve as a service to Armed Forces volunteer nurse for the Red Cross.


Disasters and public health emergencies are increasing in the United States creating a mandate for national preparedness and workforce development. Simultaneously the nature of 21st Century threats is constantly changing creating uncertainty and confusion as organizations try to prepare. Nowhere is this burden more evident than upon the U.S. health care system, public health departments and their staff. All health care professionals and nurses must be able to provide competent, basic care in a timely and appropriate response. At a minimum all health care professionals including nurses must possess knowledge about disaster and public health emergency response, and have the skills and abilities to participate in a timely and appropriate response.

Learning Objectives
  • Recognize the burden on health care systems and clinical challenges encountered as a result of recent U.S. disasters.
  • Appreciate the need for organizational and workforce readiness for disasters and public health emergencies of international concern.
  • Recognize the unique knowledge, skills and abilities required in disaster nursing.