Dr. Debra J. Barksdale is an Associate
Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is
certified as both a family and an adult nurse practitioner. She is
also a certified nurse educator and is a Fellow of the American
Academy of Nurse Practitioners. She is nationally known for work with
on issues affecting nurse practitioner education and practice. Dr.
Barksdale is currently President-Elect of the prestigious National
Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties (NONPF). In the past as
a member of the Board of Directors NONPF, she chaired both the
Research and the Capital Development and Marketing Committees. Dr.
Barksdale is also currently a member of the National Educational
Research Think Tank for the National League for Nursing (NLN). She is
also a Department of Health and Human Services Primary Health Care
Policy Fellow and a member of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Executive Nurse Fellows 2011 cohort.
In addition to teaching nurse
practitioner students at Carolina, she chairs the Master’s
Executive Committee, co-chairs the Graduate Faculty Committee and is
a member of the Faculty Development Committee, and the Faculty
Executive Committee in the SON. She is currently the faculty leader
in efforts to establish a Doctor of Nursing Practice Program at
UNC-CH. She was coordinator of the FNP Program at the University of
North Carolina at Chapel Hill for 4 years from 2002 to July, 2006.
As a researcher, Dr. Barksdale’s
focuses on stress, emotions, and cardiovascular disease in Black
Americans. Specifically, she explores the relationships among
contextual factors, psychological factors, physiological stress
responses and blood pressure in Black adults. Her current work
explores the underlying hemodynamic determinants of hypertension,
particularly sleep blood pressure and sleep total peripheral
resistance, as well as the cortisol awakening response. The study
also examines whether individual differences in trait emotions and
coping mechanisms moderate the influence of chronic psychosocial
stressors on physiological systems. She currently has a funded
National Institute of Health research grant: Hypertension in Black
Americans: Environment, Behavior, and Biology. She also is a
member of the Steering Committee for the University of North Carolina
Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention and the School of
Nursing’s Biobehavioral Laboratory Scientific Advisory Board. She
is the only nurse appointed to the Board of Governors for the new
Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) which was
established by the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
Dr. Barksdale has over 20 years of NP
experience and has been a NP in urgent care, primary care, home care
and care of the underserved. She was the Administrative Director for
Medlantic Med+Care a clinic of the Washington Hospital Center Network
in Washington D.C. and Co-Director of Imani, a faith based Nurse
Manage Clinic in Detroit Michigan. She currently practices as a
volunteer at the Robert Nixon Clinic for the homeless in Chapel Hill.
She has numerous publications, presentations, and abstracts related
to her research, diversity, NP education and practice. Dr. Barksdale
is a practitioner, educator, researcher, administrator, and advocate.