Linda R. Cronenwett, PhD, RN, FAAN
North Carolina Nurses Association
Linda R. Cronenwett, PhD, RN, FAAN, professor and former dean of the School of Nursing at the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill, has enacted commitments to improving health, health care system performance, and nursing professional development through a career of leadership in integrating nursing practice, education, and research.
In practice, Cronenwett has served as a staff nurse, clinical nurse specialist, director of nursing research, and director of professional practice. At Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC), she was responsible for research, academic affiliations, and the Nursing Practice Council professional practice structure. Her innovations in these roles, disseminated in editorials and publications, were precursors to the evidence-based practice initiatives seen today.
While at DHMC, Cronenwett served terms on the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) nursing study section and on the National Advisory Council for Nursing Research, NIH, contributing unique expertise in science relevant to practice and administration. She also served as president of the New Hampshire Nurses Association, and chair of the American Nurses Association’s Congress on Nursing Practice.
In academia, Cronenwett served in faculty roles at Stanford University, the University of Michigan, and UNC-Chapel Hill. She came to UNC in a distinguished professorship that involved integrative work between the school and hospital and subsequently served 10 years as dean of the school. She furthered work on academic-practice partnerships, served as a board member for the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and initiated the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF)-funded Quality and Safety Education for Nurses project. This national initiative is changing nursing education to produce graduates with the competencies needed to continuously improve the quality, reliability, and safety of the health care systems within which they work.
Cronenwett is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and National Academies of Practice. She currently serves as co-director of the RWJF Executive Nurse Fellows program.