GAPNA would like to introduce your 2023-2024 Board of Director Winners.

Each winner is listed under the position they were nominated and chosen for. The election ran May 8, 2023 through June 1, 2023.

Please take a moment to read about this year’s winners.

Incoming President-Elect:

George Peraza-Smith

George Byron Peraza-Smith, DNP, APRN, AGPC-C, GNP-BC, GS-C, CNE, FAANP

Current Position:  Professor & Program Dean

Biographical Statement: George Peraza-Smith has been a practicing Gerontological Nurse Practitioner for over 25 years. He received his DNP with an emphasis in Nursing Education from Case Western Reserve University, GNP post-graduate certification from the University of South Florida, and ANP post-graduate certificate from Brandman University. He is Professor and Program Dean for DNP, A-GPCNP, Graduate Specialties, and RN to BSN Programs at West Coast University. In this role, he supervises nursing faculty and manages the instructional and administrative needs of post-licensure nursing programs. George has served as the immediate past president of the Gerontology Nursing Certification Commission and is currently a Member-at-Large Trustee. He served as GAPNA Treasurer from 2013 to 2015. He is an active member of the Geropsych SIG and serves as the current chair. He also serves on the Education Committee and is a reviewer on the Awards Committee. George has been a member of Florida and Florida Gulf Coast GAPNA Chapters and serves currently as President for the Florida Gulf Coast Chapter. He represented GAPNA on the task force for the 2nd Edition of the ANA Gerontological Nursing Scope and Standards of Practice. He served on the Roundtable and author group for the Consensus Statements for Advanced Gerontological Nursing Practice. George co-authored with the Geropsych SIG members on the GAPNA position statement for Supporting Evidence for Geropsychiatric Nursing as a Subspecialty of Gerontological Advanced Practice Nursing.

Ballot Statement: I am dedicated to our GAPNA mission to promote excellence in advanced practice nursing for the well-being of older adults. The past few years have created challenges in healthcare and have shown a spotlight on the ramped equalities of our healthcare system. We as providers know all too well that our older adult patients and families are struggling to navigate a broken healthcare system. I believe we as Advanced Practice Registered Nurses have the solutions, and we are committed to improving the care for older adults. I strongly believe in GAPNA, our members, and the contributions we collectively make to improve practice, education, and research. I am dedicated to the members of GAPNA and to our profession. As president-elect, I will be committed to growing our membership and continuously improving the members’ experience. I will continue to grow our organization's identity in healthcare circles to ensure we are participating members at the decision tables and promote our members’ activities that influence the care of older adults. I think my leadership style of inclusiveness and collaboration is a good fit for the GAPNA board and our membership. As president-elect, you can count on me to be honest, respectful, transparent, and accountable to you – the members. In concert with our vision, I believe we are the trusted leaders for the expert care of older adults.

Incoming Director At Large:

Cassandra Vonnes

Cassandra Vonnes

Current Position:  Geriatric Oncology APRN NICHE AFHS Coordinator

Biographical Statement: I completed a MS from the University of South Florida (USF) in 1995 as a gerontological nurse practitioner maintaining my board certification with a recent Gerontological Specialist Certification. My DNP in 2018 from USF. For the last 9 years, I have been able to direct the Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elderly (NICHE) to Exemplar Status, develop our early phase of the American College of Surgeons Geriatric Surgical Verification (GSV) program and integrate the Age Friendly Health System (AFHS) level of Committed to Care Excellence for Older Adults enterprise wide. I serve on the Communications Committee, and I am currently hosting of season 3 of the GAPNA CHAT podcast that featuring leaders in Geriatric Health Care.

Ballot Statement: Since graduating from a gerontological nurse practitioner master’s program, my clinical experiences in cardiovascular medicine, nephrology, and critical care prepared me for a faculty position at the University of South Florida College of Nursing. Guiding MSN and DNP students during their practicums by developing projects for the older adult with cancer provided system-wide reach. For the last 9 years, I have been able to direct the Nurses Improving Care for Healthsystem Elderly (NICHE) to Exemplar Status, develop our early phase of the American College of Surgeons Geriatric Surgical Verification (GSV) program and integrate the Age Friendly Health System (AFHS) level of Committed to Care Excellence for Older Adults enterprise wide.

I have been recognized as a Hartford Distinguished Educator Geriatric and awarded the Excellence in Leadership 2022 Award. I have presented both nationally and internationally on Fall and Injury prevention, delirium, and geriatric assessment. GAPNA has provided my team two grants that I have utilized for patient engagement and medication in an ambulatory setting and an exploration of variables related to unplanned 30-day readmissions in older adults with cancer. I am currently hosting of season 3 of the GAPNA CHAT podcast that featuring leaders in Geriatric Health Care. Experiences in acute care, ambulatory settings along with academia brings a variety of gerontological experiences. I thrive on collaborations and can deliver creativity, authenticity, and educational skills to this team.

Incoming Treasurer:

Michele H. Talley

Michele H. Talley

Current Position:  Associate Professor & Interim Associate Dean, Clinical and Global Partnerships

Biographical Statement: Michele Talley earned her BSN from the University of Alabama, MSN (Adult Acute Care Nurse Practitioner) and PhD in Nursing from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). At UAB, she is Associate Professor/Interim Associate Assistant Dean for Clinical and Global Partnerships where she oversees expansion of faculty practices and community clinical programs, mentors NP and DNP students, and serves as Director for an interprofessional clinic for uninsured patients with diabetes. Dr. Talley has been a member of GAPNA since 2017 and is an active member of the Acute and Emergent Care SIG. Her leadership within GAPNA includes serving as a member on the Planning Committee (2018-2019), Chair of the Planning Committee (2020-2022), and the inaugural Chair of the Acute and Emergent Care SIG. In 2018, under her leadership, the Acute and Emergent Care SIG received the Special Interest Group (SIG) Excellence Award. This year, Dr. Talley was honored with the GAPNA Rising Star Award.

Ballot Statement: My experience, reputation for integrity, and commitment to excellence make me the ideal candidate to serve as a shepherd and steward of GAPNA’s finances. The role of Treasurer is an important role requiring demonstration of financial literacy, the ability to manage the budget, provide financial reports, and comply with regulations. To this end, I have managed multimillion-dollar budgets in my role academic roles and as Principal Investigator on large federal grants with ultimate responsibility of managing financial resources.

Throughout my career, I have demonstrated a high level of integrity, accountability, and accuracy due to my attention to detail, adherence to deadlines, recordkeeping, and reporting skills, all of which are important characteristics of a Treasurer. Serving as Treasurer would allow me to share my skills with an organization that I am passionate about. In doing so, I would be able to continue serving GAPNA’s members and Board and use my skills and experience to provide financial leadership while growing opportunities that align with GAPNA’s vision and strategic priorities. Alignment of our financial resources with the strategic goals of GAPNA will help further education, practice, research, and health policy and ultimately promote health and better care for our aging population.

It is with great enthusiasm that I ask for your support as Treasurer for GAPNA and I pledge to uphold the standards of excellence in managing GAPNA’s finances as have both the current and past treasurers as well.

Incoming Nominating Committee Members:

Geraldine Kidary

Geraldine Kidary

Current Position:  Member

Biographical Statement: I have a BS in Nursing degree from the University of the Philippines, a MS in Nursing degree with a focus on Clinical Systems Management from Excelsior University, and a Post-Master Nurse Practitioner Certificate from the University of Wisconsin. My current job title is Senior Clinical Program Consultant at UnitedHealth Group. In this role, I provide clinical leadership direction and support promoting the growth of the Group Medicare Advantage business unit, coordinate clinical reporting for employer group performance reviews, and coordinate medical expense management workgroup meetings. I also work part-time as a nurse practitioner at Amana Medical Center in Oviedo, FL. In this role, I perform the nurse practitioner functions of providing patient-centered care through preventive screenings, diagnosing and managing chronic conditions and urgent visits, and providing patient education, among other functions, within my scope of practice. I have been a GAPNA member since 2017. Although I am a Family NP, my career has been mainly focused on the care of older adults in different health care settings.

Ballot Statement: I am seeking a position in the Nominating Committee because I am interested in supporting GAPNA’s various activities, including the election process. I understand the time and effort commitment and the rigorous and time-sensitive nature of the election process. I am willing and able to devote time and energy to the role and responsibilities of a nominating committee member. I am focused, analytical, flexible, and can work well under pressure. What I hope to achieve through the position that I seek is to contribute to the efficiency of the election process and through my interactions with the different committees and SIGs, I hope to encourage other members to run for office. I am convinced that exposure to SIGs and committees will help me with my personal and professional growth as well. In the same token, I hope that by my performing the duties of a nominating committee member to the utmost of my abilities, GAPNA will be able to achieve an efficient election process and an increase in the number of members seeking office, thereby benefiting from the talents and abilities of GAPNA members. I plan to uphold the values of responsibility, commitment, and integrity as a nominating committee member.

Cori Cunningham O'Neal

Cori Cunningham O'Neal

Current Position:  Assistant Professor/ Nurse Practitioner

Biographical Statement: Cori O'Neal is a board-certified Adult/Gerontological Primary Care Nurse Practitioner. She started her career as a registered nurse at the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Surgical Intensive Care Unit. She then worked as a Nurse Practitioner with the Vascular Division at UAB Health System. In 2017, she began her full-time teaching role and is an Assistant Professor at the UAB School of Nursing. Currently she is the Specialty Track Coordinator of the Adult/Gerontological Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Track. She also has a faculty practice as a Nurse Practitioner at the PATH Clinic, which provides care to uninsured patients with diabetes. She has been a member of GAPNA for several years now and is now part of the GAPNA Conference Planning Committee that is currently planning for the annual conference in New Orleans, LA in September 2023. She also is part of the GAPNA Education Special Interest Group.

Ballot Statement: GAPNA has become my professional home at a national level. Early in my career I became an active member of my local nurse practitioner association (Central Alabama Nurse Practitioner Association) and later served as the nomination committee chair for 2 years. In the recent past, I have become more involved at the national level with GAPNA and currently serve on the GAPNA Conference Planning Committee. If elected to the GAPNA Nomination Committee, I would strive to promote and recruit high quality leaders in geriatrics to the GAPNA Board of Directors. To do this, it will be important to maintain interest and involvement in GAPNA special interest groups and promote new GAPNA memberships.

As the Specialty Track Coordinator for the Adult/Gerontological Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Track at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing, my goal is to increase student involvement in GAPNA and guide them towards being active members of GAPNA. Their membership in GAPNA would not only promote the new NPs in their professional development, but also provide them with continuing gerontological education and promote excellence in their care for older adult patients. Students do not usually seek out professional development opportunities/professional associations early on in their careers unless coached on the importance and educated on the opportunities that come from being involved in such organizations. As a member of GAPNA, I plan to increase GAPNA’s visibility to my students and in turn promote future members and leaders in GAPNA.

The following members will return to the Board for the upcoming year:

  • President: Ann Marie Kriebel-Gasparro, DrNP, FNP, GNP
  • Immediate: Past President: Jennifer Kim, DNP, GNP-BC, GS-C, FNAP, FAANP
  • Secretary: Kimberly Posey, PhD, DNP, APRN, AGPCNP-BC, GS-C
  • Director-at-Large: Aparna Gupta, DNP, FACHE, CPHQ
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