JOHNSON CITY (November 14, 2012) – Frances “Billie” Sills, an assistant professor in the East Tennessee State University College of Nursing, has been chosen as president-elect of the Tennessee Nurses Association (TNA).
Sills brings a wide scope of experience in nursing practice as well as academic teaching and scholarship to her new post with the TNA, which advocates for the profession and strives to improve health care by influencing practice standards and health policy. TNA members voted for Sills as their president-elect at the organization’s recent annual conference. She will assume the presidency in October 2013.
An adjunct faculty member with the ETSU College of Nursing since 2003, Sills has been active in nursing leadership throughout her career and particularly with the American Nurses Association, which she joined immediately after graduating from nursing school. Sills has been president of TNA District 5 and a member of the association’s government affairs committee. She received the Outstanding TNA Member award in 2011.
Sills taught at the University of Miami in Florida and at the University of Texas-Houston before arriving at ETSU, where she also serves as the faculty adviser for the Student Nurses Association chapter. She was also an Air Force flight nurse. Sills is a past president of the American Association of Neuroscience Nurses and was co-founder and president of the East Texas Case Management Association.
“I’m looking forward to working on behalf of my colleagues as president of the TNA, as well as the students who will be the nurses of the future,” Sills said. “I consider this to be the ‘golden age’ of nursing, and I think this is the most exciting time ever to be a member of the profession. We have the opportunity to be a formative partner as health care reform continues to take shape.”
Sills started her career as a diploma nurse before earning a bachelor’s degree. She became a clinical nurse specialist and adult nurse practitioner after earning her master of science in nursing degree from the University of Alabama-Birmingham.
Dr. Wendy Nehring, dean of the college, said Sills is ideally suited for this role.
“We are very proud of Billie and know that she is poised to be a thoughtful and dedicated nursing leader for the state,” Nehring said.