Saint Martin’s University nursing director selected to join ranks of distinguished nursing organization

June 26, 2014

Joy Song

LACEY, Wash. – Louise Kaplan, Ph.D., ARNP, FNP-BC, FAANP, is one of 168 leaders in nursing chosen for induction as a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing. Membership in the academy is among one of the nursing profession's most significant honors. Kaplan, Saint Martin's University director of nursing, will be inducted in October at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.

The academy’s mission is to serve the public and the nursing profession by advancing health policy and practice through generating, synthesizing and disseminating nursing knowledge. It has a membership of more than 2,200 fellows from all 50 states and 24 countries.

"The American Academy of Nursing welcomes this stellar cohort of new fellows,” says academy President Diana Mason, PhD, RN, FAAN. “As clinicians, researchers, educators, executives and leaders in all sectors of our society, they are joining the nation's thought leaders in nursing and health care."

Selection as a fellow is conferred upon nurse leaders who demonstrate evidence of significant contributions to nursing and health care. Applications are reviewed, with selection based, in part, on "the extent the nominee's nursing career has influenced health policies and the health and well-being of all," according to the Academy.

Kaplan, an associate professor, published scholar and distinguished nurse educator, has led Saint Martin's RN-to-BSN Program in Nursing since its establishment in fall 2012. She is also a family nurse practitioner and maintains a clinical practice. Her 40-year career includes 17 years in academia, serving as a senior policy fellow for the American Nurses Association, and decades of clinical practice, advocacy and political and legislative work.

Kaplan's research has encompassed advanced practice registered nurse prescriptive authority and workforce issues; prescribing competencies; Doctor of Nursing Practice education; and the influence of Washington State's nurse legislators in health policy. She has published numerous articles, conducted dozens of podium and postr presentations, and is co-editor of a book on prescribing for advanced practice registered nurses.

Kaplan has been active in numerous professional organizations, and in legislative and policy activities. Her involvement in the Washington State Nurses Association includes several elected and appointed positions, including two years as president. She also organized the association's first Nurse Legislative Day.

She serves on the board of directors and chairs the legislative committee of the ARNPS United of Washington State, and is a member of the Washington Nursing Action Coalition's education subcommittee.

Among her honors, Kaplan has received two teaching awards from the Washington State University College of Nursing, was inducted into the Washington State Nurses Association Hall of Fame, received the health policy award from the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties, and is a Fellow of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners.

Most recently, Kaplan successfully guided the Saint Martin's nursing program through the process of national accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and state approval from the Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission.

Kaplan describes the Saint Martin’s RN-to-BSN Program as one that provides nursing education firmly rooted in the liberal arts and based on the most recent scientific evidence and best practices. The program strongly encourages graduate nursing education after completion of the baccalaureate degree and emphasizes leadership preparation for nurses in the workplace, community and profession, she says.

Saint Martin’s University is an independent four-year, coeducational university located on a wooded campus of more than 300 acres in Lacey, Washington. Established in 1895 by the Catholic Order of Saint Benedict, the University is one of 14 Benedictine colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, and the only one west of the Rocky Mountains. Saint Martin’s University prepares students for successful lives through its 23 majors and seven graduate programs spanning the liberal arts, business, education, nursing and engineering. Saint Martin’s welcomes more than 1,100 undergraduate students and 400 graduate students from many ethnic and religious backgrounds to its Lacey campus, and 300 more undergraduate students to its extension campuses located at Joint Base Lewis-McChord and Centralia College. Visit the Saint Martin’s University website at

For additional information:

Louise Kaplan, Ph.D., ARNP, FNP-BC, FAANP
Nursing Program Director
Associate Professor 360-412-6129;

Genevieve Canceko Chan
Vice President, Marketing and Communications