In our upcoming special webinar, our panel of experienced nursing executives will hold follow up discussion on race and nursing. This special webinar will focus on the emotional toll of racism, health equity and anti-Asian racism.


Ena Williams, MBA, MSM, BSN, RN, CENP

Ena currently serves as Chief Nursing Officer at Yale New Haven Hospital (YNHH), a 1,541-bed, Magnet®-designated, Level I trauma, academic medical center

Ena began her nursing career in Jamaica where she served in numerous staff and leadership roles. After migrating to the US, she joined the team at Yale New Haven Hospital as a staff nurse and has progressively advanced to her current role. She has served as a coordinator, an educator, manager and ultimately the Nursing Director of Perioperative Services. She was promoted to VP and Associated Chief Nurse in 2012 and assumed the current role of Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer at YNHH.

Ena earned her diploma in nursing from the University Hospital of the West Indies, her bachelor’s degree in nursing from Western Governors University and her MSM/MBA from Albertus Magnus College. She is currently enrolled in a PhD program. Ena is a graduate of the GE Health Management Nurse Executive Fellowship and is board-certified in executive nursing practice by the Association of Nurse Executives. She has published several journal and book chapters and is a frequent speaker at local/national nursing conferences.

Ena currently serves on the board of the Connecticut Hospital Association, the Gateway Community College Foundation, The Whitney Center, the nominating committee for the American Organization for Nursing Leadership (AONL). She is a member of the AONL, ANA, and a lifetime member of the National Black Nurses Association. Ena has been recognized with numerous awards: the Trailblazer Award from the National Black Nurses Association (2017), the Cornell Scott Health Leadership Award from the NAACP of Greater New Haven (2015). In 2012 she was recognized by the West Indian Social Club of Hartford as an outstanding Jamaican in the field of healthcare (2010) and in 2012 as an outstanding Jamaican in America in recognition of the 50th anniversary of Jamaican independence.

Dr. Ernest GrantErnest J. Grant, PhD, RN, FAAN

Dr. Ernest J. Grant is the 36th president of the American Nurses Association (ANA), the nation’s largest nurses organization representing the interests of the nation’s 4 million registered nurses.

A distinguished leader, Dr. Grant has more than 30 years of nursing experience and is an internationally recognized burn-care and fire-safety expert. He previously served as the burn outreach coordinator for the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Hospitals in Chapel Hill. In this role, Dr. Grant oversaw burn education for physicians, nurses and other allied healthcare personnel and ran the center’s nationally acclaimed burn prevention program, which promotes safety and works to reduce burn-related injuries through public education and the legislative process. He also serves as adjunct faculty for the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Nursing, where he works with undergraduate and graduate nursing students in the classroom and clinical settings.

Dr. Grant is frequently sought out for his expertise as a clinician and educator. In addition to being a prolific speaker, he has conducted numerous burn-education courses with various branches of the U.S. military in preparation for troops’ deployment to Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2002, President George W. Bush presented him with a Nurse of the Year Award for his work treating burn victims from the World Trade Center site. In 2013, he received the B.T. Fowler Lifetime Achievement Award from the North Carolina Fire and Life Safety Education Council for making a difference in preventing the devastating effects of fire and burn injuries and deaths within the state.

An active participant in professional organizations, Dr. Grant is a past chair of the National Fire Protection Association board of directors and served as second vice president of the American Burn Association board of trustees. He is also a member of Sigma Theta Tau and Chi Eta Phi. Dr. Grant served as president of the North Carolina Nurses Association from 2009 to 2011. In 2002, the ANA honored him with the Honorary Nursing Practice Award for his contributions to the advancement of nursing practice through strength of character, commitment and competence.

Dr. Grant holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing degree from North Carolina Central University and master’s degree in nursing and PhD degrees from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. He was inducted as a fellow into the American Academy of Nursing in 2014. He is the first man to be elected to the office of president of the ANA in its 122 years of existence.

Martha A. Dawson, DNP, RN, FACHEDr.Martha Dawson

Dr. Dawson is the 13th President of the National Black Nurses Associates, Inc. In 1976, Dr. Dawson earned her bachelor’s degree and in 1984, she earned her master’s degree, both from UABSON.   In 2010, she earned her Doctor of Nursing Practice from Case Western Reserve University Frances Payne Bolton, School of Nursing (FPBSON). In 1984, Dr. Dawson completed her hospital administration residency at Gaston Memorial Hospital, NC.  She has experience in academic medical centers, community hospitals, and academia. She served in senior-level positions such as, Vice President of Clinical Operations (2000-2006), Chief Nurse Executive (1997-2006), Associate Chief Operating Officer (1993-1997), Nursing Director (1989-1993) assistant to VP of Nursing (1984-1989), and nurse manager (1979-1983). She managed her own healthcare consultant business.

In 2019, Dr. Dawson was inducted into the Alabama Nursing Hall of Fame Nurse.  She is a Scholar in the Sparkman Global Health Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (2017), Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives (2007), Robert Wood Johnson Nurse Executive Fellow (2000 Alumni), and Johnson & Johnson Wharton Nurse Administrative Fellow (1999 Alumni).

Dr. Dawson is active in 15 local, state, regional and national professional organizations. She has served as the President for Birmingham Regional Organization of Nurse Leaders., and President for the Alabama Organization of Nurse Executives. She is active on many local, state and national boards.

Dr. Dawson has served as principal investigator, project director and coordinator on HRSA and foundation grants and as a grant consultant and program evaluator. Her translational research and scholarship focus are on career barriers and mobility, management development, succession planning, career progression, and workforce diversity and planning. She has publications in books, journals, newsletters, and podcasts. She was a contributing author in the Drive-Thru Flu Shots: A model for mass immunization that was adopted the CDC as their model that is being used during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dr. Dawson is an experienced, dynamic health care leader and a sought-after lecturer, workshop and seminar leader focusing on leadership, workflow design, organizational systems assessment, succession planning, workforce development, community health, strategic planning, health careers, program planning, and system-wide assessment and leadership development.

Alana Cueto MSN, RN, CNLAlana

Alana has spent her professional career improving the health and well-being of vulnerable children and families living in distressed urban neighborhoods through service, scholarship, education and advocacy. Alana is a registered professional travel nurse, certified Clinical Nurse Leader, Fellow at the New York Academy of Medicine and Immediate Past-President at the National Association of Hispanic Nurses (NAHN).

Alana combined purpose and passion as Founding President of the NAHN Garden State Chapter having led the chapter in cultivating healthier communities for all residents in the State of New Jersey. She also served on Governor Phil Murphy’s Healthcare Transition Advisory Board for the State of New Jersey, appointed November 2017.

As a nurse member of Nightingale Initiative for Global Health (NIGH) she contributed to the survey for the development of the Sustainable Development Goals used at the United Nations (UN). She presented at the UN’s 62nd Commission on the Status of Women: Empowering Girls and Women through Innovative Nursing and Midwifery Interventions, and numerous other conference presentations including the 2020 League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) Health Summit and Tipton’s Special Webinar Series: A Discussion on Race, Inclusive Practices and Nursing.

Alana has been honored for her leadership, health advocacy, and volunteerism. Recognitions include 2019 NJSNA/Institute for Nursing Dons & Divas Award, NAHN National Henrietta Villaescusa Community Service Award (2016), Seton Hall University College of Nursing Elizabeth Ann Seton Young Alumni Award (2015), and the Hispanic Leadership of New Jersey Health Advocate Award (2015)–a three part award that includes a Bronze Medal of Honor and Special Recognition from both the United States Congress and the State of New Jersey Joint Legislative Commendation. On September 28, 2019 The Wilson Initiative for Health & Social Equity, Inc. recognized Alana as an “Unsung Hero” for her advocacy in addressing the social determinants of health and for creating a more diverse workforce. The Alana Cueto Nursing Scholarship was established by The Wilson Initiative to help pave the way for minority students pursuing careers in nursing.

Alana resides in the City of Perth Amboy, New Jersey where in 2018 she demonstrated her commitment to servant leadership by running a political campaign against the incumbent for a City Council position. Despite not being elected she continues civic engagement and commitment to the community as a member of the City’s Planning Board and through collaboration with community leaders and stakeholders in an effort to engage residents on initiatives related to health and well-being.

Alana is proud to share that of all her achievements—the greatest has been to be the mother of her two children; Wesley and Caryn.

Mary Joy Garcia-Dia, DNP, RN, FAAN

Dr. Garcia-Dia is the president of the Philippine Nurses Association of America (PNAA), as well as the program director for Nursing Informatics in the Information Technology Department and the Center for Professional Nursing Practice at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. During her remarkable career, Dr. Garcia-Dia has remained passionate and active in the nursing community.

Dr. Garcia-Dia serves on the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Steering Committee for the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, a joint initiative of the AARP and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. For the last eight years, she has been an advisor to the PNAA Human Rights Committee on matters involving unfair labor practice.  In her capacity as PNAA President, Dr. Garcia-Dia sits as Board Member on the Alliance for International Ethical Recruitment Practices and provides recommendations on contracts and recruitment practices to the Philippine Overseas Labor Office, Philippine Consulate in Washington DC.  Dr. Garcia-Dia was also a panel member in the AARP Public Policy Institute Roundtable Discussion in 2016, discussing the AARP’s CARE (Caregiver Advise, Record, Enable) Act. As a past member of the National Advisory Council on Research for Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Health, Dr. Garcia-Dia continues to raise educational awareness in addressing the underrepresentation of minority health through grant projects (Patient Centered Outcomes Research and All of Us).

Dr. Garcia-Dia values the education of healthcare professionals, holding multiple academic positions along with her other roles. She serves as a Nursing Informatics MSN course developer at the City University of New York School of Professional Studies, an adjunct assistant professor at the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing at Case Western Reserve University, and an adjunct faculty member at the New York University Rory Meyers College of Nursing.

Dr. Garcia-Dia received her bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Saint La Salle College of Nursing and her master’s degree in nursing informatics from New York University. She completed the Minority Nurse Leadership Institute fellowship program at Rutgers University College of Nursing in 2006. In 2015, Dr. Garcia-Dia received her doctor of nursing practice from Case Western Reserve University.