Association of Advanced Practice Psychiatric Nurses
Advancing your practice, your career, and our community.

AAPPN 2019-20 Board Election Results

AAPPN is proud to announce the newest members of the Board of Directors.

President-Elect: Kristine Highlander, ARNP, PMHNP-BC

Statement: Thank you for considering me as your President-Elect! I have enjoyed getting more involved in the inner workings of AAPPN with my role as Membership Committee chair and At-Large Board member over the past 2 years. In these roles, I have supported programs and projects that have resulted in a 14% increase in membership, including an even larger increase in student membership.

I am passionate about AAPPN, the vital role it has played in supporting key issues for advanced practice psychiatric nurses over the decades, and the need to remain on the leading edge of our modern challenges and opportunities. I look forward to supporting your practice in all areas, including focusing on quality education and preceptorship, insurance issues for prescribers and our patients, and the big changes that continue to develop in regards to how we care for the acutely ill. It is with gratitude for the amazing nurse leaders who have come before me that I ask for your vote.

Biographical information: I am in practice as a PMHNP at a residential substance use facility in Kirkland where I oversee detox and serve as a psych consult, as well as moonlighting at Navos inpatient hospital in West Seattle. My other passions are my family and seemingly endless home renovations.

Member-At-Large: Virginia (Ginni) Buccola, DNP, PMHNP

Statement: AAPPN has been a part of my professional growth and development as a PMHNP from the very beginning of my graduate work at the University of Washington. What I have appreciated the most is the opportunity AAPPN provides for us to nurture relationships between one another as Advanced Practice Nursing professionals, connecting our different practices and geographic locations under one lovely umbrella. I would be honored to have the opportunity to support my fellow AAPPN members by serving as an At-Large Board Member.

Biographical information: I have been a Nurse since 1994, working first as an RN in Public Health and then in Mental Health. I completed my MSN in 2012 and DNP in 2013, both through the University of Washington. I am currently working in Primary Care as a Psychiatric Consultant. Prior to this, I worked in Community Mental Health and maintained a small private practice. I have a special interest in Perinatal Mental Health and Infant Mental Health, but enjoy working with people of all ages. I live in Tacoma with my partner and our daughter.

Member-At-Large: Lee Moore, ARNP, PMHNP-BC

Statement: As a PMHNP, I am finding new ways to get involved with the growth of our field with each passing day. I believe that AAPPN can do great things for its membership and, indirectly, for the patients we work with. As an At-Large Member, I believe that I could play a small role in furthering this. At-Large Members can devote their time to reaching out to the membership and advocating for the organization.

As someone who has been searching for such an organization in other states and fields, I am excited by the opportunities afforded us all and fully intend to throw my efforts into whatever may help our field. While I currently work within the private practice and education environments, my own experiences within FQHCs, CMHs, and private group practices allow me to attend to the wishes and desires of a wide swath of Washington PMHNPs. If nothing else, I take my work seriously because I know others depend on my efforts.

Biographical information: I am an “early career professional” when it comes to the field of psychiatric-mental health nursing (3.5 years), but I have also worked within the fields of education and counseling. I currently teach RN-level clinical courses for Seattle University and am the child and adolescent course sequence lead for Maryville University. In another life, I taught history to high school students.

I currently own a private practice in the Bellevue area, Spectra Integrative Psychiatry, and am in the process of completing my DNP degree. I grew up in Georgia but moved west to live and work in an independent practice state that was as green and lush as where I grew up (though we might need to work on what y’all call “tea”).

Member-At-Large: Jean Tang, PhD, PMHNP-BC

Statement: Since founded in 1982, AAPPN has been an incredible resource for the advanced practice psychiatric and mental health nurses offering opportunities for peer support and professional development. The organization has also been a platform for PMHNPs’ role advocacy and policy engagement, especially at the state level. I am inspired by the AAPPN mission and its members’ dedication to the profession. I am currently serving as a member on the AAPPN Membership Committee. I would be honored to deepen my involvement with the organization by serving in the role of the At-Large Board Member to help promote our profession.

Biographical information: I have been a PMHNP in the community outpatient setting for 15 years, serving culturally diverse population with chronic mental illness and trauma history. In addition to my clinical practice, I have a dual career in higher education. Since 2013, I have been a faculty member at the University of Washington School of Nursing. Prior to that, I taught at Seattle University College of Nursing for 8 years. I enjoy working with students and being part of their professional development.

My recent research funded by the National Institute of Health (NIH) focuses on the use of audio and visual stimulation to induce delta brainwaves for sleep promotion in older adults with comorbid insomnia and osteoarthritis pain. I am grateful to be part of the effort to connect practice, teaching and research.

In addition to being a member on the AAPPN Membership Committee, I serve on the Board of the Alliance of People with disAbilities that promotes independent living for people with disabilities. I also serve as a member on the Communication Committee of the Sleep Research Society that is an international organization for sleep researchers.

Member-At-Large: Danielle Waldron, ARNP, PMHNP-BC

Statement: Throughout the last two years I have become more experienced with the opportunities in AAPPN. The dedication and commitment this organization shows to its members has inspired me to become more involved. AAPPN’s dedication in combination with my goal to connect other psychiatric nurse practitioners has led me to run as At-Large Board Member.

Biographical information: I have been in practice since graduating from Seattle University in 2013. I practice in community mental health and focus on addictions. I currently co-chair the Snohomish County Chapter meetings. I have been a member of AAPPN since I was a student and have valued the organization and the many resources it offers.