Empowering and Equipping Arkansas’ Nursing Workforce


2020 40 Nurse Leaders Under 40 Recognition Program

The Future of Nursing in Arkansas

ACN Mission: The mission of the Arkansas Center for Nursing, Inc. is to promote a culture of health for the citizens of Arkansas by advancing nursing education, practice, leadership and workforce development.

Purpose of Award: 40 Nurse Leaders Under 40 in the state are recognized due to their exemplar dedication to the nursing profession. Recipients go above and beyond to display a commitment to service excellence and leadership. They are acknowledged as community outreach servants. Recipients provide dedicated service to the population with a continued promise to grow in leadership and the advancement of our nursing profession in Arkansas.

Nomination Submission

We are inviting nominations from all areas and aspects of Nursing in the state of Arkansas. Nominations should be submitted from individuals who work closely with the nurse applicant in order to verbalize the applicant’s excellence.  If self-nominating, applicants are required, at a minimum, to attach two reference letters for application to be accepted. WINNERS FROM THE PREVIOUS TWO YEARS ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR THE CURRENT AWARD.

Selection Procedure

  1. Nominations will open June 1, 2020
  2. Nominations will be submitted online.
  3. Nominations will be blinded and sent to a panel of judges and scored using the attached rubric.
  4. Top 40 candidates with highest scores will be chosen as winners. In case of a tie, a tiebreaker scorecard will be resubmitted to the selection committee for rescoring.
  5. Winners and affiliated organizations will be notified of selection by or before August 15, 2020.

Recognition of Awards

Recognition Award Celebration will tentatively be October 12, 2020 at the Benton Event Center.  Notification will be sent to each winner and their affiliated organization.

Important Deadlines

Nomination Deadline: July 15, 2020

Winners notified by or before: August 15, 2020

Winners Reception: Tentative October 12, 2020

Please follow the link below to submit your on-line nomination.

Instructions: Utilize the four Pillars of Excellence in Nursing for considering your nominee for one of Arkansas’ 40 Nurse Leaders under 40 Honor. Based on your experience with the applicant or as the applicant (if self-nominating must include 2 letters of reference), please provide significant detail about how this applicant stands out as an exceptional leader among peers in nursing in Commitment to Excellence, Service/Outreach, Leadership Qualities, and Contribution to the Advancement of Nursing Profession. 

Nominee must also meet the following criteria:

  1. Must NOT have reached their 41st birthday by October 31, 2020
  2. Must Hold an unencumbered Arkansas RN license
  3. If the nominee has been a previous recipient of the 40 Under 40 award, all responses must reflect the nominee’s accomplishments since they last received the award. WINNERS FROM THE PREVIOUS TWO YEARS ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR THE CURRENT AWARD.

Nominees will need to submit a cover letter in addition to the application. Cover letters should address the following questions:

  • Nominees goal(s) for the future and/or plans for advancing in nursing as a leader.
  • How has his/her experiences, skills, and community activities enhanced their leadership abilities to support commitment to excellence?
  • Nominee’s ongoing education plans
  • Past nominations/recognitions/awards including year received/nominated

 Cover letters should be emailed to:

Ashley Davis, PhD, RN

Executive Director

Arkansas Center for Nursing, Inc.

Email: ARCenterforNursing@gmail.com


Apply Here: https://forms.gle/dp5LPMTemJ2482UR8

All applications must be submitted on-line. This is a sample of the questions that will be asked.

The Future of Nursing in Arkansas 2020 application FINAL

This is an example of an exemplar application submission. 

Application Example 2020



Applications for the 2020 BSN Young Leaders Program NOW OPEN!

The Young Leaders program will provide the BSN student the opportunity to explore the leadership role of the Registered Nurse, in a selected setting, under the mentorship of a nurse leader. This program will integrate concepts from Quality Safety Education in Nursing and the landmark Institute of Medicine (IOM) report: The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health.

This nursing leadership experience is being offered to student nurses in their junior or senior year of a baccalaureate program and will provide opportunities to explore various aspects of leadership in nursing. These experiences will go outside the classroom, beyond the bedside, and offer chances to work with nurse researchers, educators, clinicians and/or leaders. Upon the successful completion of the Young Leaders Program, students will receive a $1,000 stipend to be spent toward their educational expenses.

Announcement of the 2020 BSN Young Leaders



Empower nurses in Arkansas to lead culture of health initiatives & guide redesigning health care to provide improved care for all populations.


Dr. Keitha Griffith, DNP, RN, NEA-BC.

Dr. Rebecca Parnell, PhD, APRN, ACNS-BC


The Leadership Committee meetings are held on the 3rd Wednesday of every other month at 12:00pm

Our Work

40 Nurse Leaders Under 40

Nurses on Boards Training

Culture of Health Initiatives


Promote leadership growth in nurses.

The 40 honorees are selected using criteria on how each applicant stood out among their peers in four distinctive areas: Commitment to Excellence, Service/Outreach, Leadership Qualities, and their Contributions to the Advancement of the Nursing Profession.

Recognition as one of 40 nurse leaders in Arkansas under the age of 40 is intended to identify, celebrate, and encourage exemplary dedication to the nursing profession and dedicated service to the population while displaying a promise to grow in leadership for advancing nursing in Arkansas.

The 2019 40 Under 40 Awards Ceremony will be held on Tuesday April 30th at 1:30 pm at the Benton Event Center.

Click here to view the nurses recognized in previous years as the 40 Under 40.

Do you know an exceptional young nurse leader in Arkansas? Check back around the beginning of each year to submit your nomination.



To improve the health of communities and the nation through the service of nurses on boards and other bodies.

Nurses on Boards Coalition

The Arkansas Center for Nursing is part of the national Nurses on Boards campaign. Click here to visit the Nurses on Boards Coalition website.

Arkansas-Missouri Training Intensive

Arkansas Center for Nursing & Missouri Center for Nursing collaborated in June 2017 to offer a Nurses on Boards Training Intensive in Branson, MO. Click here to read about it.


Interested on serving on a Board of learning more about leadership opportunities? Click here to learn more.