Stephen Cavanagh headshot

UC Davis nursing dean re-elected to national nursing board


Stephen Cavanagh, dean for the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis, has been selected to serve a second term on the board of directors for the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).

Cavanagh’s new term begins at the AACN’s Deans Annual Committee meeting in Washington, D.C. on March 25. He was first elected to the board in 2022.

He is among 14 directors, 11 of whom represent a member institution and two who represent nursing practice. Votes were cast by half of all member deans from the nation’s nursing schools that offer baccalaureate and higher degree programs.

“Navigating through the many challenges facing health care and higher education requires collaboration, ingenuity and leadership,” said AACN Board Chair Cynthia McCurren. “AACN applauds its newly elected leaders for their commitment to providing the thoughtful guidance and inspiration needed to meet these challenges and drive transformation in academic nursing.”

Cavanagh has contributed to AACN as a member of the finance and nominating committees. In the practice arena, he serves on the Executive Leadership Committee for the Healthy Aging Clinic at UC Davis Health. School of Nursing dean since 2018, he previously served as dean and professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst College of Nursing and in a variety of leadership roles at Wayne State University in Detroit, including CEO and board chair for the school’s Nursing Practice Corporation.

“I’m grateful to have another term on a board that advocates for advancing diversity and inclusivity within academic nursing and provides funding support to nurse educators whose scholarly activities reflect current issues in nursing education or practice,” Cavanagh said.

AACN is the voice for academic nursing representing more than 865 member schools of nursing at public and private institutions nationwide. The organization also sets quality standards for nursing education.