Board of Directors
 
President
Judy Thompson
MSN Ed., RN, VA-BC™
AVApresident@avainfo.org 

Judy’s professional experience includes work as a registered nurse in oncology, telemetry, emergency, outpatient surgery, telemedicine nursing, and vascular access. In 2012, she earned her MSN with an emphasis on nursing education from Grand Canyon University. She is one of the founding members and president of the San Diego Vascular Access Network (SANVAN). Judy has been involved at many levels within AVA.  She served three years as a member and chair-elect for AVA’s conference development team (Dteam), two years as a Director at Large on the AVA Board of Directors, and the past two years as president-elect, and now president.

Judy is employed in a non-vascular access role at Kaiser Permanente in San Diego.  Earlier in her career at Kaiser, she was responsible for advancing practice in vascular access by performing a variety of procedures which included placement of PICCs, arterial lines, and central venous access devices via the internal jugular, axillary / subclavian, and femoral veins.
  In March 2017, Judy accepted per diem employment at Sharp Memorial Hospital on their vascular access team.

Judy also works in a variety of roles as an independent contractor in vascular access and legal nurse consulting.

   

   

President-Elect
Andrea Owens 
MSNEd, RN, CRNI, VA-BC™
 
aowens@avainfo.org
Andrea began her nursing career in adult critical care where she practiced for nearly 15 years and attained the distinction of Certified Critical Care Registered Nurse (CCRN). Following her tenure in critical care, her clinical practice has taken her through infusion therapy, clinical education, school nursing, nursing leadership and vascular access. Andrea has been an active volunteer in her personal and professional life and has held positions of leadership in multiple organizations. She remains an active ACLS Instructor for the AHA, is a Certified Registered Nurse Infusion (CRNI), Vascular Access-Board Certified (VA-BC) and is a member of Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) and the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN). Andrea is an Assistant Professor of Nursing at Marian University, Leighton School of Nursing, Indianapolis, IN. Establishing an interdisciplinary vascular access simulation module for nursing and medical students is her visionary goal.

Andrea has been the recipient of The Gardner Foundation Award,Sharing Expertise Scholarship for CRNI Certification and The Gardner Foundation Award,Education Scholarship through the Infusion Nurses Society. In addition, she has served as President and Presidential Advisor for the Indiana Chapter of the Infusion Nurses Society (IC-INS).

Currently active on the editorial review board forThe Journal of the Association for Vascular Access,she has also been honored to participate as an Item Reviewer on the Vascular Access Certification Corporation (VACC) Item Review committee since 2010. She has presented at local and national conferences and has been the recipient of a poster presentation award. In her role as a volunteer for AVA over the last few years she has served as a Membership Committee member, Chair-Elect, and then to the honor of chairing the Membership Committee for two years.
   

   

Presidential Advisor
Michael Brazunas
RN, BSN, VA-BC

mbrazunas@avainfo.org

Michael has been a registered nurse for 20 years and a vascular access nurse since 1996. He started his nursing career on an oncology unit at Naval Medical Center in San Diego, CA. After learning how to place PICCs, Brazunas helped establish and run the Navy’s first outpatient infusion center. He then started teaching PICC insertion to his fellow nurses, and subsequently attended Luther Medical’s “Train the Trainer” extended class.

After finishing his service in the US Navy in 1998, he was influential in bringing the use of Modified Seldinger Technique (MST) for PICC insertion to the bedside. He has spent the past 17 years promoting “best practice” in vascular access by teaching classes, speaking at conferences and meetings, and by mentoring new Vascular Access clinicians. An active member of the Association of Vascular Access, Mike has served as Chair of the Education Committee and as Director-at-Large. He lives in the Philadelphia area with his wife Eileen and daughter Grace.
   


 

Treasurer
Gregory Schears MD
gshears@avainfo.org

Dr. Schears is a pediatric Intensivist and anesthesiologist with a long standing interest in reducing patient complications and improving our approach to vascular access. He did his pediatric residency at St. Louis Children's Hospital, his anesthesia residency, pediatric anesthesia fellowship and pediatric critical care fellowship at John's Hopkins hospital. He worked at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia for 5 years and was recruited to the Mayo Clinic in 2001 to head the ECMO service. There he is the physician liaison to the nurse led PICC team, Medical Director of the ECMO Service and Co-Director of the Congenital Heart Unit. He is on the editorial board for JAVA and serves on the AVA Board of Directors as a Director at Large.
   

   

Secretary
Jennifer McCord
MSN, RN, PCCN, CCRN, CCNS, VA-BC

jmccord@avainfo.org

Jennifer has been a registered nurse for 25 years with the majority being in critical care. She completed her BSN in 1993 and MSN in 1999. She has worked as a Clinical Nurse Specialist since 2003 in a suburban Cincinnati hospital that serves as a Level III trauma center. In this role, Jennifer initiates many projects and supports nursing education. She was able to gain administrative support to start the hospitals Vascular Access Team in 2006 that has since spread to the entire hospital system. Jennifer has presented poster and spoken at many regional and national meetings. She was a recipient of the 2012 AVA Foundation scholarship that supported her traveling to Amsterdam for the WOCOVA conference.

Jennifer is certificated through the American Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN) as a Progressive Care Certified Nurse, Critical Care Certified Nurse, and a Certified Clinical Nurse Specialist. She is also VA-BC certified. Jennifer was involved in the item writing portion the VA-BC examination in 2010. Jennifer is currently enrolled as a Doctoral Student at Mount Saint Joseph University in Cincinnati, Ohio. Included in her experience is Adjunct faculty for the University in the distance learning Master’s degree program. She also teaches 12 Lead EKG at local career development centers in Cincinnati. Jennifer also volunteers in the 4-H Extension program in the county in which she grew up in, working with youth that are interested in agriculture.
   

   

Director-at-Large
Leigh Ann Bowe-Geddes, BSN, RN, CRNI, VA-BC

lbowegeddes@avainfo.org
Leigh Ann spent the early years of her nursing career in the critical care arena at the University of Kentucky Medical Center. After a stint as a traveling critical care nurse, Leigh Ann returned to Lexington, Kentucky, and transitioned to home care, eventually making home infusion and vascular access her specialty practice, and earning the CRNI credential.

Leigh Ann began working in industry, providing clinical support to manufacturers of vascular access devices, and providing vascular access clinical education for clinicians. She returned to the bedside to join the University of Louisville Hospital Vascular Access Specialty Team in 2003, and continues to serve on this team part time. Leigh Ann now works primarily as a vascular access consultant, creating educational programs, supporting manufacturers of vascular access products, and providing legal nurse consultation services. She has traveled extensively, speaking on vascular access-related issues in the United States and internationally.

Leigh Ann has been active in AVA since 1996, and previously served seven years on the AVA board of directors as Secretary, President-elect, and President (2009-2011). She has served on the Global Strategies Committee, and on the AVA Awards Task Force. She has been certified as VA-BC since 2010.

Having earned her ADN from Morehead State University in Morehead, Kentucky, Leigh Ann has since earned her BSN from Walden University. She is currently enrolled as a graduate student in the Adult/Geriatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner program at Walden University, and is a member of the Golden Key International Honour Society.
   

   

Director-at-Large
Russell Nassof, J.D.
rnassof@avainfo.org
 
Russell is an attorney with over 25 years experience in clinical healthcare and environmental risk management advising clients worldwide on liability and risk minimization for emerging issues. He has owned and operated 3 major consulting groups (one of which was sold to a public company), and is an active presenter and educator on reducing risk and liability for vascular catheter related issues and healthcare associated infections. Russell is a consultant to the insurance industry on managing risk for outbreaks (MERS, Fungal Meningitis, Ebola, Legionnaire's Disease)and with respect to the opportunity to underwrite coverage for emerging medical technological advancements. He has been instrumental in introducing legal and risk management issues to numerous healthcare organizations including ASHRM and APIC.
   

   

Director-at-Large
Ken Symington, MD, VA-BCTM

ksymington@avainfo.org
Dr. Kenneth Symington has 30 years of experience in medicine, practicing in Radiology, Diagnostic Radiology, as well as Vascular & Interventional Radiology. His practice- Inland Imaging in Spokane Washington, is a highly sub-specialized group of 55 radiologists with 7 interventional radiologists. He has been specializing in venous access methods and devices for the past 21 years and is the director of venous access for Providence Health Eastern division Washington State. He has spoken at several national and international meetings on various interventional radiology topics and has trade marked the Sweet-Spot” catheter tip assessment method.
   

   

Director-at-Large
Lori Kaczmarek,
RN, BSN, VA-BC™

lkaczmarek@avainfo.org
Lori’s nursing career includes experience in the Cardiac ICU, Cardiac Surgery and Heart Transplant spectrum. A nurse for over 30 years now, she advanced her practice and specialized in Vascular Access since 2010. During her tenure in critical care, Lori was honored with the Excellence in Critical Care Practice award presented by 3M Healthcare and the Association of Critical Care Nurses (AACN). She is also the recipient of the Coronary ICU Nurse of the Year presented by Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center, Milwaukee, WI. She is past President of the Greater Milwaukee Area Chapter of AACN (GMAC-AACN), and past member of their Executive Board and Program Planning Committee. In addition, she served as a Special Interest Consultant for AACN in WI and MI and a mentor for nursing students attending Alverno College as a Clinical Co-Assessor.

Lori earned her BSN in 1987 from Alverno College, Milwaukee, WI with support studies in Business, Management and Leadership Development. She is VA-BCTM since 2011 and in her current position is the Director of a thirty-RN Vascular Access Team in Wisconsin. Their team provides vascular access service to ten acute care, sub-acute care and long-term care facilities. Her day to day responsibilities include billing, payroll, staff development and education, scheduling, and capital management. She’s presented locally and nationally speaking on vascular access team management and outcomes and has a special interest in developing and building databases for data management and quality tracking. She resides in a suburb of Milwaukee with her husband Dave and two dogs.
   

   

Director-at-Large
Jocelyn Grecia Hill,
MN, RN, CVAA(c), VA-BC

jhill@avainfo.org
Jocelyn is a nurse educator for infusion therapy, vascular access and home infusion programs at Providence Health Care in Vancouver, BC Canada. She completed her MN in 2012 and has been nursing since 1990. She was President of the Canadian Vascular Access Association (CVAA) from 2013-2014 after serving one term as Director at Large. She served as Chair for the AVA DTEAM in 2015 and on the Board of Directors for VACC for 2 terms as Director at Large. Jocelyn is the founding and current president for the Vancouver AVA Network (CAVAN), the first network outside of the US. She is an active member and has presented at numerous conferences of national and international associations related to the specialty of vascular access and infusion therapy.