Candidate for Area I Director

Cynthia LaBonde, MN, RN
Executive Director, Wyoming State Board of Nursing

Area I Director Responsibilities:

  • Ensures geographic diversity on the Board of Directors
  • Serves as a representative of all member boards
  • Transacts the business and affairs and acts on behalf of NCSBN

Describe all relevant professional, regulatory, and community experience.

I have been a RN in Wyoming for the last 36 years w/ one year as an RN in Idaho Falls, ID after graduation from nursing school at Montana State University. The bulk of my nursing experience has been in Perioperative Services, including the Operating Room, Central Sterile, Outpatient Services, Post-Anesthesia Care Unit and Management with forays into Staff Development, Patient Education and Instructor for high school Health Occupations classes. As a Wyoming resident for the past 36 years, my professional nursing career has been shaped by practice in small, rural communities. Though the hospital and surgery centers I worked in may have had limited budgets and technology, we offered quality patient care and utilized available resources to stay abreast of trends and technologies. We learned to be "scrappy" and resourceful! In a small community, it is important to communicate clearly with stakeholders including patients, community leaders, physicians and fellow nursing staff. We were encouraged by nursing administrators to "question everything! "This "scrappy", "question everything" mentality carried over to my work at the Wyoming State Board of Nursing, starting in 2011, first as a Nurse Investigator then as the Executive Director. I am fully integrated into the world of regulatory nursing and the importance of "protecting the public through nursing education and practice." Collaboration with Wyoming licensees, nursing educators, employers, legislators and professional nursing groups has been essential to promote the mission of WSBN. In the community, I believe it is important to be involved and to give, not just money, but time and expertise for personal causes. I have volunteered and raised donations in Wyoming for Multiple Sclerosis Bike Rides, Ride for Sight, Master Gardeners and multiple "walk" fundraisers. My participation projects a willingness to be involved and committed to others.

What is your perspective regarding the following issues affecting nursing regulation?

  1. Borderless healthcare delivery 
    Borderless healthcare delivery within the United States has been actualized with the current Nurse Licensure Compact. The enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact expands the current compact model. The new model was achieved by developing standards acceptable to all stakeholders. Borderless healthcare delivery amongst different countries will require cooperation and standardization/acceptance among regulatory agencies.
  2. Regulation of nursing education
    The healthcare world is rapidly evolving!  How do we ensure our graduating nursing students are prepared to provide competent nursing care upon graduation? Nursing regulation should be mindful of nursing education programs utilizing creative/resourceful methods to achieve nursing program outcomes. 
  3. The role of regulation in evolving scopes of practice
    Registered nurses are frequently asked to engage in skills beyond their scope of practice in a variety of healthcare settings. Nursing regulators must determine if the requested skill set is safe and can be supported by evidence. In Wyoming, we recognize practice decisions at the Board level will determine practice across the state. It is important to find that balance between perceived practice restriction and safe, evidence-based nursing care.  

Why do you want to serve in the role you are applying for?

I would like to serve on the Board of Directors at NSCBN because I want to "give back" at the national level. I have enjoyed my last 6 years in the world of regulatory nursing. Though Wyoming is a small state in terms of nursing provider numbers, I believe we have much to offer. I understand the needs of stakeholders be it patients, nurses and educators who are separated from one another by an expanse of geographical emptiness. I have learned to "question everything!"  I understand the unique needs of the healthcare communities in our rural state. I desire to represent Area 1 in order to collaborate with other regulators, to assist in directing the future of NCSBN and to share the knowledge/experiences I have gleaned as a nurse, regulator and resident of Wyoming.