Kent State College of Nursing Associate Dean Appointed to Redesigned NEONI Advisory Board

Tracey Motter, DNP, RN, associate dean for undergraduate programs

Tracey Motter, DNP, RN, associate dean for undergraduate programs, has been appointed to the newly redesigned Northeast Ohio Nursing Initiative (NEONI) Advisory Board, a workforce initiative under The Center for Health Affairs. In existence for more than a decade, NEONI is the only group in the United States which identifies and addresses healthcare issues and initiatives through collaborative efforts between academic and professional partners. “NEONI allows healthcare professionals and educators to make a connection in the same room while using the same terminology to address challenges,” said Motter. “With the endless changes occurring in healthcare, it is important for us to be in contact with healthcare and community agencies so that we can continue to educate graduates who are ready to practice.”

As Kent State is the largest College of Nursing in northeast Ohio, graduating more than 44% of the practicing nurses in the area, Dr. Motter believed it was important for the university have a voice within NEONI. “We need to be at the table, participating as a leader in discussions about the challenges we face as a profession and working to be part of the solution process. It is important for Kent State to be at the forefront of this initiative.”

According to a news release from The Center for Health Affairs, “the primary function of the [NEONI] Advisory Board will be to advise the Executive Committee regarding current and future deliverables and to direct projects and initiatives.” Prior to the redesign, community agencies such as nursing homes and outpatient organizations were not represented within NEONI. However, as healthcare continues to move from acute care out into the community, NEONI has recognized the need to broaden its prospective. The Advisory Board is working to invite those agencies to collaborate. The group hopes to more accurately identify challenges and develop changes that can be measured and forecast to the rest of the country.

NEONI’s new workgroup structure, which consists of three subgroups, will allow the group to concentrate its energies on identifying emerging issues important to its members while also striving to expand the diversity of its membership, including attracting younger nurses. The Issues Workgroup will examine issues of importance through surveys, interviews and focus groups. Their emphasis will be on short-term projects and rapid, practical outcomes. The Initiatives Workgroup will handle long-term projects deemed more complex and requiring intensive time and resource commitments. This group will evaluate projects in order to devise and execute a plan with deliverable and actionable output. The Communication and Engagement Workgroup will provide effective communication from and about NEONI, network with new members and assist with website content. Each workgroup will be co-chaired by an Advisory Board member in addition to a member from the general membership.

“The College of Nursing is proud to have Dr. Motter serve on the board of NEONI,” said Dean Barbara Broome, Ph.D., RN, FAAN. “The College of Nursing and NEONI work hand in hand to identify and address healthcare issues that impact our communities.”

NEONI board members will serve for two or three years for this first term to allow board member appointments to be staggered in the future. Board members have the option to apply for two consecutive terms.   

The redesign of NEONI will better show the value of the nursing profession. “Many people still believe nurses only do what doctors say, when in reality we are the gatekeepers of all the care a patient receives,” said Dr. Motter. “If a nurse determines an order is unsafe, he or she will not continue until they have verified everything. Through NEONI, our community will be able to better understand all that’s involved within the scope of the nursing practice.”




PHOTO CUTLINE: Tracey Motter, DNP, RN, associate dean for undergraduate programs at Kent State College of Nursing, has been appointed to the newly redesigned Northeast Ohio Nursing Initiative (NEONI) Advisory Board.

About Kent State University’s College of Nursing

In existence for more than 50 years, the College of Nursing at Kent State University is one of the largest and most comprehensive nursing programs in the nation with more than 12,000 alumni worldwide. As part of Kent State’s eight-campus system, the college provides more than 2,000 nursing students courses of study at the baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral levels. To learn more about nursing programs at Kent State, please visit

POSTED: Tuesday, September 18, 2018 - 3:23pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - 4:24pm
Mariah Gibbons