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When Nurses Speak, People Listen: An Interview with Pat Patton

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In this episode, Senior Clinical Editor, Lisa Bonsall, MSN, RN, CRNP speaks with Pat Patton, DNP, MSN, RN, NEA-BC, the Chief Nurse Executive, and Vice President for Patient Care Services at UCSF Health.

Highlights of the conversation include:

  • The evolution of his career, from being “tapped on the shoulder” to fill certain roles and learning with each one of them to be a better leader
  • The rewards of being a nurse executive
  • How the partnership of UCSF Health with the Nurses on Boards Coalition empowers nurses to get involved
  • Advice for nurses interested in leadership and board membership, including these encouraging words, “You have a lot to say. You don’t know the power of your voice…”

Pat-Patton-(1).jpgPat Patton, DNP, MSN, RN, NEA-BC is currently the Chief Nurse Executive, and Vice President for Patient Care Services at UCSF Health.  He has been with UCSF Health for 2 1/2 years.

Most recently Pat was the Chief Nursing Officer at University of California Irvine Health where he led that organization to their 4th Magnet designation as well as being named one of the Top 50 CNO’s to know. Prior to this Pat was at Catholic Health Initiatives for 16 years. During those 16 years Pat held many positions both in the local market as well as at the national level. At CHI Pat was the System VP of Nursing Operations at CHI where he was responsible for Operations, Leadership Development, Magnet and Pathway to Excellence oversight, staffing and scheduling as well as other duties.  Prior to coming to Colorado, Pat was the CNO/COO at a CHI hospital in Kentucky.

Pat is active in the American Organization of Nurse Leaders (AONL), Association for California Nurse Leaders (ACNL), as well as the American Nurses Associate (ANA).   In May of 2020 Pat was named as Becker’s 50 Hospital and Healthsystem CNO’s to Know.

Pat received his Doctor of Nursing Practice from the University of California, Irvine; his Masters of Nursing Administration from the University of Kentucky and his Bachelors of Science in Nursing at Florida A&M University. He also has additional training in faith community nursing.  

Pat has been married for 20 years to Kirk Patton. Pat and Kirk have 4 children between them, three daughters, one son and two grandsons. The children are all adults now and live in Nebraska, Tennessee, and Colorado.