Cynthia Persily

Cynthia Persily

School of Nursing

Associate Dean, Academic Affairs, Southern Region Programs, Chairperson and Professor,

West Virginia University

Professional Bio

 Cynthia Persily PhD, RN, FAAN is currently the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Southern Region Programs at the West Virginia University School of Nursing. She is also Professor and Department Chairperson for the Charleston Division of the School of Nursing. In addition to her administrative duties overseeing the academic offerings on four campuses across Southern West Virginia, Dr. Persily teaches in both the Master’s degree and Doctoral degree programs at WVU School of Nursing. Dr. Persily also serves as the Executive Director of the West Virginia Nursing Leadership Institute, a partnership between the WVU School of Nursing-Charleston Division and the CAMC Health Education Institute to provide a 12-month leadership development program for emerging nurse leaders in West Virginia. Dr. Persily serves as Secretary of the West Virginia Board of Examiners for Registered Professional Nurses, and was an appointed member of the legislatively mandated West Virginia Commission to Study the Nursing Shortage. In 2003, Persily was appointed by the Governor of West Virginia to the Health Care Advisory Council, a group of leaders in West Virginia charged with making recommendations for the health care system of the future. Dr. Persily maintains an active practice as an advanced practice nurse in a rural health center in West Virginia, where she began the only prenatal care program in the community 12 years ago. She is an active researcher in the area of maternal child health, including research related to community-based interventions to improve pregnancy outcomes, and in the area of nursing workforce issues. Past and current leadership roles include membership on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic and Neonatal Nursing and the Journal of Nursing Education, Chair of the National Advisory Board for the National Nursing Workforce Clearinghouse, and Chair of the WV Center for Nursing Board of Directors. Awards include a Penn/Macy Fellowship by the University of Pennsylvania (2000), the William J. Maier Health Education Award (2001), the highest award conferred at the West Virginia University Health Sciences Center-Charleston, and the West Virginia University School of Nursing Leadership Award (2002). In November 2005, Dr. Persily was inducted as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing, the organization charged with providing visionary leadership to the nursing profession and to the public in shaping health care policy and practice. Dr. Persily was honored to be named a Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellow in 2001, one of 20 nurses nationwide to take part in the 3 year leadership development program. She holds a BSN from East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania, and a MSN and PhD in Nursing and Health and Social Policy from the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Persily resides in Charleston with her husband, Eric, a physician, and their children, Aaron, age 10, and Alexandra, age 8. /* */