Dr. Kristin Ashford Selected as FNINR Ambassador

The Friends of the National Institute of Nursing Research (FNINR) are pleased to announce the selection of Kristin Ashford, PhD, APRN-BC, FAAN, associate dean of Undergraduate Faculty and Interprofessional Education Affairs, one of five nurse scientists to join the fourth cohort of Ambassadors. This unique advocacy program began in 2014 and has grown to include over 30 Ambassadors. The 2019 selection includes five nurse scientists to join the ranks of others currently filling this role. 

Ambassadors are selected from a national pool of applicants based on their abilities to advance public, health professions, and policy-maker awareness of the critical research agenda linked to the National Institute for Nursing Research (NINR).

These highly-qualified individuals, many of whom function in the scientific community, will focus specifically on educating Congressional leaders as to the high-impact and cost-effective treatments and quality-of-life enhancements that emanate from nursing science.  Ultimately, the goal is to increase research funding to ensure the training of scientists at a time of major scientific breakthroughs and to promote the NINR mission and strategy.

NINR goals include improving the health of individuals, families, and communities through developing nurse scientists of the 21st century, and conducting research on health and illness, symptom management, wellness, chronic conditions, end-of-life and palliative care, and innovation. 

New Ambassadors include:

Kristin Ashford, PhD, WHNP-BC, FAAN
University of Kentucky College of Nursing

Laden Eshkevari, PhD, CRNA, L.A.c, FAAN
Georgetown University School of Nursing and Health Studies

Linda Flynn, PhD, RN, FAAN
Rutgers, The State University School of Nursing

Hurdis M. Griffith, PhD, RN, FAAN
Emeritus Professor
Rutgers, the State University School of Nursing

Lusine Poghosyan, PhD, MPH, RN, FAAN
Columbia University School of Nursing

FNINR President Connie White Delaney commented that all of our Ambassadors “Are exquisitely positioned to use science powered by highly-trained nurses to generate cures, reduce symptoms and side-effects, and promote health and wellbeing aimed at individuals, families, and communities.” 

This is the College's second FNINR Ambassador (Dr. Ellen Hahn was in the inaugural cohort), and now Dr. Ashford will be on the frontline in helping to educate policy makers on both state and federal levels on the importance of nursing research and the necessary funding required to support the health and wellbeing of al Americans. Dr. Ashford will be one of a select few in the country to be the go-to experts in delivering NINR's message at the regional nursing research conferences and other venues, as well as a respected resource to local media and Congressional members and staff.

Dr. Ashford received her BSN from Washburn University, Topeka, Kan., and a master's degree in nursing from the University of Louisville. She received her PhD in nursing from the University of Kentucky in 2007 and is an associate professor in the College of Nursing.

Dr. Ashford began her research career as an NIH BIRCWH (Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health) Scholar. She currently serves as PI on an NIH COBRE (Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence) study in which she leads a multicenter trial across two states. She is administrator of the Kentucky GIFTS (Giving Infants and Families Tobacco-free Starts) program, working jointly with the Kentucky Department of Public Health to provide smoking cessation and wellness services to prenatal and postpartum women across Appalachia.

Dr. Ashford was named the 2010 Nurse Researcher of the Year by the Kentucky Nurses Association Nursing Education and Research Cabinet. She also received the Outstanding Early Career College/University Teacher Award from the Kentucky Academy of Science.