Have you had “aha” moments in your life? Times when you finally understood something so completely that you could now fully explain it to someone else? Perhaps you had an aha moment after a session at the recent ONS Congress or after reading an article in the Oncology Nursing Forum or Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing. Or maybe you finally understood the benefits of dual inhibition of ER+ metastatic breast cancer with antihormonal therapy and CDK4/6 inhibitors after reviewing the recent infographic included with your ONS journal mailing in May.

"We want to help you to grow as a leader because we know that the future of oncology care depends on you."

I had one of those aha moments when riding the bus to work as I read a nurse’s reflection about her experiences while caring for her father following a serious abdominal surgery. Amy Lower described the view from the other side of health care that is a sad reality for too many patients and family members: care that is clearly less than ideal and far from patient centered. My aha moment was that we need to continue to develop and engage nurse leaders who will change this story because they are committed to advancing excellence in quality cancer care. I get to do that work in my role as a teacher and in my volunteer leadership role as ONS president.  

Serving on the ONS Board of Directors has many fun and exciting aspects, including the opportunity to work with dedicated volunteer and staff leaders who are smart and challenge my thinking. The best part so far, though, has been the chance to encourage others to grow as leaders: to discover strengths and hone communication skills that are sometimes outside of their comfort zones. As a board member, I lead and participate in discussions with volunteers and staff about the strategic direction for our professional home. We work together to provide meaningful resources and services that support nurses to do their best: to give the kind of care that they would want for their father or mother or anyone they love. That’s why I am a board member.  

Do you share this passion? As an ONS board member, you could make a significant contribution to the future of cancer care. If this is an aha moment for you, commit today to learning more about how you could serve in this important role. You could start by taking ONS’s free Board Leadership: Nurses in Governance online course, which also offers 4.78 CNE contact hours free for ONS members. Then, check out the candidate resource materials at ONS.org to learn more about what could be in it for you and your employer.  

In 2020, we will elect three new directors-at-large. Letters of intent are due August 5, 2019, and the application deadline is August 19. Leadership Development Committee and ONS board members are available to answer your questions and offer their advice. We want to help you to grow as a leader because we know that the future of oncology care depends on you.