Kathleen “Kathie” Insel, PhD, RN, has been appointed interim dean of the University of Arizona College of Nursing, effective June 1. Dr. Insel replaces Ida “Ki” Moore, PhD, RN, FAAN, who is stepping down as dean to return to her faculty position at the college as the Anne Furrow Endowed Professor.
Dr. Insel, professor of nursing, currently holds leadership positions at both the UArizona College of Nursing and UArizona Health Sciences. In 2020, she was named chair of the College of Nursing’s Biobehavioral Health Science Division after leading the division as interim since September 2018. She also leads Innovations in Healthy Aging, a UArizona Health Sciences initiative and university-wide collaboration to enhance the health of an aging population through research, education and outreach.
“Dr. Moore is a gifted leader who has made significant contributions to the College of Nursing during her 34-year tenure,” said Michael D. Dake, MD, senior vice president for the University of Arizona Health Sciences. “Appointed as dean in June 2019, she expertly guided the college through the many challenges the college faced during the COVID pandemic and worked tirelessly to strengthen the college’s legacy of producing practice-ready graduates while expanding specialty opportunities and growing the college’s outstanding educational and research programs. I look forward to her future achievements at the College of Nursing.
“Dr. Insel is an accomplished nurse-scientist and educator whose collaborative leadership style has advanced the missions of the University of Arizona Health Sciences and the College of Nursing,” Dr. Dake added. “I am confident the College of Nursing will continue to thrive under her guidance during this time of transition as we begin a national search for a new dean.”
As a scientist, Dr. Insel’s research focuses on cognitive function over a person’s lifespan. Specifically, she examines executive function – the processes necessary for the cognitive control of behavior – and working memory to determine the implications on self-management of chronic disease in older adults and school performance in children. She and her research team developed an app based on prospective memory, remembering to do something one intends to do, to increase medication adherence in adults with hypertension.
She has an active history of service and was a member of the Advisory Panel on the Assessment, Prevention, Diagnosis and Treatment Options for the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute. She contributes regularly to National Institutes of Health review panels, particularly for Small Business Innovation Research: Neuro/Psychopathology, Life Span Development and STEM Education programs. As an educator, Dr. Insel is passionate about teaching quantitative research methods and behavioral interventions. She has received numerous teaching and faculty awards.
Dr. Insel earned her bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Wisconsin, Madison; a master’s degree in nursing from the University of Rochester in New York; and a doctorate in educational psychology from the University of Arizona, where she also completed a postdoctoral fellowship. She started her career as a registered nurse and worked in that occupation until 2000. Dr. Insel started her academic career at the University of Texas Health Sciences and joined UArizona in 2002.