Dr. Tari Dilks, associate professor of nursing at McNeese State University, has been named the Louisiana recipient of the 2011 State Award for Nurse Practitioner Excellence from the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
The award, founded in 1991, recognizes a nurse practitioner from each state that demonstrates excellence in practice, research, nurse practitioner education or community affairs. The AANP will present the awards during its 26th National Conference June 22-26 in Las Vegas, Nev
"Dr. Dilks is one of our distinguished McNeese nursing faculty who displays professionalism in all of her work-the classroom, graduate studies, her professional associations in nursing and the community," said Dr. Peggy Wolfe, dean of McNeese's College of Nursing. "Not only is she well-respected in nursing, but also in the field of counseling psychology. She exemplifies the commitment and dedication it takes to succeed in the nursing profession. I am proud to say Tari is one of our own McNeese nursing graduates and is highly deserving of this prestigious award."
Dilks said she is very honored to have been nominated by her fellow nurse practitioners in Southwest Louisiana for this award and even more humbled when she was selected to represent the state of Louisiana.
"It is wonderful to have my work for nurse practitioners in the state and in our region, as well as my contributions as an educator and a psychiatric nurse practitioner, recognized," said Dilks. "My patients and students are the reason I stay in this rewarding profession. My students encourage me to stretch my knowledge base and stay current in the field and my patients keep me firmly grounded about what is really important. I love what I do and I am deeply appreciative."
Dilks obtained her doctorate in nurse practitioner/family psychology from the University of Tennessee, her Master of Science in Nursing degree and her Master of Arts degree in psychology both from McNeese and her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from West Texas State University.
She directs the psychiatric nurse practitioners program for the Intercollegiate Consortium for a Master of Science in Nursing partnership involving McNeese, Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
At McNeese, she is a member of the College of Nursing Clinic and Continuing Education committees and the Curriculum and Communication committees for the ICMSN.
In addition, Dilks practices as a psychiatric nurse practitioner and as a mental health counselor within the community. Dilks is certified or licensed as a family nurse practitioner, an adult psychiatric nurse practitioner, a family psychiatric nurse practitioner and a professional counselor in Louisiana.
She is a currently president of the Louisiana chapter of the American Psychiatric Nurses Association, executive board secretary of the Louisiana Association of Nurse Practitioners and a member of numerous state, national and international organizations.
Dilks is a recipient of the Fred and Ruth B. Zigler Foundation Professorship in Nursing and the Fannie Edith Winn Educational Trust Professorship in Nursing as well as a Pinnacle Excellence Award recipient for the College of Nursing.
The AANP was founded in 1985 and is the oldest, largest and only full-service national professional organization for nurse practitioners of all specialties. With more than 31,000 individual members and over 165 group members, AANP provides representation for approximately 140,000 nurse practitioners around the country.