Dr. Johnson has approximately 20 years of nursing practice with experience in acute care and community based care settings. Her work at a federally qualified community health center provided the impetus for the development of her dissertation with a focus on models of community governance and the impact on social determinants of health.
Dr. Johnson served as the Magnet® Program Director and System Director for Nursing Professional Practice at Dartmouth-Hitchcock where she successfully led them through their second Magnet® designation. She has is well versed with all aspects of Magnet® designation and is experienced in the design, implementation, and evaluation of shared governance models, professional practice models and nursing advancement models. She has assisted organizations on their Magnet® journey through mock site reviews and document submission. Her experiences include strategic planning and building the infrastructure to support research and evidence-based practice. Paula's collaborative leadership style led to improvements in clinical quality outcomes, nursing satisfaction scores, specialty certification and academic advancement goals. Her responsibilities at Dartmouth-Hitchcock included two cutting edge initiatives in nursing and health care. She was responsible for the development and implementation of the Vizient Nurse Residency Program and calling on her community experience, she expanded the competency program for nursing to the ambulatory care settings.
Paula is currently the Director of Quality, Safety and Value and the MPD for Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, and is leading the organization toward its fifth Magnet® designation.
She serves as adjunct nursing faculty for undergraduate and graduate nursing programs in the region.
As President of her Nursing Honor Society, she led the board of directors in achieving local chapter status of Sigma Theta Tau, International Honor Society for Nursing (Psi Sigma Chapter).
Dr. Johnson holds the Doctor of Arts in Leadership (Franklin Pierce University), the MPA (Suffolk University), a MSN (Franklin Pierce University) and the BSN (University of Massachusetts Amherst). She has Green Belt certification through the Value Institute at Dartmouth-Hitchcock.
"Thank you for helping us on our way to Magnet® status. I know your visits to us and your advice steered us on this journey. We value your input.”