Dr. Linda Plank Appointed Dean of Baylor Louise Herrington School of Nursing

April 12, 2021

Dear Faculty and Staff:

I am pleased to share with you that Linda Plank, Ph.D., RN, NEA-BC, who has served commendably since last summer as Interim Dean of Baylor University's Louise Herrington School of Nursing (LHSON), has been selected to serve as Dean in an official capacity, effective May 1. I express my sincerest appreciation to our 11-member search committee, chaired by School of Music Dean Gary Mortenson, for their valuable time and service to the University during this successful nationwide search process.

Dr. Plank succeeds Shelley F. Conroy, Ed.D., MS, RN, CNE, who served with distinction for eight years as Dean of the LHSON.

Dr. Plank has garnered the respect of the LHSON faculty and staff. They appreciate her commitment to our students and her care for faculty and staff. In addition, academic leaders on the Waco campus as well as donors and alumni have expressed considerable appreciation for her collaborative style as well as her talent in leading growth in graduate programs.

As Dean of the LHSON, Dr. Plank will work alongside 1,100 students, 55 full-time faculty members and 48 part-time faculty as she leads Baylor's nursing academic enterprise and its strategic plan for the future growth through an engaging Christian academic culture that supports excellence and intellectual curiosity in teaching, research, scholarship, leadership, practice and service in a rapidly changing health care field.

Before her service as Interim Dean, Dr. Plank served as Clinical Associate Professor and Senior Associate Dean of Academic Affairs at LHSON. She is a Baylor University graduate, earning her B.S. in nursing, an M.S. from Texas Woman’s University and her Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Arlington. She is nationally certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) as a Nurse Executive Advanced (NEA-BC).

After graduating from Baylor in 1977, she began as a Registered Nurse at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, where she worked for more than three decades as an RN, a nursing administrator and eventually as Vice President for Medical-Surgical Nursing. In 2008, she was recruited by her alma mater to begin a teaching career, starting as a nursing lecturer in 2009.

In April 2012, Dr. Plank was appointed Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at LHSON. In 2015, she added the newly created Clinical Track to her role, beginning with the rank of Clinical Assistant Professor and later promotion to Clinical Associate Professor in 2018. She has taught in the undergraduate program, the accelerated FastBacc BSN Track and the graduate program, including courses in Management and Leadership, Professional Nursing Development: Consumer of Research, Health Assessment Lab, Nursing Informatics, Issues in Health Care and Practice, and Budgeting and Health Care Finance for Nursing Leadership. In 2019, she was appointed Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Interim Dean on July 1, 2020.

Please join me in congratulating Dr. Plank on her appointment as Dean of Baylor's Louise Herrington School of Nursing and for her leadership continuing the nursing school's steadfast legacy of preparing the next generation of Baccalaureate and Graduate level nurses, within a Christian community, for professional practice, healthcare leadership and worldwide service.


Nancy Brickhouse, Ph.D.

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