A Message from the President: New School of Nursing dean selected

Dear faculty, staff, students and residents:

At the beginning of National Nurses Week, when we thank and celebrate all nurses, it gives me great pleasure to announce the appointment of Sonya Renae Hardin, PhD, MBA/MHA, CCRN, NP-C, FAAN, as Dean of the UT Health San Antonio School of Nursing. Dr. Hardin will assume the position on June 6, 2022, replacing Dean Eileen Breslin who has successfully served in the role for 14 years.

Dr. Hardin is currently a tenured Professor and Dean of the School of Nursing at the University of Louisville in Kentucky, a position she has held since 2018. Prior to that appointment, she served as Professor and Associate Dean of Graduate Nursing Programs at East Carolina University and Professor and Coordinator of the NP program at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Dr. Hardin has had a distinguished career touching all aspects of academic nursing, including working in administrative and leadership positions on the inpatient, outpatient and academic sides of health care. She has held hospital positions that included Chief Nursing Officer, membership on the University of Louisville Hospital Board and co-management of a neurology practice. In academic health care, she served as Program Coordinator of a nurse practitioner program, a dual degree program in health administration. Her proven expertise in acute and critical care nursing has been recognized with an appointment to the task force of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing to revise standards for educating critical care nurses.

In the realm of research and scholarship, Dr. Hardin has identified collaborative opportunities to advance the health of her community. Her authoritative research on aging and the management of chronic diseases has been supported by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). Dr. Hardin is recognized for building strong collaborations between academia and industry parties and by working across academic units, as well as multiple campuses, to ensure university success. She has partnered with bioengineers, mechanical engineers and electrical engineers to pursue patents of biomedical technology devices and to receive funding through the National Science Foundation.

Fundraising and managing finances are among Dr. Hardin’s strengths. She is a principled leader who builds collaboration and consensus while establishing priorities to help institutions achieve their strategic vision. She is a proponent of diversity, equity and inclusion and also a strong advocate for nursing within the institutions and communities she has served.

Dr. Hardin is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (BSN and MSN), the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center (PhD in nursing), Pfeiffer University in Misenheimer, NC, (MBA/MHA) and East Carolina University (NP certificate).

Our UT Health San Antonio School of Nursing stands at the threshold of many exciting opportunities. With Dr. Hardin’s diverse background and considerable strengths, I look forward to the partnership between Dr. Hardin and our talented School of Nursing faculty, staff and students.

I extend my heartfelt gratitude to Dean Eileen Breslin for building an extraordinary and enduring legacy of accomplishments for the School of Nursing. I also am very grateful to Dr. Jacqueline Mok, Vice President for Academic, Faculty and Student Affairs, to members of the search advisory committee and many members of the faculty, staff and student body who were actively engaged in this important search process. The guidance and input I received from all constituencies have proven invaluable to me in this selection process.

I know that you will join me in providing Dr. Hardin your warmest welcome to UT Health San Antonio.


With anticipation, appreciation and respect,


William L. Henrich, MD, MACP

President and Professor of Medicine

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