North Idaho College has selected internal candidate Lita Burns, Ph.D., as its new vice president for instruction. Burns, who currently serves as dean of Health Professions and Nursing, will begin her new role Aug. 27. “Lita is well-prepared to take on the challenges and opportunities we’ll face in the near and long term and I couldn’t be more pleased to have her as a member of this team as we move forward,” said NIC President Joe Dunlap, Ed.D. “She has provided continuous and effective leadership to faculty and ensured meaningful program development and quality instruction for our students.”
Burns was selected to fill the position vacated by Jay Lee, who accepted a job as president of Northeastern Junior College in Sterling, Colo. Jim Perez, who has served as interim vice president for instruction as well as vice president of student services, will continue to aid in the transition.
Burns has led NIC’s Health Professions and Nursing Division since 2001: first as director and most recently as dean. While leading the division, Burns played a leading role in developing a physical therapist assistant program at NIC, represented NIC in a statewide effort that garnered about $500,000 in grant funding for the college and actively participated in the NIC Foundation’s capital campaign that led to the construction of the Meyer Health and Sciences Building.
Before working at NIC, Burns was a division chair of Allied Health, an associate professor at Central Wyoming College, a registered nurse at Columbia Riverton Memorial Hospital in Wyoming and a nursing director at The Children’s Hospital in Denver, among other professional activities.
Burns holds a doctorate from Gonzaga University, a master’s degree in ambulatory pediatric nursing from the University of Colorado and a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Wyoming.
Burns her husband, Ralph, and two children, Matthew and Marie, have resided in Coeur d’Alene since 2001.