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2019 NPA Board of Directors
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Michelle Appelbaum, PhD, FNP, PNP


Dr. Michelle Gellman Appelbaum has been a nurse practitioner for over 25 years. She enjoys working in pediatrics at New Windsor Pediatrics in New Windsor, NY. She has a special interest in developmental disabilities, autism  and ADHD and precepts NP students for their pediatric component. Dr. Appelbaum holds a PhD from Columbia University. She as published several articles and has presented on these topics. 

Michelle was honored to be The NPA Nurse Practitioner of the Year in 2013. She has served at President of the Greater Newburgh group.



Alice Looney, BSN, MSN, CBN, ANP-C

Immediate Past President

 Alice graduated from Mount Saint Mary College with her MSN. She has been practicing as an Adult Health Nurse Practitioner for more than 10 years, with 5 years in cardiology and 5 years in bariatrics. Alice is currently practicing in pain management.




David Goede, DNP, ACNP-BC

President Elect

David is a board certified Acute Care Nurse Practitioner. He obtained his associate degree from Jamestown Community College, Bachelor of nursing from University of Buffalo, Masters of Science in Advanced Practice Nursing and his Doctorate of Nursing Practice (2013) from the University of Rochester. His primary appointment is as an Assistant Professor of Clinical Nursing at the University of Rochester School of Nursing and secondary appointment as a Cardiothoracic NP at Strong Memorial Hospital. He has been a member of The NPA for over 10 years and has served various board positions for Region 2 and the Greater Rochester Group. He has also chaired/coordinated the Region annual conference and has been a member of The NPA Conference Committee since 2014.

Rebecca Rigolosi, DNP, ANP, FAANP


Dr. Rebecca Rigolosi is a board certified Adult Nurse Practitioner and has been a member of The NPA since joining as a student 20 years ago. She has served as Regional Director for Region 6, Secretary to The Board of Directors, and President of The NPA. She teaches in both Undergraduate and Graduate Nursing programs, and is a Certified Clinical Documentation Specialist. She is a recipient of the American Association of Nurse Practitioner’s New York State Award for Clinical Excellence and was inducted as a Fellow of The American Association of Nurse Practitioners in 2015. She currently works at Columbia University Medical Center in Vascular Surgery.

Audrieanna Raciti, MS, FNP


Audrieanna is currently a nurse practitioner in New York State. She graduated from the Mohawk Valley Community College in 2010 with her Associates in nursing. Audrieanna obtained her Bachelors in 2012 and then went on to obtain her Masters in Family Nurse Practitioner at the State University of New York Polytechnic Institute. She is currently working at the Digestive Disease Medicine as a full time nurse practitioner and is actively pursuing her PhD. Audrieanna has served as a representative to the Mohawk Valley Group. On a professional level, she is interested in volunteering, lobbying and attending conferences. She also enjoys spending time with her family, ballet, piano and hiking in the Adirondacks and reading. 

Stephen Ferrara, DNP, FNP-BC, FAANP

Executive Director

Dr. Stephen Ferrara is a practicing nurse practitioner with over 15 years of clinical experience. In addition to serving as The NPA's part-time Executive Director, Stephen is the Associate Dean of Clinical Affairs and Assistant Professor at the Columbia University School of Nursing in New York. He also has experience in college, correctional, occupational and men's health. Stephen holds a Bachelors degree in both biology and nursing. Dr. Ferrara has served The NPA as Membership Chairperson and was elected to the positions of Treasurer and President-elect. He has lectured at numerous conferences. Stephen has a passion for health care technology and integrating evidence-based practice into daily practice. * The Executive Director is a non-voting member of the Board.

Jill Muntz, DNP, FNP-C

Region 1 Director

Jill is a practicing nurse practitioner at WNY Urology Associates in Jamestown, NY. She has been a nurse for over 30 years. Jill received her BSN from Alfred University in 1983 and her MSN from Gannon University, Erie, PA in 1998. She is currently working on her DNP from Gannon University. Jill is licensed to practice in both New York and Pennsylvania. Her clinical experience includes primary care, pediatrics, school health, allergy and immunology, addiction medicine and urology. Jill has served as adjunct faculty in Nursing at Jamestown Community College and has precepted FNP students from Gannon University and Daeman College, Buffalo, NY. She has served as secretary for the Southern Tier Group and is currently serving as Region 1 Director on The NPA board. 


Desiree' M. Branson, DNP, RN, FNP-C

Region 2 Director 

Dr. Desiree’ Branson has been a board certified Family Nurse Practitioner for over 12 years. She obtained her Bachelor of Nursing, Masters of Science in Nursing and her Doctorate of Nursing Practice (2015) from the University of Rochester, School of Nursing. Dr. Branson is full-time faculty, Visiting Assistant Professor, at St. John Fisher College, Wegmans School of Nursing. She has worked for the University of Rochester for over 16 years and currently maintains her clinical practice in Vascular Surgery at Strong Memorial Hospital. She also works for United Health Care – Optum; House Call Team, providing in-home assessments and education for high risk members to reduce gaps in care. Desiree is an active member of Sigma Theta Tau – Epsilon Xi on the Leadership Succession Committee. Dr. Branson has served on the Board of Directors for the past four years-and currently is past-President of the NPA Region 2. She has chaired this Region’s annual Education Conference and has been an active member of the NPA for over 10 years.

Melissa Reynolds, FNP

Region 3 Director 

Melissa Reynolds is a Family Nurse Practitioner certified by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. She earned her Master of Science in Nursing Degree from SUNY Upstate Medical University in 2010. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Keuka College. She is currently pursuing her DNP at the University of Buffalo. She has a nineteen year career in nursing which includes eight years as a Family Nurse Practitioner. Her clinical experience as an FNP includes Internal Medicine, Pediatric primary care, Urgent Care and most recently working in her local county health department. She provides care for the STD clinic, PrEP program, primary care at the county correctional facility, and sports physicals/acute care visits for Jefferson Community College students. Melissa has also worked as adjunct faculty for Keuka College teaching at the Baccalaureate level. In 2016, Melissa was awarded a grant from the National Asthma Learning Collaboration led by the EPA. Her grant work focused on creating interventions to reduce the burden of asthma in the pediatric population in the School-Based Health Center setting. She presented her project at the NY School-Based Health Alliance Conference in 2016. Melissa has previous board experience serving on the NY School-Based Health Alliance board and serving as the President Elect, President and Immediate Past President for region 3 of the NPA.

David Dempsey, DNP, FNP-BC

Region 4 Director

I have been a nurse for 30 years, 15 of those as an FNP, graduating from a 2-year program led to a position in Chicago in the ICU/CCU. Then moving to the Emergency Room and eventually ending up in the Trauma Unit at Cook County Hospital. At the same time completing my BS and serving as a Reserve Officer in the Army Nurse Corps with the 801st General Hospital, this led to my return to active duty military service, spending 4 1/2 years in Europe working the MICU and SICU also doing some neonatal transports to the U.S.

On my return to the U.S. I was assigned to Ft. Leonard Wood, MO, working in the ICU. I was given a dual assignment as Head Nurse ICU for the 93rd Evacuation Hospital and later deployed on Operation Desert Storm. Released from activity duty and returning to civilian nursing took a job in Baton Rouge, LA as Head Nurse of a Med-Surge/Oncology Unit. Returned to graduate school at Southern Univ. to obtain a MSN in family health nursing and doing some contract nursing in the ICU, ED, Burn Unit and hospital based home health with a focus of women and children. Upon graduation began with a private practice in primary care. After a year in the practice, I left to manage a rural health clinic, ending up in a FQHC that served the homeless population of Baton Rouge. I moved my family to upstate NY after Katerina and took a position in a hospital based out-patient clinic providing primary care. In 2008 returned to obtain a DNP from Chatham University. I continue to work in an out-patient clinic providing primary care in Northern NY.


Marietta Api, MS, ACNP-BC

Region 5 Director

Marietta Api has been practicing as an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner for Cardiology at Montefiore Hospital for over 20 years. She received her BSN from Hunter-Bellevue in 1971, and her MSN from Lehman College in the Bronx, N.Y. A Post Masters Certificate as an ACNP was obtained from College of New Rochelle in 1996. After 25 years as an ICU nurse, educator and Critical Care Clinical Nurse Specialist, she wrote and accepted a position in Cardiology as an Acute Care Cardiology Nurse position, caring for in- patients, and expanding later to outpatient areas.

Marietta has traveled the United States, lecturing and sharing information about cardiovascular disease to health care personnel, patients and families, learning from other expert nurse practitioners. She has nurtured our young, precepting over 26 RNs and NPs, acting as a role model. Marietta was a past officer in The NPA and now serves as the Region 5 Director. Marietta has also been very active in the the Lower Hudson Valley Group. 

Semi-retired now, Marietta serves as a member of The NPA Conference Committee, learning from our present State officers, committee members, and administrative personnel the responsibilities and challenges of an annual conference.

Dorothy Grasso, DNS, RN, FNP, CCRN

Region 6 Director

Dorothy has been working in college health as a Family Nurse Practitioner since 2007. Her long and exciting career began as an LPN and continued right through to the Doctoral level. Working in all levels of nursing in many capacities has given Dorothy her clinical experience and a great respect for the nursing profession. Following the death of her husband in 1999, she became a single mom to two young children but continued her education and setting goals.

Dorothy's LPN and RN experience was in critical care, cardio-thoracic ICU and in the ER. She also worked as a hemodialysis nurse and did supervision in the hospital. She was a staff education instructor, where she taught the critical care course, supervised new nurses in the clinical area and taught ALS and BLS courses. Dorothy taught at Long Island College Hospital school of nursing for 15 years, both full-time and per diem, as an instructor, assistant professor and as Associate Dean. She worked as an assistant professor full time at CUNY (BMCC and SPS) for 12 years as a classroom instructor, online instructor and clinical instructor, and was tenured.

Dorothy's professional affiliations include AACN, Sigma Theta Tau, AANP and The NPA. She served as a Region 6 board member, in varying capacities, for many years. Dorothy is CCRN certified, a BLS provider and a BLS instructor trainer. She received the Phi Theta Kappa Professor of the Year award in 2008. Dorothy has had four publications. In 2010 she participated in two public service programs through a grant from Queens Public Access Television. Our Program on Women’s Health won the community award in our category. Dorothy has presented internationally in the Netherlands and nationally on various topics. She has served on several committees, both college-wide and department level. Dorothy has also assisted with accreditation for middle-states, NLN, JCAHO and AAAHC. Her  research is on the importance of the art of nursing in professional practice, identifying facilitators to practice and identifying barriers to practicing the art of nursing.


Jean Marie Osborne, DNP, ANP-C

Region 7 Director

Dr. Jean Marie Osborne has been practicing as a board certified Adult Nurse Practitioner in the areas of Gastroenterology and Primary Care since 2007. Additionally, she is full-time Assistant Professor at Molloy College in Rockville Centre, Long Island, NY. Dr. Osborne earned a Bachelors and Masters of Science in Nursing and a Post Masters Certificate in Nursing Education from Molloy College; and recently earned a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from Case Western Reserve University. She has been a member of The NPA since 2005 and in 2014 began serving on the Executive Board of the Nurse Practitioner Association of Long Island (NPALI) holding several positions including President-Elect, President, and Immediate Past President.

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