Dr. Kathleen Hirthler joined Wilkes in 2010 and served in a variety of roles in the Passan School of Nursing, including as chair of graduate nursing programs. She has nearly 25 years of experience as a board-certified family nurse practitioner with clinical and scholarship interest in adult health, chronic disease management and health care informatics. Hirthler has developed five new graduate nursing programs at Wilkes including the University’s first Ph.D.
In addition to her role at Wilkes, Hirthler provides direct patient care at Volunteers in Medicine, a free health clinic for the working uninsured in Luzerne County. She is also an on-site evaluator for the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and a member of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, the Pennsylvania Coalition of Nurse Practitioners, Nurse Practitioners of Northeastern Pennsylvania and Sigma Theta Tau International. In 2018 she was recognized by the University with the President’s Award for Excellence in Innovation, recognizing her efforts in promoting programs, ideas and sustainable practices.
In recognition of her excellence in clinical practice, Dr. Kathleen Hirthler has also been honored by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners® as the 2023 recipient of the AANP State Award for Excellence in Pennsylvania.