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NYU College of Nursing’s Dr. Tara A. Cortes is Named One of the New York Women’s Agenda 2011 STARS

November 21, 2011
N-134, 2011-12

Dr. Cortes is being honored at the annual STAR breakfast, Tuesday, December 6, 2011

New York University College of Nursing’s Dr. Tara A. Cortes, PhD, RN, FAAN, Executive Director of the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing and professor of Geriatric Nursing is named one of the New York Women’s Agenda (NYWA) 2011 STARS at their annual STAR Breakfast, Tuesday, December 6, 2011.    

NYWA is a coalition of women professionals, organizations, and community activists who support the diversity and interests of NY women through collaboration, advocacy, and education.  Dr. Cortes is being honored for exemplifying the qualities embodied in NYWA’s mission to advocate and collaborate for the interests of New York women in public policy decisions. 

“I am so honored to receive this award offered by an organization which values the quality of life of vulnerable women in New York City,” said Dr. Cortes.  “My work and that of the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing at NYU College of Nursing are focused on advancing interdisciplinary models across the continuum of care to support healthy aging in place and to promote access of care to vulnerable populations. I look forward to continuing this work which also supports the mission of the NY Women's Agenda,” she said.

As Executive Director of the Hartford Institute, Dr. Cortes brings her leadership, experience and wisdom  to enhance select respected existing programs in the Institute and to develop new and innovative initiatives.

The consistent theme across her work is the essential role of advanced practice nurses  improving the quality of life in specific patient populations, and the interdisciplinary nature of health care.

Dr. Cortes is a leader in developing, evaluating, and implementing advanced nursing practice and collaborative practice. Her work has contributed to advancing interdisciplinary models across the continuum of care to reduce disparities in access to care, and to assure healthy aging in place.  She has helped change policy and practice in geriatric care and in low-vision and blindness care  by developing roles for advanced practice nurses to provide care to those with poor access to resources due to lack of knowledge or functional disabilities.

Prior to joining the NYU College of Nursing, Dr. Cortes was President and CEO of Lighthouse International, a leading not-for-profit organization, dedicated to fighting vision loss and helping people prevent vision impairment. She mindfully transformed the organization to a health care provider from a social charity, and was recognized worldwide for her leadership in helping to move the field of vision loss to health care from that of disability. Dr. Cortes spent the initial phase of her career in nursing education at Hunter College, and then as the Head of Nursing Research and Information Systems at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center. She was the Chief Nursing Officer at Rockefeller University Hospital and continued her career in nursing and hospital administration at Mount Sinai Medical Center and at Bridgeport Hospital, before assuming the senior leadership role at Lighthouse International.

Dr. Cortes has been a globally recognized leader advocating for government decision makers to recognize and support eye disease as a health priority, and facilitate access to treatments and low vision rehabilitation worldwide. She served on the Boards of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness and the AMD Alliance International, and was appointed by the New York State Governor to the Executive Board of the Commission for the Blind and Visually Handicapped.


Dr. Cortes is a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and a Fellow of the New York Academy of Medicine.  She is a Past Fellow of the prestigious Robert Wood Johnson Executive Nurse Fellows Program.

She received the Distinguished Alumni Award from New York University, where she completed her PhD and Masters degrees. Her BSN is from Villanova University, where she served on the Board of Trustees, and was recently awarded the Medallion for Outstanding Contributions to the Profession. Dr. Cortes serves on the Board of the Visiting Nurse Regional Health Care System, the Board of the National Accreditation Council for the Blind and Visually Handicapped, and on the US Army New York City Community Advisory Board.


About New York University College of Nursing

The College of Nursing is one of the leading nursing programs in the United States. It offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; Master of Arts and Post-Master’s Certificate Programs; a Doctor of Philosophy in Research Theory and Development, and a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree.  For more information, visit

About Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing

The Hartford Institute seeks to shape the quality of health care that older Americans receive by promoting the highest level of geriatric competency in all nurses who deliver care.  By raising the standards of nursing care, the Hartford Institute aims to ensure that people age in comfort and dignity.   Its initiatives include education, practice, research, and policy. For more information, visit

About STAR Breakfast

NYWA’s annual STAR Breakfast brings together more than 1,000 of New York’s most influential leaders to honor those who have dedicated their time and energy to enrich and enhance New York City’s community of women and families. Proceeds from the STAR Breakfast support the programmatic efforts of NYWA all year long.

This Press Release is in the following Topics:
College of Nursing, Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing, Awards

Type: Press Release

Press Contact: Christopher James | (212) 998-6876

NYUCN’s Cortes is Named One of the NY Women’s Agenda 2011 STARS

New York University College of Nursing’s Dr. Tara A. Cortes, PhD, RN, FAAN, Executive Director of the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing and professor of Geriatric Nursing

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