Recent News News Archives News Categories

HPU’s Ouimette to retire as dean of nursing; Sutton named successor

BROWNWOOD – April 13, 2022 – Dr. Nina Ouimette, Howard Payne University’s dean of nursing who ushered the institution into a new academic era through her leadership in HPU’s School of Nursing, will retire at the end of the academic year in May. Dr. Laci Sutton, who currently serves as assistant professor of nursing, will begin her new role as dean on June 1.

Dr. Ouimette joined the HPU faculty in 2017. In her five years as nursing dean, she led the university to receive unanimous approval to offer the pre-licensure Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree by the Texas Board of Nursing (summer 2018) and spearheaded HPU’s efforts in earning national accreditation through the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (fall 2021). The university graduated its first cohort of Bachelor of Science in Nursing students in the spring of 2021.

“I could not be more pleased with Dr. Ouimette’s leadership,” said Dr. Cory Hines, HPU president. “Although we will miss her, we are beyond grateful for the impact she has made on our campus, in the lives of our students and through cultivating leaders within her program.”

Dr. Laci Sutton joined the HPU faculty in 2016 as instructor of nursing. Dr. Sutton, a 2009 HPU graduate, became a licensed registered nurse in 2012. She spent most of her nursing career in the medical ICU before returning to HPU. She was instrumental in HPU’s nursing accreditation and licensure efforts, working closely with Dr. Ouimette and HPU administrators.

“She has demonstrated a level of professionalism inside the classroom, has championed the student experience and has played a critical role in helping our School of Nursing get to where it is today,” said Dr. Hines. “I believe the firm foundation that has been built in the School of Nursing is one that will give Dr. Sutton the ability to reach new heights in the years ahead, as we continue to grow our School of Nursing and look to add additional academic programs in the health sciences in the days to come.”

For more information about HPU’s School of Nursing and its academic offerings, visit


Cutline: Dr. Nina Ouimette (right) recently announced plans to retire from her role as dean of HPU’s School of Nursing at the end of the spring semester. Faculty member Dr. Laci Sutton (left) will become dean on June 1.