2017 Conference Speakers

Kathleen Reeve

As Associate Dean, I am the administrator with primary responsibility for the academic affairs of the College of Nursing. I oversee the development and implementation of the curriculum, implement and assess policies and procedures annually related to student progression, schedule courses and faculty teaching load each semester.

I have completed  post master's certificate programs in both Adult Nurse Practitioner and Family Nurse Practitioner. I hold an advanced practice nursing license in the State of Texas and I am board certified through the American Nurses Credentialing Center and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioner. I have taught graduate education for over 20 years predominantly advanced practice.  I have maintained a faculty practice in primary  care locations throughout my career. My current practice is at a community healthcare facility for the uninsured.


Mari Galang

Mari T. Galang, MSN, RN, AGACNP is an Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner in one of the busy Infectious Diseases practice group in the Texas Medical Center. She started her nursing career after graduating with an Associate’s Degree from Kingwood Community College in 2007. She then went on to get her Bachelor’s degree and her Master’s Degree from the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. Mari has a variety of experience from the General-Surgical Telemetry Unit to Cardiovascular Critical Care. She now collaborates with her physicians in the care of patients in the spectrum of infectious diseases - from cellulitis, HIV/AIDS to post-transplant opportunistic infections.

She has been a member of the Houston Area Nurse Practitioners organization since 2012. After becoming a NP she went on to be an active and involved member and has been at work in the Education Committee. Ms. Galang holds multiple certifications in her areas of practice, including CCRN-CMC-CSC, FCCS and also trained as a post-Master’s Trauma Certificate Program at UTHSC. She is also a member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America.

She is an avid dreamer, an introvert by nature and has a fine appreciation for savory comfort food. 


Paula Westergren

Paula Westergren graduated from UTMB in 1993 with a Bachelor's in Nursing and began her nursing career at St. Joseph's Hospital in Houston, Texas working S/MICU as a night shift charge nurse. After ten years at St. Joseph's Hospital, Paula began working at Houston Methodist in The Medical Center as Transplant Coordinator. While working as the Liver Transplant Coordinator, Paula went back to school and graduated with an advanced practice degree froM TWU. In her role as a Nurse Practitioner, Paula transitioned to Hepatology Research where her responsibilities include identifying recruits for clinical trials, collaborating with the research team, and providing support to accomplish the goals of the trials.


Sara Wood

Sara Wood graduated in 2002 from the University of Texas Adult and Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner program at UT Health Science Center Houston, with a minor in Addictions Treatment. She is licensed as a psychiatric nurse practitioner and has provided care for patients at Menninger Clinic, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Memorial Hermann Prevention and Recovery Center, and UTMB Correctional Managed Care, in addition to private practice settings.

She has also been a clinical instructor at UT School of Nursing, and a preceptor for many students. She served as Secretary of HANP from 2011 to 2013 and as President of Psychiatric Advanced Practice Nurses – Houston, from 2013 to 2014. She has also served on the Government Affairs Committee of TNP, and is currently on the TNP Mental Health Advisory Committee.



Michael Pudlo

Michael Pudlo has been involved in heart failure care since 2012. He developed an in-patient and out-patient Heart Failure Disease Management Service at Houston Methodist Hospital. Michael has given Heart Feailure letures to health care professionals, leaders, and community members that include topics of self care management strategies and HF - updates in care, and options in treatment. He has given six Poster Presentations at National Conferences from topics ranging from Quality Care Metrics to Updates in CardioMEMS Program. 


Steve Branham


Dr. Branham has made outstanding contributions to the Nurse Practitioner role in many ways including clinician, professor, entrepreneur and researcher. He was one of the first nationally certified Acute Care Nurse Practitioners trained in Texas, graduating from The University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston in 1996. Dr. Branham is known as an expert clinician. He used his clinical expertise to develop two nurse practitioner programs and was responsible for training over 260 ACNPs. Dr. Branham is sought after as a local/national presenter and frequently consulted on issues affecting the ACNP role.