Rachel Boles Created Her Own Path in Nursing

In honor of National Nurses Day and the start of 2020 National Nurses Month, we would like to highlight Rachel Boles, Director of Nursing at Hayward Health Services. Rachel first knew she wanted to be a nurse when she was just 14 years old. Rachel was diagnosed with a genetic blood clotting disorder and spent two weeks in the University of Virginia hospital. Since it was a teaching hospital, medical students loved her (well, her chart anyway)! She had 1st year through 4th year medical students, nursing students, etc. around her 24/7. Out of all these staff, Rachel found it was the nurses who treated her with the most respect and dignity. All the doctors and therapists spoke with her parents her since she was underage. It was the NURSES who impacted her life. Little did she know, that impact would set her up for a successful future.

Rachel is originally from West Virginia. She graduated from Allegany College of Maryland in May of 2009. Her first RN job was at a smaller, rural hospital in Petersburg, WV. After working in the Medical/Surgical unit there for almost a year, she moved to Virginia. There, Rachel also worked at a hospital on their medical/surgical floor. During her time there, Rachel was a huge advocate for employee engagement, recognizing that satisfied employees ultimately give the best care to the patients. Rachel participated in monthly meetings with the Chief Clinical Officer of the hospital and other department heads to discuss internal operations.

In 2012, Rachel’s marriage brought her to Minnesota. While living there, she worked as an agency nurse and then transitioned into hospice. That transition was the pivotal point in her nursing career where she switched to acute care. Rachel says, “Providing care to patients and their families during the most difficult times of their life was the most honorable thing I had done with my nursing career.”

In 2015, Rachel started as the full time night nurse at Hayward Health Services. The facility and the community had everything her hometown did. After all the traveling and changes, she finally felt like she was at home. After working a year as the floor nurse, Director of Operations Rhonda O’Dovero approached her about the Assistant Director of Nursing position. She told Rachel she saw so much potential in her and knew she would go places. To her own shocking surprise, those places have been climbing the ladder at North Shore. Rachel took over the DON role in March of 2018. Rachel states, “The direction and support that my leadership team and mentors have offered me, as well as the love from the residents and families, has kept me on this chosen path. When your heart can find so much happiness and love from the smiles and gestures your residents give, you know you are in the right place.”

Rachel’s advice to anyone would be to follow your heart.

“Challenges are a part of everyday life. Embrace the challenges and don’t be afraid of change.  Stay true to yourself and you will find that you are exactly where you are meant to be.” – Rachel Boles

In 2019, Rachel received the North Shore Healthcare North Star Award for Director of Nursing of the Year.