Zoe Sherman grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina, and attended UNC-Chapel Hill, where she received her bachelors. After college, she became a volunteer EMT, during which time she realized she wanted to do more. Zoe then attended the Duke University Physician Assistant Program, graduating in 2001.
While at Duke, Zoe served as the student representative for NCAPA. She felt very valued by the leadership and wanted to continue to stay connected with the organization after graduating, so she became the Chair of the Student Affairs Committee. By this time, Zoe had moved to the Outer Banks and was looking for ways to meet local colleagues. There was no NCAPA regional chapter in the area at that time so, in 2002, she and Dan Lynam, PA-C, formed what is now known as the Outer Banks Advanced Practice Providers (OBX-APP), where Dan serves as President and Zoe serves as Secretary. When they started the chapter, there were about 70 PAs and NPs in northeastern North Carolina; since that time, they have seen that number increase dramatically.
Zoe has spent most of her career in urgent care with Beach Medical Care, where she had done a two-month summer rotation while at Duke. (She even met her husband on that rotation!) Zoe enjoys the relationships she has developed with patients, working in a small community, as well as the variety of tourists she is able to help during the summer. She feels it is important to have a good time during her day while she spends “time helping folks understand what’s going on with their health so they can make decisions and get why (she is) recommending that behavior change or that pill. This usually involves a lot of colorful analogies and the use of hand gestures.”
Today, we find ourselves in the midst of a pandemic, during which time Zoe continues to lead and inspire. She reports:
“I am proud of the work done by our state PA leaders. We know NC often leads the way in national trends in rules and legislation. Now, during this time of tension and “hurry up and wait” for the COVID 19 wave to crest, we see our leadership at NCAPA influence legislation making it easier for PAs to cross over to different areas of practice and help cover gaps as they may arrive, (and made this happen before it was too late); advocate to Governor Cooper to help provide resources to patients and facilities as well as more PPE for PAs; and connect us to reliable sources of information and guidance on our response to COVID 19.
One of the greatest assets to each other right now is just being there, especially in a nonpublic way. Not all of us work directly with a large number of advanced practice providers and those of you who do know there is tremendous value in being able to share a story, vent stress, or tell jokes with colleagues who are also in the same boat. I am grateful for the random times that I connect in this way with friends I met through our chapter. I am fortunate to be surrounded by a supportive family who check in with me daily. I am thankful to have a caring community, including construction contractors who have dropped off n95 masks, folks who are at home who have volunteered to sew homemade masks, and patients who have simply expressed their thanks. We really are all in this together.”
Thank you for helping to lead the way, Zoe!