Cheryl T. Handy MN, RN, NE-BC

WCSI Caritas Coach®
HeartMath Certified Trainer
Associate Nurse Executive
Atlanta VA Healthcare System


Cheryl Handy has spent 35 years of her nursing career with the Veterans Affairs Healthcare System with 28 of those years in nursing leadership roles. Those roles have included Nurse Manager, Nurse Coordinator and Associate Nurse Executive. Her passion and vision for providing conscious, compassionate care and services for veterans have resulted in her 35-year tenure with the VA system. Cheryl is the Associate Nurse Executive for Medical Specialty Care Services with oversight of Cardiology, GI and Pulmonary Services along with the Medical Subspecialty Outpatient Clinics. She also serves as Associate Nurse Executive for Special Projects for Nursing Services. She has been a pioneer in many areas within the VA System. She was instrumental in working with interprofessional team members in opening the first Primary Care Clinics and Community Based Outpatient Clinics for the Atlanta VA. She is also the first Watson Caring Science Caritas Coach and was instrumental in flourishing staff nurses within the Atlanta VA through creative emergence in developing Caritas Centering spaces throughout the Atlanta VA Healthcare System.

Cheryl received a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing from Dillard University in New Orleans and a Master of Nursing with a major in Nursing Administration from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. She also holds an American Nursing Credentialing Center certification as a Nurse Executive. Cheryl will quickly say that her journey as a Caritas Coach has been a deepen awakening for her and has transformed her life immensely both personally and professionally and has liberated her to a consciousness of inner peace no matter what the surrounding circumstances are. She was also instrumental in implementing her Caritas Coach Education Project in Caritas Literacy Education as an avenue to facilitate a forum for caritas literacy and education among nurses and other interprofessional team members through the ongoing implementation of Caritas Literacy Skill Fairs. In addition, she was instrumented in incorporating the core components of Caring Science specifically the 10 Caritas Processes in the RN function statements (position descriptions) at the Atlanta VA.

She is frequently sought out as consultant by professional organizations in the community to provide presentations on Caring Science as well as has been consulted by other VA facilities and Schools of Nursing. Her presentations are titled, “Transformation of Self and Systems through Caritas Literacy Education”. She has presented her work on Caritas Literacy Education at local and national forums inclusive of the International Caritas Consortium.
Cheryl is on a continuous journey of enlightenment through caritas consciousness and is so grateful that Caring Science has given voice and language to an energy that innately resonated within her.