Gayle L. Casterline, PhD, RN, AHN-BC

WCSI Faculty Associate
WCSI Caritas Coach®
Professor of Nursing at Gardner-Webb University, NC


Dr. Gayle L. Casterline is currently thriving in an academic environment that values living human caring science professionally and personally. Her teaching responsibilities focus on graduate nursing students in the MSN and DNP programs. As coordinator of the DNP program, Dr. Casterline uses caring pedagogy to influence the use of caring theory in all interactions and relationships and in all practice settings. She currently teaches nursing theory, administration and finance, scholarly inquiry, and advises students developing thesis research and DNP. Dr. Casterline earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees in nursing at the University of Pittsburgh and a doctorate in nursing at Loyola University Chicago. She has studied with Dr. Jean Watson and with Dr. Rosemarie Rizzo Parse.

Dr. Casterline has enjoyed a blessedly varied career in nursing practice, education, research, and administration. Early in her career she presented and published extensively on arthritis, lupus, and scleroderma care, and received an Arthritis Foundation Research Fellowship and the State of Ohio Governor’s Special Recognition Award. She also coordinated research protocols for the care of children and adults with hemophilia and HIV/AIDS. She has enjoyed over twenty years teaching nursing in universities in Ohio, California, Louisiana, Illinois, South Carolina, and North Carolina. She has varied leadership experience including data manager, hospital department head, and Associate Dean in an academic setting. She has participated in developing and evaluating multiple nursing curriculums, and has served as a CCNE evaluator for national nursing accreditation. Dr. Casterline has been an active member of the International Association of Human Caring, the American Holistic Nurses Association, and Sigma Theta Tau International. She is currently certified as an advanced holistic nurse.

Dr. Casterline has been part of the Caritas Coach® faculty since its inception in 2008. She has also served as a primary faculty advisor for the doctoral program in caring science. Her research interests include spirituality and health, praying and quality of life, sacred acts of providing comfort care, caring pedagogy, and ethical leadership. She has enjoyed national and international experiences with WCSI, including conferences in Japan and South Africa. In her personal life, Gayle has a husband who likes to cook (!), two married sons, and a 5 year old grand-daughter. Those activities bringing significant peace and wholeness to her life include congregational caring, music, reading, traveling, and creating things – writing, crafts, and gardens!