At NHC, we know that none of the care we provide would be possible without our excellent team of nurses. We’re so grateful to each and every nurse for their commitment to serving their patients and fellow partners.

In honor of National Nurses Month, we’re excited to highlight the story of one person who truly exemplifies what it means to “care in a better way, day by day.” Dorothy “Tooter” Shelton is NHC’s longest tenured, currently working nurse, and she’s dedicated the past 41 years to providing the highest quality of care for her patients at NHC Lewisburg.

Tooter started working as a tech, and then used NHC’s tuition reimbursement to go to nursing school and complete her LPN. She’s beloved by her team and her patients, and many patients even request her when they first admit to the center.

“I had the honor of working with Tooter for 18 years at NHC Lewisburg.  Her dedication and compassion for her patients, families, and partners is second to none,” shared Regional Administrator Scott Bidwell. “She has positively impacted thousands of patient and partner lives over the years.”

When asked to describe her, Tooter’s fellow partners talked about the way she welcomes and treats everyone like family. They share that she loves to smile and joke, and she’s great at making other people smile.

“I was a CNA under Tooter and continued as a fellow nurse, and then ADON. She is an exemplary nurse and mentor,” Regional Nurse Tina Groenveld recalled. “It is an honor to have worked with Tooter for many years. She is a blessing to NHC, and she has touched countless lives of patients, families, and partners.”

Tooter has also inspired many other people to go to nursing school, and she’s even cared for some of her former co-workers when they later became patients.

“I would definitely request for her to be my nurse if needed,” shared NHC Lewisburg Administrator Derrick Scott. “She puts her heart into everything that she does no matter what.  We are all better for knowing her and blessed to have her on our team.  She is NHC Lewisburg!”

Shawna Nymeyer, PhD, VP of Behavioral Health

Murfreesboro, Tenn. –National HealthCare Corporation (NYSE American: NHC) has appointed Shawna Nymeyer, EdD, as vice president of behavioral health. The senior care leader is expanding its behavioral health service line with the opening of two new psychiatric hospitals in 2022. Nymeyer will lead NHC’s behavioral health service line as the company expands to meet the needs of its communities.

Nymeyer brings with her 30 years of experience with previous roles in administration and has served in a clinical capacity as a clinical psychologist. She was most recently the executive director of psychiatry and behavioral health at Horizon-Health Lakewood Health System in Staples, Minnesota.

“Shawna’s extensive background in administration and as a behavioral health provider make her a great fit as we expand our behavioral health service line,” said Steve Flatt, chief executive officer of NHC. “Shawna’s leadership ability and her commitment to providing compassionate behavioral healthcare will provide a solid foundation as we expand our behavioral health services to new communities.”

NHC will open two psychiatric hospitals in Maryland Heights, Missouri and Knoxville, Tennessee in 2022. The Maryland Heights Center for Behavioral Health, a 16-bed geriatric hospital, will provide psychiatric care to geriatric patients. The Knoxville Center for Behavioral Medicine will provide psychiatric care to adults and geriatric patients in the new 64-bed hospital.  NHC currently offers psychiatric care at The Osage Beach Center for Cognitive Disorders in Missouri.

Nymeyer holds a doctorate degree in behavioral health administration from Nova Southeastern University, a post-graduate degree in long term care administration from University of Wisconsin-Madison, a master’s degree in clinical psychology from University of Wisconsin-Superior, and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from University of Wisconsin-Superior.

 About National HealthCare Corporation

NHC affiliates operate for themselves and third parties 75 skilled nursing facilities with 9,473 beds. NHC affiliates also operate 24 assisted living communities, five independent living communities, one behavioral health hospital, 34 homecare agencies, and 28 hospice agencies. NHC’s other services include Alzheimer’s and memory care units, pharmacy services, a rehabilitation services company, and providing management and accounting services to third party post-acute operators. For more information, visit

NHC is proud to announce a new collaborative agreement with Motlow State Community College in Lynchburg, Tennessee. This agreement will add an additional nursing instructor and approximately ten more nursing student slots for the LPN to RN program at Motlow.   

“There is a national shortage of qualified nurses. This affects all healthcare settings, including NHC,’ said Melodie McCarver, recruiting director for NHC.  

Dr. Amy Holder, dean of Nursing and Allied Health for Motlow, added, “The agreement helps provide additional opportunities for LPNs to bridge to an RN.” 

With the increased demand for registered nurses, Motlow and NHC determined a need to provide a pathway for educating LPNs to become RNs within three to five years.  

“Through the Tennessee Foundation for Geriatric Education, NHC can assist with that funding,” explained McCarver. “It allows us to be part of the solution to the existing nursing shortage. In addition, adding an instructor will allow Motlow to increase the number of students admitted to the program and therefore, increase the number of nurses in the workforce available for hire by NHC and other health care providers.” 

“It allows us to train more RNs to fill open nursing positions,” explained Holder.  

The Nursing program offers a three-semester transition program for LPNs seeking to become Registered Nurses. Clinical activities are provided in campus classrooms, area hospitals, extended care facilities, and other health and community agencies. The majority of the clinical experiences are located within the College’s 11-county service area.  

Motlow’s nursing employment rate is 98 percent. In addition, the College offers a variety of scholarships for nursing students. These can be applied for within a single scholarship application system that allows students to apply for all nursing scholarships at one time. For more information, check out the nursing program on Motlow’s website 

Prospective college students and undecided college majors are encouraged to explore professional careers that are in high demand. Geriatric nursing is a high-demand field. Motlow advisors can help prospective students develop a college plan for entering this or any other high-demand field. 

 Motlow State fall classes begin August 23. Apply today to For more information regarding reduced costs for students, email or call 800-654-4877.