With 20 years working as a team, Versant has maintained its position as the leader in competency-based assessment and tracking. Today, the leadership team is formed by a diverse group of individuals from across the country with unique expertise in healthcare, aeronautics, software engineering, business development, and customer support. Together, the Versant team is working to fundamentally transform healthcare by helping health systems increase workforce performance. To do this, they work as a team to ensure clients achieve their operational and financial goals.

Larissa A. Africa, MBA, RN, FAAN

After beginning her career as a Registered Nurse, Larissa has spent almost two decades implementing, managing, and leading strategies to develop nursing organizations. Her efforts have been focused on the development of a competency-based system that is transforming healthcare across the continuum of care.

A graduate of the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) RN Residency pilot group, Larissa joined the CHLA RN Residency team as the curriculum coordinator before becoming the Residency manager. During this time, she was instrumental in transitioning the Residency from a department-based program into its current form, the Versant New Graduate Nurse Residency™.

Larissa holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Mount St. Mary’s College in Los Angeles, CA, and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration with a focus on Health Care Management from University of Phoenix. She is an expert on the topic of transition to practice for the nursing workforce, as an author of numerous highly recognized publications and as a spokesperson at both national and international conferences.

Michael L. Carman, JD, MBA, AB, FACHE

After more than 35 years as an executive and advisor in the aerospace, health care, pharmaceutical, automation, and process industries, Mike left the corporate world behind to focus on assisting non-profit organizations. After crossing paths with Versant® through his work at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA), he would go on to write the original business plan that provided the pathway to making the CHLA internal residency program available to hospitals nationwide. Serving as an advisor to CHLA’s leadership team on the formation of Versant Advantage, Inc., he also served as its pro bono chairman for the first four years before forming Versant Holdings, LLC to continue the Versant mission of enhancing patient safety through developing and sustaining professional nursing organizations.

Mike previously held roles as President of Invensys Process Systems, and as Vice President and General Manager of several AlliedSignal and Honeywell Subsidiaries, including Avionics and Turbocharging Systems.

Mike is a graduate of Cornell Law School, the Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth College, and Bowdoin College.

Patricia (Patty) N. Deasy, MSN, RN, FNP

After more than 35 years as a Registered Nurse, Patty has spent the last 10 years consulting, implementing, and strategizing with nursing organizations to improve patient and organizational outcomes. Her efforts have been focused on transforming nursing organizations by utilizing a competency-based approach to workforce development.

Prior to joining Versant®, Patty held various positions in nursing clinical practice, nursing education, program development and nursing administration in a variety of healthcare settings spanning the continuum of care. During her time at Northridge Hospital Medical Center, Patty was involved in the implementation of the Versant New Graduate Nurse Residency™. Witnessing the organization’s transformation led her to Versant and a career change. In her role as Vice President Patty continues to pursue organizational development and sustainability through her work developing nursing organizations.

Patty holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Salve Regina University, and a Master of Science in Nursing as a Family Nurse Practitioner from University of Rhode Island. She has presented at numerous national conferences focusing on competency-based transition to practice programs for nursing.

Martha Grubaugh

Martha Grubaugh PhD, RN, NE-BC

Joining Versant in 2021, Martha is a doctoral prepared nurse leader passionate about practice environments and improving healthcare system outcomes.

Martha has a BSN from the University of Pennsylvania, MSN in Nursing Administration and Health Care Services from the University of Michigan Ann Arbor, and a PhD in Health Care Systems from the University of Colorado. Her dissertation was Nurse Manager Practice Environments and the Relationship with Nurse Manager Outcomes.

In her former role of Vice President/Associate Chief Nursing Officer for Critical Care Services and Interim Director of Patient Care Services at Children’s Hospital Colorado, Martha was responsible for directing and evaluating nursing functions and implementing and maintaining policies, programs, and patient care services. Martha also holds an academic position of assistant professor at the University of Colorado College of Nursing.