I actually just stumbled over the posting on my state job listing site. I didn't know anyone or have any special connections. I did have an odd set of skills (extensive public speaking background, occupational health, industrial hygiene, etc) that made me a good candidate. I also had a pre-RN career in judicial/legal work which was a plus.
When you have a job with such scope, you have to figure out what you can do and what you need others to do. Public speaking is easy for me so I do about 40-50 events a year. However, when I was getting innundated with requests re: dementia and driving, I trained volunteers from the Alzheimer's Association how to do my speech and sent them out to do what I couldn't.
I always say, never give up on nursing, there is an odd job for everyone! I love my position and it came at a time I was no longer able to physically hack hospital nursing. It was a small paycut from other nursing jobs
. However, with no holidays, weekends, nights or on-call to work and with a great pension and 4 weeks of annual vacation, I'm a happy camper.