Dana Ellis

Dana worked West Tennessee health fairs in the summers of 1973 and 1974 while a student in the School of Nursing at Vanderbilt. She served as co-director of the Student Health Coalition alongside George Smith who was in medical school at Meharry Medical College, a historically Black medical school. Together they provided clinical leadership for the several SHC fairs conducted in West Tennessee in predominately Black rural communities.

Over time, a network of clinics came together in those communities, many of which still operate to this day.

After retiring from her career in nursing administration at the University of Alabama Hospital at Birmingham, Dana has become a local and tireless leader in Moms Demand Action for gun control, voter registration drives, and the Poor People’s Campaign.

Related Content:

SHC goes to West Tennessee in 1973

Dana Ellis discusses how she got involved and her experience with the first Student Health Coalition (SHC) cohort to visit communities in West Tennessee in 1973. Continued

Dana Ellis on her early experience as a Nurse Practitioner


Dana Ellis: Personal reflections

In this video clip, Dana Ellis reflects on her personal experiences as a student nurse working with community leaders in rural West Tennessee back in the early 1970s and how that work affected her career and her life. Continued