Pinnacle Lecture Series

Each semester, the Connell School brings a widely recognized nurse leader to Boston College to speak on an issue at the forefront of health care. Pinnacle lectures are open to all CSON students, staff, faculty, alumni, and preceptors and practitioners and scholars unaffiliated with Boston College are welcome.

A Call to Action: Global Nurses as Champions for Health Equity

Monday, April 1, 2019

5:00 p.m.
Yawkey Center, Murray Room


Sheila Davis


Chief of Clinical Operations and
Chief Nursing Officer

Partners in Health


Sheila Davis

Sheila Davis will talk about her journey to becoming a global nurse—from developing malnutrition programs in South Africa to managing Ebola response in Sierra Leone and Liberia—and the lessons she’s learned for championing global health equity via a social justice framework.

A reception will follow the presentation.

Lecture attendees will receive 1.2 contact hours for nursing continuing education. These may be used for RN license renewal in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and in other states where they are accepted.


About the speaker

Sheila Davis was chief of Ebola response at Partners in Health from September 2014 to May 2016, leading emergency response for and transition to health system strengthening in Sierra Leone and Liberia. As chief of Clinical Operations and Nursing, she oversees nursing, supply chain, safety and security, medical informatics, laboratory, pharmacy, infrastructure, biomed, and quality of care. A nursing leader in the field of HIV/AIDS since its emergence in the mid-1980s, Davis served on the national board of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care. She entered the global health arena in 1999, working in a number of countries in response to the global HIV pandemic. She cofounded a small NGO that worked in South Africa and Boston from 2004–10 on health projects, including a rural village nurse clinic.

As an Adult Nurse Practitioner at the Massachusetts General Hospital Infectious Diseases outpatient practice for more than 15 years, Davis cared for patients with HIV/AIDS and other types of infectious diseases. She was inducted as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nursing in 2008 and in the inaugural class of Carl Wilkens Fellows in 2009, working on anti-genocide global efforts as part of the Genocide Intervention Network. She completed the RWJ Executive Nurse Fellowship as part of the 2012–15 cohort.

Past Pinnacle Lecture Speakers

Click on the links below to view past lectures

Lorna Finnegan
President, National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties

Executive Associate Dean, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing
Fall 2018

Susan Orsega
Chief Nurse Officer, United States Public Health Service
Spring 2018

Marla Weston
Chief Executive Officer, American Nurses Association Enterprise
Fall 2017

Patricia Flatley Brennan
Director, National Library of Medicine
Spring 2017

Loretta Sweet Jemmott
Vice President for Health and Health Equity and
Professor, College of Nursing and Health Professions,
Drexel University

Fall 2016

Kathleen Rice Simpson
Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist
Editor in Chief, 
MCN: The American Journal of Maternal Child Nursing
Spring 2015

Margaret Grey
Annie W. Goodrich Professor, Yale School of Nursing
Fall 2015

Antonia M. Villarruel
Margaret Bond Simon Dean of Nursing, University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
Spring 2015

Maureen E. Gormley ’85
Chief Operating Officer, National Institutes of Health Clinical Center
Fall 2014









Courtney H. Lyder
Dean and Professor, UCLA School of Nursing
Assistant Director, UCLA Health System
Executive Director, UCLA Health System Patient Safety Institute

Spring 2014

Maureen P. McCausland ’72, M.S. ’77
Senior Vice President and System Chief Nursing Officer, MedStar Health
Fall 2013

Lee Woodruff
Best-selling author, CBS This Morning show contributor
Co-founder, Bob Woodruff Foundation

Spring 2013

Angela Barron McBride
Distinguished Professor and University Dean Emerita, Indiana University School of Nursing
Fall 2012

Karen Daley, M.S. '04, Ph.D. '10
President, American Nurses Association
Spring 2012

Karen H. Morin
President of the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International
Fall 2011

Linda Burnes Bolton
Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Spring 2011

Terry Fulmer, M.S. '77, Ph.D. '83 
Dean, New York University College of Nursing
Fall 2010