The term “activist” is one that Danielle Lewis would not use to describe herself, but that is exactly what she is. I don’t mean it in the stereotypical sense, the modern pejorative take on the word. When I say she is an activist what I hope to impart is that she sees the world for what it is and the potential that is unfulfilled, and she actively tries to narrow the void.
Danielle started life in Medicine Hat and followed her father, a gifted musician and helicopter pilot, and mother, a teacher, to Canada’s west coast where after an unorthodox and rich childhood she made her own way to the University of Victoria to study fine arts, language and economics. After some adventures in the workforce which included stints as a filmmaker in Whistler, and finance director in Cape Dorset Nunavut she eventually made her way here to Edmonton to study Medicine at the U of A.
It is on this leg of her journey that I have had the privilege to get to know Danielle. This single mom is not only an inspiration to her peers; she is also a shining star in the community through her engagement and outreach. When not busy studying or being a mommy, Danielle has been employing her natural talents working on, and promoting, a video project to increase awareness and acceptance of midwifery and alternative birthing practices to help create a bridge between the community and the Faculty of Medicine. She is a leader, a motivator, and an inspiration for more reasons than I can elucidate here. We are fortunate to have her here, as a university, as a community, and as a species.