At the American Nurses Association Convention in 1971, several delegates met and expressed concerns about the status of health care to Blacks in America. From this meeting grew an organization of national prominence and recognition known as the National Black Nurses Association (NBNA).
The San Diego Black Nurses Association (SDBNA), one of over ninety chapters, was organized in 1976 by six forward thinking nurses: Eula May Banks, Maudesta George, Lottie Harris, Jewel Kelley, Dorothy Palmer Phillips and Betty Reliford. Lottie Harris was the SDBNA’s first president.
For the past 40 years SDBNA has kept its commitment to its primary objectives:
- Awarding scholarships annually to students enrolled in an accredited nursing program;
- Recruiting Blacks into nursing and retaining them for future health care providers;
- Providing a support system to nursing students through monitoring and tutoring;
- Offering continuing education classes and workshops; and
- Participating in community activities and networking with strategic organizations who speak out on health-related issues, especially those affecting African Americans.
To accomplish its goals, SDBNA has been provided with excellent leadership by the following presidents:
- Lottie Harris (1976-1978), (1990-1992)
- Dr. Patricia Harvard (1978-1980)
- Barbara Odom (1980-1982)
- Yvonne Hutchinson* (1982-1984, 1988-1990)
- Dorothy Munns (1984-1986), (2007-2010)
- Eula May Banks* (1986-1987)
- Louise Grant *(1987-1988)
- Beverly Eugene Angeletta* (1992-1995)
- Diane Audrey-Kendall (1995-1996)
- Ruth Johnson *(1996-1999)
- Mattie Allen (2000-2002)
- Syvera Hardy (2003-2006)
- Sharon Smith (2011 – 2014)
- Ethel Weekly-Avant (2015- present)
Participating in community activities and networking with strategic organizations who work on health-related issues, especially those affecting African Americans and other underserved members of the community.
SDBNA will continue to strive for excellence in personal and professional growth; work diligently to influence change relative to the health care needs of all; remain committed to meeting and improving the health care needs of the community.