Submitted photo Anitra Ellis

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CHARLESTON - Forty nurses who are empowering their communities, advancing nursing and leading change are being recognized with the Emerging Nurse Leader Award by the West Virginia Future of Nursing Action Coalition as part of its 40 under 40 leadership campaign.

One of the awardees, Anitra Ellis, DNP, MSN, RN, FNP-C, from Chapmanville, is a 31-year-old assistant professor of nursing at University of Charleston School of Nursing and adult and pediatric nurse practitioner at Coalfield Health Center.

"Serve others when you have the opportunity, even if no one sees it," Ellis said. "We never know who is watching us, and we are inspiring the next generation of nurses who will have to lead one day."

The 40 selected nurses will be honored at the annual recognition gala at the Embassy Suites in Charleston on Sept. 28. They will be mentored throughout the next year.

"Our awardees are the shining stars of our next generation of nursing leaders," said Aila Accad, MSN, RN, executive director of Future of Nursing WV. "We are proud to recognize their accomplishments and mentor them as they continue on their leadership journey to improve the culture of health in West Virginia."