Sandra Lindsay, DHSc, MBA, MSN, RN, CCRN-K, NE-BC
Vice President of Public Health Advocacy, Northwell Health, Queens, New York
Dr. Lindsay has more than 28 years of nursing experience, most of which have been in critical care. On December 14, 2020, she became the first person in the United States to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Raised in Jamaica by their grandparents, Dr. Lindsay and her siblings moved to the United States in 1986 to pursue her dream of becoming a registered nurse. Dr. Lindsay graduated from Borough of Manhattan Community College as valedictorian of her nursing program and joined Northwell Health's Lenox Hill Hospital in 1994. There, she worked as a clinical nurse in various critical care units before being offered leadership roles.
Dr. Lindsay's educational accomplishments include a Baccalaureate degree in nursing from St. Joseph's College and a Master of Science in Nursing from Herbert Lehman College, where she was the 2022 commencement speaker. She also earned a Master of Business Administration from Hofstra University and, in May 2021, completed a Doctor of Health Sciences degree with a concentration in global health and leadership and organizational behavior from A. T. Still University. Dr. Lindsay recently published her first leadership research study in Nursing Management titled, “Authentic Leadership: Does It Relate to Job Satisfaction and Engagement?”
Since becoming recognized as the first person to be vaccinated against COVID-19, she has become a vocal advocate in support of vaccinations, dispelling misinformation, and a supporter of medical research and global equity. She has been recognized by President Joseph Biden at the White House, has met with the President of the United Nations and the Prime Minister of Jamaica, and served as Grand Marshall in New York’s Hometown Heroes Parade. On July 7th, 2022, Dr. Lindsay was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor, by President Joe Biden during a special ceremony at the White House among 16 other outstanding individuals. On August 6th, 2022, His Excellency, The Governor General of Jamaica, conferred the honor of The Order of Distinction in The Rank of Commander (CD) on Dr. Lindsay for her contribution to public health and the campaign against COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy.
Several organizations have recognized Dr. Lindsay for her work. The Caribbean Heritage Organization awarded her with the 2021 Robert Nesta Marley Humanitarian Award, the Jamaican Cultural Alliance Trailblazer Award. Dr. Lindsay was honored in February 2022 at the Greater New York Chamber of Commerce’s Black History Legends Breakfast and the Little Flower Children and Family Services of New York has recognized her as a Corporate Ambassador of Hope. She was a panelist at the 2022 Aspen Ideas Festival, where thought leaders from around the globe discuss issues that shape the world and challenges of our times.
Dr. Lindsay was promoted to Northwell’s Vice President of Public Health Advocacy in November 2022. In this role, she will serve as Northwell’s ambassador to raise health locally, nationally, and globally. She will lead the health system in expanding knowledge of issues that affect community health, public policy, and other aspects of health care.
When Dr. Lindsay is not engaging in lifelong learning or working, she enjoys adventurous traveling, visiting family and friends in her homeland, Jamaica, reading leadership books and articles, and gardening.