Dr. Lewis Wall
Dr. Lewis Wall
President of the Board
Dr. Lewis Wall has a longstanding interest in the health of women in sub-Saharan Africa and has carried out clinical, research, and teaching activities in Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ghana, Liberia, Niger, Uganda, and Ethiopia.
In 2014, he spent eight months as a Fulbright Scholar in Ethiopia at the College of Health Sciences, Mekelle University, working to improve residency education in obstetrics and gynecology. At the medical school commencement in October 2014, he was awarded the University Gold Medal by President Kindeya Gebrehiwot for meritorious service to medical education. Lewis has published more than 100 articles and book chapters on gynecologic subjects including a book on childbirth trauma and obstetric fistulas in the developing world.
During his time in Mekelle, he and his wife Helen became familiar with the work and story of Freweini Mebrahtu, founder of Mariam Seba Sanitary Pad Factory. The challenge of menstrual hygiene in Ethiopia stood out as a problem that can be solved even if it involves complexities of ethnographic and anthropological research and education. He worked with colleagues at Mekelle University and Freweini at Mariam Seba to work out a partnership, and Dignity Period was born. Hear more of the story from Lewis himself.
Lewis graduated from the University of Kansas and subsequently attended Oxford University in England as a Rhodes Scholar, where he studied social anthropology. A distinguished clinician and academic researcher, he has held faculty positions at Duke University, Emory University, the Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans, the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (UCLA), and Washington University in St. Louis. He is board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology and the sub-specialty of female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery (urogynecology). In 2015, Lewis was named the inaugural Selina Okin Kim Conner Professor of Arts and Sciences in the Department of Anthropology at Washington University after a productive career as Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology in the School of Medicine.
Lewis has served on the boards of numerous medical and charitable organizations and is pleased to serve as the board president of Dignity Period. He and his wife Helen have two sons and live happily in St. Louis with their dog, Sadie. Lewis and Helen are members of Peace United Church of Christ in Webster Groves, MO.