561 Fleming Street, Hendersonville, NC 28739
(828) 233-2700

Ellises Support Community with Cancer Center Donation

David and Deanna Ellis are both from a small town in Tennessee that creates a unique perspective on the impact that a dedicated group of people can have on the delivery of critical health care within their community.

After David finished medical school at Tulane, the couple moved to Charleston for David’s residency at MUSC. When they began to look at places to live, they knew they wanted to be somewhere with a change of seasons – after spending so many years in the hot weather, they were ready to have fall, winter and spring! When David came to Hendersonville and toured the area with Dr. Marion Ross, he fell in love with it immediately. They knew they wanted to settle in a smaller town and live in a place where they could be active contributors to their community. They had two small children at the time, and wanted a safe place for them to grow up.

David was the “young” doctor at Hendersonville OBGYN at the time, with lots of fresh ideas of how to practice Obstetrics. But he also learned many things from Dr. Ross during his tenure there. In 1987, their practice was the only practice at Pardee Hospital offering obstetrics. David was instrumental in bringing Labor Delivery Recovery Post-partum (LDRP) rooms to Pardee Hospital, insisting that this was best practice for Obstetrics and more importantly for the mother and baby. This was a radical change and great accomplishment, as there were no other hospitals in the area with LDRP rooms.

After 11 years with Hendersonville OB/GYN, David decided to go out on his own. He has been at the current practice since then, transitioning to a Pardee-owned practice in August 2015, and then becoming the Chief Medical Officer at Pardee Hospital in that same year. Pardee Hospital has always been David’s choice of hospital in which to work. He recognized the quality of the other physicians and nurses from the very beginning, and had no desire to work at any other place.

David and Deanna have been supporters of Pardee since moving to Hendersonville. David has been active on various committees, and Deanna was active in the medical society auxiliary until it disbanded. Since then, she has found a home volunteering at the Pardee Hospital Foundation, assisting with events and now serving as a Board member. The couple has always considered it a privilege to be able to actively support Pardee and the Foundation.

When the Foundation began its capital campaign to fund the Cancer Center, the Ellises immediately felt drawn to contribute in a substantial way towards the center. While they have not been touched by cancer in a personal way, they have experienced it with friends and patients who have.

They heard firsthand how challenging it was for patients to go from one place to another, and keep up with where they were supposed to be for the different treatments. When they learned that a new facility would be built and would offer everything in one place, they were drawn to that.

I love the slogan “Right here, Right now,” said Deanna. “We are so fortunate to have this Cancer Center right here in our community, with highly qualified doctors and nurses taking care of our patients and friends. They no longer have to wonder where they need to go or who they need to see. Most services will be offered right here. This is such a blessing and we want to be part of it!”

The couple feels it is important to show support for the community where they live. Supporting the Cancer Center is their way of saying just how much they value this community and want to see it continue to flourish. The Ellises dedicated a room in the new center to their children in the hopes that they never have to use it, but to show what giving means. “You would be hard pressed to find a community of our size with a 200-bed hospital that has the high quality of care and providers that Pardee does,” said Deanna Ellis.

Andrew Schmidt

Andrew Schmidt joined Pardee Hospital Foundation in November 2023 as a Donor Engagement Officer. Andrew began his career in fundraising at his alma mater, Sewanee: The University of the South, as an assistant director in charge of reunions and volunteers, working on milestone giving campaigns as well as alumni engagement and stewardship events. Andrew holds a BA in Philosophy from Sewanee and recently earned a MA in Applied Arts & Sciences from the Liberal and Interdisciplinary Studies program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Andrew previously served the Henderson Country community as an Advancement Analyst at nearby Kanuga Conference Center, where he was responsible for donor database administration, prospect research, and raising funds in support of a $15M capital campaign centered on a comprehensive renovation of the then-47-year-old Kanuga Lake Inn. Andrew looks forward to helping advance the mission of UNC Health and Pardee Hospital Foundation across the Western North Carolina region, and particularly in Transylvania County. When he’s not out and about visiting with donors, you can usually find Andrew scampering around DuPont and Pisgah with his wife, Sara and preschool-age son, Arthur.