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Community Service Award

Dr. David Nichols '70

Dr. David Nichols '70 is an example of the power of one individual to make a lasting and material difference in the lives of others. For more than 30 years, he's made weekly helicopter trips to Tangier, a town located on a remote island in the Chesapeake Bay, to provide medical treatment to the youngest and oldest members of the community.

Nichols was in his residency at the Medical College of Virginia when he fell in love with the people in the small fishing community. After years spent in a slowly deteriorating clinic on Tangier, Nichols was able to raise funds for the construction of a new healthcare facility for the residents of the island. The Dr. David B. Nichols Clinic opened in September 2010, named in honor of the man who has so transformed the island and its people.

Nichols received his Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Hobart College in 1970 and went on to graduate from McGill University School of Medicine in Montreal, Canada, in 1976. In 1979, he began the White Stone Family Practice in White Stone, Va., where he resides with his family to this day. The practice has expanded over the years, and Nichols has remained steadfast in his dedication to his patients and to his community.

In 2006, Nichols was named Country Doctor of the Year, an honor bestowed on those who exemplify the spirit, skill and dedication of America's rural practitioners. Nichols has also been featured on NPR and in dozens of newspapers nationally. He was named ABC Person of the Week in January 2007 and featured him on a NBC's Nightly News with Brian Williams called "Making a Difference." He has been recognized by Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell for his efforts on Tangier.