Keynote Speaker: Ashley Ritter

Title: Those Nerdy Girls: Translating Science via Social Media during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Friday, October 15, 2021 from 10:00-11:00 a.m. CT


Dear Pandemic is an interdisciplinary team of all-woman researchers and clinicians with diverse expertise including nursing, mental health, demography, health policy, and epidemiology. Since March 2020, they have written and disseminated over 1,000 short essays rooted in facts to over 120,000 followers on multiple social media outlets. Dr. Ashley Z. Ritter, the CEO of Dear Pandemic, will discuss how this crisis communication campaign began and Dear Pandemic’s approach to delivering timely, accurate, and trusted COVID-19 information to consumers via social media.


Ashley Z. Ritter, APRN, Ph.D. is a geriatric nurse practitioner and the Chief Executive Officer of Dear Pandemic. She is also an Embedded Nurse Scientist and the Director of Clinical Care Research at NewCourtland, a provider of housing, health, and care management services in Philadelphia, PA. She recently completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the National Clinician Scholars Program at the University of Pennsylvania. She integrates her clinical knowledge, health policy training, and research skills to build better systems of care to meet post-hospital needs with the goal of sustained wellness. Her recent work examines the use of nursing homes for care delivery to younger adults, individuals experiencing opioid use disorder, and during the Covid-19 pandemic. Her recent work is funded by the National Institute on Aging and the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 2018 and is a first-generation college graduate. She spends her free time outdoors with her three small children, singing poorly to an eclectic variety of music, and cooking.