Erica A. Russell received her B.A. in Speech Communications and Theatre (2005) and M.A.Ed. in Exercise Science (2007) from Tennessee State University. She currently works with the United Way of the National Capital Area (Washington, DC) as a Community Impact Senior Manager. Some of her key areas of focus are to decrease the presence of childhood obesity and to remove barriers to healthy eating and active living. Erica also works as an Adjunct Instructor in the Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance Department at Northern Virginia Community College (Alexandria, VA). Over the years she has assisted in the expansion of the college's dance program. She serves on the Dance Place, center of dance activity, Board of Directors (Washington, DC). Erica is a 2017 Alexandria Chamber of Commerce 40 Under 40 award recipient.
Through her first love and passion for ballet and dance she gained a deep appreciation of all the health and wellness benefits that come along with the fine art. This is what ultimately sparked her interest in childhood obesity prevention and health disparities particularly related to physical activity and diet. Professionally and personally, she is committed to promoting physical activity and nutrition as a means to disease prevention for optimal quality of life; especially for children, seniors and persons with varied abilities. She lives by Maya Angelou’s quote, “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor and some style.”