Exhibit: Women Who Dared
BiographiesMultimediaBy CityAbout WWD Jewish Gender Activism
What She Said
  Marla Oros
  Community Health Care Activist
  Baltimore WWD Event 2002
  Born in 1963
  Established health and education philanthropic organizations for the benefit of children and adults
Biography  up to top

Marla Oros was born and brought up in Randallstown, Maryland. Trained as a nurse and nurse administrator, at just 39, Oros currently serves as Associate Dean for Clinical Practice and Services at the University of Maryland, School of Nursing. In this capacity, she oversees several programs including four full service mobile health clinics know as "Wellmobiles", a nurse managed primary care community facility ("Open Gates"), a pediatric ambulatory center, 15 school based health centers, the Healthy Child Care Maryland Program and the Southwestern Family Support Center. Oros' work, both professional and voluntary, in the field of health care and educational access, has taken her into the poorest and most under-served areas of west and southwest Baltimore as well as across Maryland. Her work encompasses groups as diverse as children, low income families and prostitutes.

In 1993 she helped start a clinic called Open Gates Community Health Center with a grant from the Middendorf Foundation. This unit provides health services to under-served and uninsured Baltimoreans using nurses as primary health care practitioners with diagnostic and prescriptive powers. - Oros has helped champion this innovative idea. Now a thriving practice, the clinic will be housed in a new and larger facility in 2003 with the help of Oros' fundraising efforts and a personal contribution from Oros and her husband David Oros.

Marla Oros' commitment to healthcare access for all was the driving force behind the creation of Connect Maryland, a non-profit formed by Oros and her husband David. Supporting initiatives in health care across the state, particularly in places of social distress or geographic isolation, the organization has made a $600,000 annual donation to the Wellmobile initiative.

Seeing that the future of our cities and state lie in opportunities for children, Marla Oros co-founded and directs "Community Impact Baltimore," a youth development program for children and young adults from middle to high-school age and beyond. In 2000, this non-profit awarded college scholarships and plans to expand its activities in the coming years.

Oros was given community wide recognition by Baltimore Magazine for her numerous civic endeavors when she was named "Baltimorean of the Year" for 2001.

Marla Oros, with her husband David, has two children and resides in Owings Mills, Maryland.

What She Said  up to top
I really believe in rebuilding the community, giving back ...More  Audio available
I would say we were Reform to Conservative; not so observant, but with a very strong Jewish identity ...More 
My father worked primarily for the Department of Housing and Urban Development ...More 
My father grew up very religious. He went to the Talmudical Academy ...More 
I think that those values [of my parents' work], and particularly my mom's involvement ...More 
Dr. Claudia Smith, who was my community health instructor and really, I think, got me interested in community health ...More 
I haven't found it to be really an advantage or a disadvantage which is a good thing. ...More 
Well I have a wonderful husband who, despite the fact that he is a very busy ...More  Audio available
I think that [my children] are truly inspired and committed to [activism] ...More 
The Governor's Wellmobile program is a program that was started here ...More 
I have spent [much of] my career on the streets of primarily West Baltimore ...More 
Hopefully [there is an impact] in the communities [in which we work]. ...More  Audio available
Open Gates is near and dear to my heart. It's the first clinical practice ...More 
Community Impact is a new organization that my husband and I started ...More 
Y.A.N.A., stands for 'You Are Never Alone' ...More 
I've become recently involved with The Associated, and Jewish Family Service ...More 
[My activism is] really about promoting health care access ...More 
I think [the biggest challenge] is the resource support. It's really making sure that you don't take on too much ...More 
At our campus here at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, every year President Ramsey hosts a Community Service banquet ...More 
I think seeing the impact; seeing kids get care, seeing them go to school and be healthy ...More 
Multimedia  up to top
Photographs Photographs
Audio Clips Audio 
Answer - Work and Family (Marla Oros - husband)
Answer - Jewish values (Marla Oros - Tikkun Olam)
Answer - Impact on World (Marla Oros - community)
 up to top

How to Cite This Page
For a bibliography: Jewish Women's Archive. "JWA - Women Who Dared - Biography Marla Oros." <http://jwa.org/exhibits/wwd/jsp/bio.jsp?personID=pmoros>.

For a footnote: Jewish Women's Archive, "JWA - Women Who Dared - Biography Marla Oros," <http://jwa.org/exhibits/wwd/jsp/bio.jsp?personID=pmoros>.