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Campus Organ Donation Drive Honors Student, Nets 13 New Donors

palacios standing behind info table
Ingrid Palacios of New England Donor Services volunteered at an organ donation drive on the Emerson campus earlier this month. The drive was held in memory of Dan Hollis ’22, who died earlier this semester. Photo/Zenebou Sylla ’22

By Zenebou Sylla ‘22

Daniel Hollis ’22, who died earlier this semester after suffering a brain injury, saved three lives that terrible October day. His kidney, liver, and heart valves were donated to people who desperately needed transplants.

To honor his memory and further his legacy, the Emerson community was invited to participate in an organ donor drive on December 6, prior to a memorial service for Hollis in the Bill Bordy Theater.

“It was our intent to honor Daniel with the initial drive,” said Associate Athletic Director Belinda “Boe” Pearman. Hollis was an athlete, playing on the lacrosse team. “What a wonderful gift [he gave]. It also was a way to feel like we were taking a horrible situation and turning it into a healing gift.”

Pearman reached out to New England Donor Services, the organization that worked with Hollis’s family.  The drive was held at four locations on campus: 172 Tremont, Little Building, Piano Row, and the Dining Center. 

Ingrid Palacios, community and family services coordinator at New England Donor Services, said about 13 people signed up to be organ donors on the day of Hollis’s memorial, and thought the drive had an overall positive effect on the community.

“I’ve seen the students being very receptive … and several people registered [Dec. 6], which is awesome,” Palacios said. “I think everyone wants to honor and wants to emulate and follow the role model that [Hollis] was … [s]o I hope we do these activities more here on campus,” she said.

Andy Bindelglass, a student volunteer from Northeastern University, came out to help and show his support for the Emerson community. 

“I think Emerson did a pretty good job of getting the word out. It’s always good to be able to rally around and support a good cause, even from such a tough situation… but we definitely got to talk to students there and some staff members who walked through, too. They were very supportive of the cause so that was great,” he said.

Pearman said she believes Emerson can expect more events like the organ donor drive in the future.

“We have adopted the Gift of Life as our org[anization] long term,” Pearman said. “Our plan is to have a donor drive no less than once a year, but [we’re hoping] for once a semester.”

To learn more about organ and tissue donation and transplantation, visit New England Donor Services. To register to become an organ donor, visit

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