About Our Providers
Dennis Basila, MD
Dr. Basila has been committed to helping others most of his lifetime. He has been helping out and serving in his community since junior high school, from volunteering at charity events, food pantries and nursing homes. His interest in science and the person as a continually developing unique individual and how they are part of the community as a whole has always been part of his life. He grew up in Cohoes, NY – the Upstate region of NY just outside of Albany. He was the youngest of 4 siblings. He played soccer, baseball and basketball in his youth. He went to the University of Notre Dame as a Notre Dame Scholar for undergraduate studies. He attended St. George’s University School of Medicine and went on to complete his residency training at the Children’s Hospital of Albany Medical Center. He stayed on and was Chief Resident of Pediatrics and an attending for an additional year. Dr. Basila than began a fellowship program in Pediatric Critical Care at Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville. He decided to leave the program early as he enjoyed his interactions with children who needed the whole spectrum of care. He worked as a general pediatrician in Nashville before accepting a position as an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Albany Medical College and working as a Pediatric Hospitalist at the Children’s Hospital. He also provided sedation services for children undergoing procedures as well as working at a long term care facility for children with complex medical needs. He worked with medical students and residents, teaching and advising them. For 5 years, Dr. Basila was the Pediatric Residency director directly overseeing the education and training of pediatric residents and jointly overseeing the internal medicine-pediatric residents, family practice residents and emergency medicine residents. He served on regional and national committees for setting standards and sharing best practices for pediatric education and training. Dr. Basila is proud of the many physicians he has advised and trained, some of whom have gone on to be national experts recognized in their fields.
Dr. Basila felt the calling to work with his own patients more continually as they grow and develop and left academics to work in General Pediatrics. He moved to Scottsboro, AL in 2018 and began working in the community and at Highlands Medical Center as a general pediatrician. He joined Highlands directly with Dr. Freeman in 2023 and opened Highlands Pediatrics with the intent to help further develop and support the children of Northeast Alabama and develop more services for children in the growing community.
Dr. Basila lives in Scottsboro and is married with three very active sons, 2 dogs and 5 cats. When not working, he can usually be found at youth sporting events and school activities.
Benjamin Freeman, MD
Dr. Benjamin Freeman has a lifelong dedication to public service. He comes to Highlands Pediatrics after completion of 29 years in the U.S. Army, both in Enlisted and Commissioned Officer occupations. He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, with degrees in Biology and International Studies. He received his MD from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland, and completed his Pediatrics Residency Training at Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Upon completion of training, he was stationed at Landstuhl Army Medical Center in Germany, where he served as Chief of Inpatient Pediatrics and subsequently as Chief of Pediatrics, followed by 8 years at Fort Stewart, Georgia, where he retired from Active Duty Army. He completed two deployments to Afghanistan as a General Medical Officer.
Dr. Freeman’s passions in Pediatrics include newborn medicine, asthma and allergies, diabetes and ADHD. He is proud to be a part of the medical team at Highlands, providing Pediatric medical care to all children in our community.
Dr. Freeman lives in Scottsboro with his wife, Stacie. They have 4 children. His oldest son is a teacher in Savannah, Ga and married. They recently had a baby girl. His other two sons are premed students at UA. His youngest child is a student at Scottsboro High School.
Dakota Clark, CRNP
Dakota Clark, CRNP, is a nurse practitioner at Highlands Medical Center in Scottsboro, AL, where she has been working as an RN since 2019. After graduating from Pisgah High School in 2014, she was accepted to Northeast Alabama Community College. In 2016, she graduated with an associate’s degree in nursing. Clark then began working on the Women’s and Children’s Unit at Dekalb Regional Medical Center. She worked two years in labor and delivery, newborn nursery, postpartum, and pediatrics.
In 2019, Clark went to Chamberlain University and completed her bachelors of nursing, followed by her masters of nursing, and in 2022, her family nurse practitioner degree. As Clark was pursuing her degrees, she was dedicated to caring for mothers and babies at Highlands Women’s Services Center on the third floor of Highlands Medical Center.
She and her husband, Dylan, welcomed their first daughter, Delilah, in February 2023. After returning to work at Highlands Women’s Services Center, she accepted a part-time position at Highlands Pediatrics. Clark is grateful to be in a position where she can continue providing care to mothers in the Scottsboro community by providing continued care for their babies as a nurse practitioner. She loves caring for the women and children in this community.