October 1, 2008

Holderby Honored With Rodriguez-Trias Award

By Anonymous

LISA RENEE Holderby, executive director of the Massachusetts Association of Community Health Workers, will be honored with the 2008 Helen Rodriguez-Trias Social Justice Award at the 136th APHA Annual Meeting in San Diego. The award, first given in 2005, honors public health workers who have worked toward social justice for under-served and disadvantaged populations.

Holderby has nearly 20 years of experience as a community health worker and has shown "courageous and innovative leadership in statewide as well as national efforts to improve the health of under- served communities through promoting the unique, essential and often under-recognized contributions of community health workers," wrote APHA member Gail Hirsch, MEd, coordinator of Workforce Initiatives for the Massachusetts Department of Public Health's Division of Primary Care and Health Access, in a letter nominating Holderby for the award.

"Lisa Renee has successfully been able to harness the deep passion of community health workers to serving their communities toward a larger vision of improved public health through increasing access and eliminating health disparities," Hirsch wrote.

Holderby is a founding leader of the Massachusetts Association of Community Health Workers, nurturing the organization from "its extremely humble beginnings to its current state as a well- recognized and valued policy advocate for improving the health of Massachusetts communities," Hirsch wrote. She credits Holderby for contributing to the inclusion of community health workers in Massachusetts' landmark 2006 health care reform legislation.

At APHA, Holderby has served as a governing councilor and Community Health Worker Special Primary Interest Group Executive Committee member. She is a founding member of the American Association of Community Health Workers. She is a member of the Amigos en Salud National Advisory Board, a practicum advisor for the Massachusetts Institute of Community Health Leadership and a co- chair of the National Community Health Worker Workforce Study's Technical Advisory Group. She also serves as chair of the Community Health Workers Initiative of Boston's Policy Committee.

Copyright American Public Health Association Sep 2008

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