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Health Equity

Celebrate Delaware's
Health Equity Champions.


Health Ambassadors have committed themselves to guiding Delaware’s families to good health education and practices. There are four different Health Ambassador programs, each striving to make a difference in the lives of Delaware’s families so all men, women, babies and communities have the opportunity to thrive.


When you do your part to educate and learn from your peers, you are taking the first steps to creating positive change in the world. When a woman learns more about and makes healthy choices, she shares those choices with her friends. Those friends tell friends, and eventually, a whole neighborhood is learning and making healthier choices. After a neighborhood, a town, then a state and finally a nation is learning and doing more. Finally, we will have happy, healthy and safe communities.

Our Delaware vision is to have a PPE Program at every College and University Statewide.

Learn more about the National PPE Program through the Office of Minority Health – click here.


To become a Peer Educator, review the pre-training checklist and bring it to the statewide training. The checklist includes links to all the information you need to access.

Check out this PowerPoint from the Office of Minority Health for PPE training and certificate requirements.


Open the pre-training checklist and follow the links to review content.

Pre-Training Checklist


PPE Toolkit

Award Winners

The Annual Dr. Kitty Esterly Health Equity Awards recognize individuals and organizations who go the extra mile to ensure that EVERYONE has the opportunity to achieve their health potential. The 2018 award nomination cycle will open soon.

Meet award winners from past years:



Delaware State Representative Melissa Minor-Brown

Delaware State Representative Melissa Minor-Brown, for her staunch advocacy for vulnerable women and children in Delaware — including addressing disparities for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC).


Planned Parenthood of Delaware

Planned Parenthood of Delaware, for their work to improve health outcomes across the state, including increasing access to prenatal care as well as reducing rates of unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.


Westside Family Healthcare

Westside Family Healthcare, for their work to provide integrated primary medical, oral, and behavioral health services to more than 28,000 Delawareans.



Delaware Community Legal Aid Society Inc.

Delaware Community Legal Aid Society Inc. for their work to provide free legal services to vulnerable populations to help them address the social determinants of their health.


Shane Darby

Shane Darby with Black Mothers in Power for her work to raise awareness, provide educational programming, and advocate for legislation to address racial inequity among mothers in her community.



Mom’s House of Wilmington

Mom’s House of Wilmington for their work to empower single parents to complete their education.


Cecilia Lopez

Cecilia Lopez of La Red Health Center for her hard work and dedication towards her patients.



The Society of St. Vincent de Paul

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul for their work responding to the needs of Delawareans including food, utility and rent / mortgage assistance, and medical transportation.


Jessica Baxter

Jessica Baxter, APRN of Nanticoke Health Services for her passionate care of patients and ability to include them in their care management.



Allen Conover of Rick VanStory Resource Center


Rick VanStory Resource Center



Westside Family Healthcare

Awarded for their leadership in community health and dedication to providing access to quality healthcare services.


Mona Liza Hamlin, MSN, RN, IBCLC of Nemours Children’s Health System and Stephanie Rogers, BS, BSN, RN of Christiana Care Health System

Awarded for their work to reduce disparities in breastfeeding in Delaware.



Mark-Anthony Umobi, MD

Dr. Umobi is an Obstetrics & Gynecology physician in Dover, Delaware who is steadfast in the delivery of competent quality care to all patients he serves. He has an ability to listen, and to inform his patients about their health and options pertaining to the delivery of care. Dr. Umobi has clinical practice experience spanning 17 years over 3 continents. He managed a 32-bed rural hospital in Nigeria as part of his National Service. He was the Administrative Chief Resident at Crozer-Chester Medical Center, and was a member of the hospital’s Educational Committee. He won the Philadelphia Obstetrical Society’s “residents’ bowl”, making him the best Ob/Gyn resident physician in the Philadelphia area, Delaware, and Southern New Jersey. Dr. Umobi is in private practice providing respectful care to women from different socioeconomic backgrounds.


Gail Smith, RN, BS, IBCLC, Lactation Program Coordinator

Gail is the driving force behind Bayhealth Hospital in Dover, Delaware achieving Baby Friendly status. As an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC), she is passionate about educating mothers on breastfeeding and infant nutrition. Gail seeks the best ways to educate her patients, considering their language preferences, their literacy levels, and the ways in which they learn best. She mentors and coaches staff to communicate effectively with their patients, so that patients can take care of themselves and their newborn. Additionally, Gail had Bayhealth’s TV online education materials translated into Spanish for Women’s and Children’s Services. Gail was also able to get Bayhealth’s Women Infants and Children (WIC) Peer Counselors into physician offices to help educate women who are unable to get to classes.


Health Equity & Quality Services at Highmark Inc.

Highmark’s responsibilities related to diversity, sustainability, disparities and corporate leadership are directly linked to their values. The organization takes tangible, visible, and actionable steps to serve a more diverse population, cultivate a diverse workforce, and incorporate environmental responsibility for an overall healthier community.

Highmark’s accomplishments include hosting a community dinner at which leaders representing minority communities shared health-related issues in their communities with a focus on reducing health disparities. Highmark also provided pedometers, bilingual heart-health cookbooks, and medicine bags to assist with Delaware’s obesity reduction program. The organization, furthermore offered free cultural competency training to the Division of Public Health (DPH) staff via E-Learning, providing continuing education credits for nurses, physicians, and non-clinical staff.



Nemours/Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children; The Office of Health Equity and Inclusion

The Nemours/Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children’s Office of Health Equity and Inclusion (OHEI) is a national leader in the elimination of pediatric health care disparities.

OHEI’s accomplishments include providing cultural competence training for all staff; developing an internship program for undergraduate students to teach health equity research principles; co-launching the international Pediatric Health Equity Consortium; presenting a leadership development series on cultivating a diverse workforce; developing an electronic medical record’s ‘cultural snapshot’ to enable providers to customize culturally-competent care; and developing bedside, culturally-competent care plans.

Nemours received Nursing Magnet status, and ‘exemplar’ status by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) for providing culturally-competent care.

OHEI will continue to develop programs to ensure the highest level of healthcare and respect for all of the pediatric patients, families, and communities served.


Dr. Deborah Ehrenthal

Dr. Deborah Ehrenthal is a tireless advocate for health equity in Delaware. She has led many research and intervention programs that improve the health of women, children, and families. She has served as the clinical lead of the Healthy Beginnings Program, designed to eliminate disparities in infant mortality among high risk populations. She co-chairs the Health Equity Council at Christiana Care, and led its efforts to improve services for women with limited English proficiency. She is also a founding member of the Wilmington Consortium, a group of over 20 agencies working to reduce infant mortality. Dr. Ehrenthal deeply and personally cares about Delaware’s families. She is an exemplary leader, and inspires her colleagues to be more courageous in championing health equity.



La Red Health Center

La Red Health Center provides bilingual, culturally appropriate primary and preventive care to Sussex County residents. Services are available to all regardless of gender, age, race, ethnic origin, religion, language, sexual orientation or ability to pay.

The staff is patient-centered and compassionate. No patient need is left unanswered – shoes are purchased, food provided, baby sweaters graciously donated. La Red connects with a wide range of community partners in the spirit of “it takes a village.”

La Red Health Center embodies the vision of health equity. Its 3 locations serve culturally diverse communities. Its clinical and professional staff is diverse. Many are bilingual. Its outreach and promotora program, and transportation services help ensure access for all.

La Red manages 26,000 patient visits each year, with a staff of 70+


Brian Olson

Brian Olson is the executive director of the La Red Health Centers. When there were those who felt that La Red would always be a small medical office serving the Hispanic community, Brian held steadfast to the vision of a large, comprehensive health care facility providing medical care, prenatal care, dental care, and behavioral health services. Brian is now recognized statewide as the force that led La Red’s decade of transformation from a small practice to a network of care sites providing fully integrated services. La Red has grown to three sites serving a wide range of community needs. He is a passionate advocate for the health needs of all and has worked tirelessly to develop a diverse, multilingual, and multicultural staff.