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Excellence is just the beginning.

Office of Community Health
Equity and Engagement

Committed to Community

Our mission

The mission of the Office of Community Health Equity and Engagement is to enable and support Rush University Medical Center in fulfilling its commitment to improve the quality of life within Rush’s diverse neighboring communities through initiatives and partnerships.

These are some of the ways we achieve this mission:

  • Assessing the health needs of our community and developing strategies to address these needs
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of Rush programs in meeting the needs of our community
  • Reporting and communicating Rush’s community engagement efforts to its internal and external communities
  • Developing and strengthening effective community partnerships
  • Coordinating community-based experiences for students at Rush to enhance their ability to care for diverse populations
  • Serving students and families by providing quality, accessible health care within Rush’s school-based health centers and the Adolescent Family Center

Meet the team

Darlene Oliver Hightower, JD
Vice President, Community Health Equity

Julia Bassett
Manager, Health and Community Benefit

Sharon Gates
Senior Director, Rush Community Service Initiative Programs

LaDawne Jenkins
Manager, Operations and Community Engagement Initiatives

Rukiya Curvey Johnson
Director, Rush Education and Career Hub (REACH)

Kimberly Johnson
Program Coordinator

Sally Lemke
Director, Community Health Clinics

Thomas Molina
Manager, Financial Operations

Christopher Nolan
System Manager, Community Health and Benefits

Tiffany Vazquez
Program Coordinator

Learn More