Whitman-Walker Honors Tammy Baldwin

Community health center names out senator its ''Partner for Life'' ahead of April gala

Whitman-Walker Health, the local nonprofit community health center that specializes in HIV-related and LGBT care, announced today that it will present Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) with its annual Partner for Life award for her efforts at achieving better access health care for the LGBT community and people living with HIV/AIDS.

The Partner for Life award, given at Whitman-Walker’s annual spring fundraiser, ”Be the Care,” has in the past honored others who have crusaded on behalf of the LGBT and HIV/AIDS communities, including former President Bill Clinton, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius, the MAC AIDS Fund and Poz magazine.

”Senator Baldwin has been a great champion for improving access to high-quality, cost-effective health care for everyone, particularly those living with HIV/AIDS and the LGBT community,” Don Blanchon, Whitman-Walker’s executive director, said in a press release announcing the award. ”We are so grateful to have Senator Baldwin as a powerful and positive voice in the fight for health equity.”

”I am deeply honored by this recognition and proud of the work Whitman-Walker Health does to provide quality health care services for the community,” Baldwin said in a statement. ”For 35 years, Whitman-Walker Health has helped to break down barriers to accessing care, making sure that those in need do not fall through the cracks. We share a common commitment to improving access to high-quality, cost-effective health care for all Americans, including the LGBT community and people living with HIV/AIDS.”

The spring gala, marking its 20th year, is being co-chaired by Reggie Van Lee, the executive vice president of Booz Allen Hamilton; and Ceci Connolly, managing director of PwC’s Health Research Institute, a former reporter for The Washington Post and a member of Whitman-Walker’s board of directors. All money raised goes toward providing health care services to the community health center’s clients.

”In all my years reporting on health issues, I have rarely encountered an organization with Whitman-Walker’s superior one, two punch of first-rate care and commitment to community,” Connolly said in March 7 release. ”While much of the nation is just coming around to concepts such as coordinated, integrated care, Whitman-Walker is delivering it to thousands each day. We are so pleased that Sen. Baldwin and so many fine leaders in the community are standing with us to meet what is sadly a large and growing need in the region.”

Whitman-Walker Health’s spring fundraiser is being held on Thursday, April 18, at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, 1250 New York Ave. NW. Tickets, $150, may be purchased online at whitman-walker.org/bethecare.

John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com

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