Congratulations to this year’s scholarship and award recipients, who we honored during the 2023 Annual National Health Care for the Homeless Conference & Policy Symposium in Baltimore! Watch the full awards luncheon — including speeches by those honored — here.
Philip W. Brickner National Leadership Award
Brian Bickford is a licensed mental health counselor in Worcester, Mass. Brian is the Regional Manager for Eliot Community Human Services PATH team. He has found the perfect mixture of engaging with community members, providing direct care, supporting team members, and advocating at state and national levels for human rights. Brian is completing his sixth year on the National HCH Council Clinicians’ Network Steering Committee and is the immediate past Chair. He has served on NHCHC’s Board of Directors and Administrators Committee, has been involved in many local and national task forces, committees, and has lectured and provided training focused on Harm Reduction, Outreach Practices, and Housing and Homelessness. Brian advocates for community members who have been silenced, abused, and neglected by families, communities, organizations, institutions, and policy makers. He carries the voice of those he serves and aspires to support, nourish, and call for human rights, dignity, respect, and community connections.
Ellen Dailey Consumer Advocate Award
Albert Miller is grateful that he is alive and has the opportunity to help with the goals of Baltimore’s Health Care for the Homeless every day, which is the elimination of homelessness. Albert says his small part is dealing with inspiration, hope, and always giving a helping hand anywhere and anytime. His goal is to be an ambassador of Health Care for the Homeless for the rest of his life. He is thankful for all who have helped him – seen and unseen — and now he is back to work in the streets.
Karen Rotondo Award for Outstanding Service
Jackie Alba-Nguyen, MD, is Assistant Medical Director at Valley Homeless Healthcare Program in San Jose, Calif. Jackie practices primary care, street medicine, trans care, and addiction medicine. In 2016, Jackie and VHHP opened the Gender Health Clinic for people experiencing homelessness, which later expanded to the Gender Health Center serving the entire county, regardless of housing status. Jackie has fiercely advocated to halt encampment sweeps in her community and for initiatives to decriminalize homelessness. A colleague says, “Dr. Alba-Nguyen does not simply provide medical services for her patients. She is inspired to create lasting systemic changes to improve the way her patients and future generations are treated. She has a genuine way of getting people to look at systemic inequities through a human lens which is her superpower.”
William J. Mackey National Medical Respite Award
Monte Hank has worked with people experiencing homelessness for the past 30 years, first providing Client Services/Case Management at Wasatch Homeless Health Care, Inc./ Fourth Street Clinic for 26 years. While there he created and developed Case Management/Care Coordination, a Recuperative Care Program, a Dental Referral Project, a TEAM approach (CPI) to address potentially violent situations and a Drug Assistance Program. He is one of the founders for the original idea of “Recuperative Care & Hospice Care” which became The INN Between. Monte was also a member of the original group who met in Chicago in 1999 to help form the Respite Care Provider Network. He has been at The INN Between for more than four years, first working as the Administrator for the Assisted Living side and now as Client Services Director. Prior to this career (at 41) he returned to school to obtain an AS degree in Ethnic Minority Health & Human Services and a BA in Organizational Business. His prior education was from the “school of hard knocks.”
John N. Lozier Scholarship for New Members
Jessica Ward is the Data Manager for Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless. Jessica Analyzes data and provides important insights for the organization. These insights allow her to identify patterns and trends that are used to directly aid in policy and programming decisions. The improved policies and programming that has evolved from Jessica’s assistance has helped create positive outcomes for not only the staff, but the community she has passionately served for 7 years. Jessica focuses her career goals around advancing her skill-set and knowledge through continued education. She believes that she can always find more ways to improve the lives she influences by being a perpetual student.