HCH 2022 Awards and Videos

HCH 2022 Conference Materials

Philip W. Brickner National Leadership Award

This award honors the late Dr. Philip W. Brickner, heralded as the founder of the HCH movement. The award recognizes an individual who has significantly strengthened service and advocacy addressing the health status of people without homes.

Vincent Keane

Vincent Keane retired as president and chief executive officer of Unity Health Care in Washington, D.C., in December 2021. In addition to his responsibilities for Unity Health Care, he has been actively involved in the development of national health care policy as it addresses the needs of the medically under-served and poor communities. Last year, Unity served 101,000 individual patients and generated more than 500,000 patient visits. Since coming to the United States from Ireland in 1969, Keane has been
involved in the non-profit sector including work in the Catholic Diocese of
Arlington providing social services and pastoral care within several parish
communities. From 1987 to 1990 he served as director of development for the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC). In 1990 he became executive director of Health Care for the Homeless Project (HCHP) Washington, D.C., which later became Unity Health Care, Inc.

In nominating Keane for this award, it was stated that his “commitment to improving health access and health equity in DC is simultaneously a commitment to racial equity in a city where poverty, homelessness and poor health outcomes disproportionately affect black and brown communities.”

Ellen Dailey Consumer Advocate Award

NCAB’s Ellen Dailey Consumer Advocate Award honors the spirit and strength of founding member Ellen Dailey, a passionate champion of consumer voices in the provision of homeless services who was instrumental in starting the Consumer Advisory Board in Boston and NCAB. The award recognizes an outstanding consumer advocate who exemplifies Dailey’s courage and passion for inclusion.

Valarie Dowell

Valarie Dowell has been a strong advocate and front line worker for people experiencing homelessness for more than 20 years. She believes her personal experiences of being homeless and in recovery enable her to serve the homeless population with compassion, understanding, and empathy. Dowell was one of the first consumers to become a community health worker. According to her nominator, Dowell has fought the fight from both sides of the fence and is filled not only with innovative ideas, but possesses an in-depth knowledge of how to use lived experience as a tool for advocacy. “Her continued service and tireless dedication exemplify the very essence of the spirit with which the great Ellen Dailey served.”

Karen Rotondo Award for Outstanding Service

Recognizing an exemplary clinician who demonstrates vision and creativity in advancing the goals of ending and preventing homelessness, the Karen Rotondo Award for Outstanding Service honors the memory and legacy of Rotondo, the “Founding Mother” of the HCH Clinicians’ Network.

Jessie Gaeta

Jessie M. Gaeta, MD, has practiced internal medicine at Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program since 2002, and served as chief medical officer from 2015-2022. Dually board certified in internal medicine and addiction medicine, she has advocated for and with people living with substance use disorders, particularly when they are disconnected from traditional pathways to care. Over the past two decades, she has led innovative initiatives to re-think the approach to care for individuals with substance use disorder and complex health conditions, particularly when these conditions are exacerbated by severe poverty, racism, trauma, and social stigma. According to a colleague, “Dr. Gaeta is a big-picture thinker with a love of day-to-day doctoring.”

Willie J. Mackey National Medical Respite Award

Named in honor of the late Willie J. Mackey, a dedicated member of the RCPN Steering Committee and fierce advocate for medical respite care, the Willie J. Mackey National Medical Respite Award recognizes outstanding contributions to the field of medical respite/recuperative care as determined by impact on improved health and quality of life for people without homes.

Dawn Petroskas

Dawn Petroskas is the operations manager for Hennepin County Public Health Clinical Services, and she managed the HCH program from 2014-2021. She has been involved in the delivery of homeless health care services for 18 years, starting as the first medical respite nurse at Hennepin County HCH. Petroskas has extensive experience leading interdisciplinary care teams and developing innovative programs to meet the needs of people experiencing homelessness. She helped start a transitional housing-based medical respite program at Catholic Charities Exodus residence, which has grown into The Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation Recuperative Care Center, a new 30-bed respite program that will open in June 2022.

John N. Lozier Scholarship for New Members

The John N. Lozier Scholarship honors the Council’s founding executive director, who shepherded the Council from a single staff and a handful of members to more than 20 staff and 220 members before his retirement in December 2016.

Mario Salazar

Mario Salazar is a medical assistant at the San Francisco Community Health Center and is a key member of the street medicine team, which goes out weekly, by foot, to provide primary care to those living on the street, in encampments or safe sleep centers. According to his nominator, Salazar “is passionate and professional in his care and has expressed interest in advancing his knowledge and understanding of the complex factors impacting the care of patients experiencing homelessness.”

Kassandra Frederique

Executive Director, Drug Policy Alliance Kassandra Frederique is the executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, a national nonprofit that works to end the war on drugs—which has disproportionately harmed Black, Latinx, Indigenous, immigrant, and LGBTQ communities—and build alternatives grounded in science, compassion, health, and human rights.

Bobby Watts

Executive Director, National Health Care for the Homeless Council Due to inclement weather, the rally was held indoors. Bobby Watts was one of the many speakers at the event.

Kevin Lindamood

CEO, Health Care for the Homeless Baltimore Due to inclement weather, the rally was held indoors. Kevin Lindamood was one of the many speakers at the event.

First Day

A collection of partial video clips of the first day’s talks


A montage of images through the conference
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