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Mayor Barrett Announces the City of Milwaukee’s Newly-Created Board of Health Appointees

Nine members representing a broad spectrum of experiences and practices in public health, clinical practice and community engagement to serve staggered terms

June 25, 2019    

MILWAUKEE—Mayor Tom Barrett is pleased to announce his appointees to the City of Milwaukee’s newly-created Board of Health. These individuals appointed by the Mayor will advise the Health Department on policy and advocate for sound public health practices that improve health outcomes for all Milwaukeeans.

The City of Milwaukee’s newly formed Board of Health was created by legislation adopted by the Common Council and signed by the Mayor in February of 2019.

“The individuals appointed to the Board of Health bring experience and understanding of the array of public health issues facing Milwaukee,” said Mayor Tom Barrett. “Together, their energy and expertise will set the direction for the Health Department and make sure we are supporting great health outcomes for every Milwaukee resident.”

Wisconsin Statutes require any local board of health to include a medical doctor and registered nurse. In addition, City ordinance (59-3) requires the board to have five members with backgrounds in science and public health. The City of Milwaukee’s newly formed Board of Health meets all of these necessary requirements. Three of the appointees also have expertise and experience in the social determinants of health, a growing focus of public health policy nationwide.

Mayor Barrett’s Board of Health Appointees:

Ruthie Burich-Weatherly, an independent health communication consultant who has worked over ten years in direct service and communications for HIV/AIDS and STI prevention. Burich-Weatherly formerly worked at the AIDS Resource Center of WI and MN AIDS Project.

Caroline Gomez-Tom was recently named Director of Patient and Community Engagement at Sixteenth Street Community Health Centers. Gomez-Tom’s work at Covering WI enrolling individuals in health insurance was a critical part of Milwaukee winning the 2015 Healthy Cities Challenge.

Bria Grant is the Executive Director of UniteMKE, a non-profit that trains and supports Community Health Workers and connects community health programs with data and evaluation opportunities.

Ald. Chantia Lewis is the 9th District Alderwoman of Milwaukee, a member of the Public Safety and Health Committee and the lead sponsor of legislation creating the City’s new Board of Health.

Julia Means, RN is a Parish and Community Health Nurse for Ascension Health-St. Mary’s. Means created the Blanket of Love program offering pre- and post-natal support and education for new and expectant mothers and their families.

LaNelle Ramey is the Director of Black and Latino Male Achievement for Milwaukee Public Schools. Ramey previously connected and supported Milwaukee youth through his work at Safe & Sound, the YMCA and Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee.

Dr. Marylyn Ranta, MD is the Associate Chief Medical Officer at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. Dr. Ranta is a pediatrician who has worked in private practice as well as public health. Her work at Children’s includes addressing social determinants of health and advocating for effective vaccine policy.

Ericka Sinclair is the CEO of Greater Milwaukee Center for Health and Wellness, a primary care clinic also offering resources for transgender individuals. Her public health work includes lab research, clinical care management and disease prevention and intervention.

Prof. Wujie Zhang is an Associate Professor of Biomolecular Engineering at the Milwaukee School of Engineering. Professor Zhang’s research work includes drug delivery and nanotechnology applications for cancer treatment. He is an advocate for health equity for LGBTQ+ individuals and other marginalized populations.

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