Oak Park Recognizes Public Health Service Organizations and Individuals

Two individuals and four local organizations have been honored with the 2023 Dr. William Fitzsimmons Public Health Award for their contributions to the health and well-being of Oak Park residents, village officials said on the village website. announced in the release.

The award was named after Fitzsimmons, who served as a medical consultant for the Oak Park Health Department from 1976 to 1992, according to the announcement.

“A humanitarian who volunteered in his village, Dr. Fitzsimmons is remembered for his compassion for others, his deep love of medicine, and his dedication to public service, regardless of race or socioeconomic status. It is being done,” a village official said on its website.

The village health board and public health department will present annual awards in the categories of community, leadership and health equity, according to the release.

In a release, officials said community award winners included staff from the Cheney Mansion in Oak Park’s Park District. They opened their facility to the public around normal business hours for a vaccine clinic during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“They also spent time knowing the vaccine and who was eligible, so they could answer questions when people called on behalf of the health department for information on clinics. ‘ said the official in a release.

The community award-winning collaboration for toddlers reached out to the Department of Health during the pandemic to coordinate weekly check-ins with Director Theresa Chapple, resulting in multiple early childhood programs in Oak Park being tested for the latest COVID-19 infection. You can now receive guidance about your illness. state.

“As members of the early childhood community, this resource has been invaluable in our successful mitigation of COVID-19 in the midst of school reopening,” the official said in a release.

Community award winner Live4Lali, an Arlington Heights resident, regularly reaches out to Oak Park, both by van and on foot, and says it’s how she builds relationships with the village’s homeless. stated in the release.

“The Live4Lali team’s dedication and concern for Oak Park residents experiencing substance use disorders is a testament to expanding its programs into the community, and the strength of the partnership Live4Lali has developed with Oak Park community organizations. You can see it in the numbers,” the official said. release.

Leadership Award-winning Oak Park Riverforest Chamber of Commerce focuses on community health to educate communities and provide a platform for health officials to share expertise and engage with the public The statement said that they had organized a number of events aimed at

“By facilitating such partnerships, the Chamber of Commerce has facilitated the dissemination of important health information and created a sense of togetherness in our community,” officials said in a release.

Community award winner Alicia Chastain, a member of the Illinois Stakeholders Leadership Team on School Air Quality, helped introduce legislation to improve clean air in all schools across Illinois. , to date HB3713 passed the Illinois House of Representatives. state.

“At a time when the community was becoming divided over the pandemic response, Alicia continued to focus on whether widespread public health changes could improve the school learning environment in her community,” the official said. said in a statement.

Community award winner Kelly O’Connor recruited and maintained Oak Park Township’s Positive Youth Development (+PYD) task force of individuals and community organizations to educate each other about their work and current issues. , sharing experiences and collaborating on programs, the release said.

“Her knowledge, positive attitude and inclusive philosophy make her a strong leader and contribute to the effectiveness of the collaborations formed through the +PYD Task Force. We are well aware of the social determinants that underlie her, which have helped create an equitable approach to her work,” the official said in a statement.

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