As Black History Month comes to an end, we celebrate the African American pioneers who have made, and continue to make, important contributions in health care and beyond.
At Alameda Health System (AHS), we are proud to have a diverse staff moving the health of our community forward every day of the year.
We’d like to tell you about four African Americans at AHS. Read about a father and son who both work at Highland Hospital and twin sisters who participated in AHS’s HealthPATH career prep program.
“I’ve been in nursing for 28 years. I’m nearing retirement age, but I’m really proud to see my son Joseph [featured below] beginning his career at Alameda Health System. I’ve worked at Alta Bates and at Kaiser, where I was often the only black male in my field, but Highland always felt like the right place to be. At Highland I’ve been proud to worked with a black Chief of Surgery and with black surgical teams to save lives. Alameda Health System is ‘my community.’ Years ago I was walking down the street in East Oakland, and this guy approaches me and starts lifting up his shirt. At first I was alarmed, but he showed me a large scar on his stomach and exclaimed, ‘You’re the guy who saved my life!’ He thanked me profusely, and I was reminded that God in me in the right place to use my skills.”
“My father inspired my career path. I was privileged to see him, an African American man, working at AHS. I got the chance to know many of his co-workers who are also African American doctors, nurses, surgeons and more. This kind of diversity felt normal for me, but I learned that many people of color didn’t grow up with this example. Many of the students I teach today didn’t see themselves in health careers before joining HealthPATH.Growing up my father always told me to, ‘Do what people need.’ I want to be the bridge that connects students to the hands-on training with professionals they need to be our next generation of health care professionals.”
Kameya & Kamiya Turner both participated in HealthPATH, a career development program for youth and young adults to explore careers in health care at our hospitals and wellness centers. Joseph, featured above, is an instructor/coordinator at HealthPATH.