OAKLAND, California – Wednesday, February 16, 2022 – Asian Health Services (AHS) celebrates AHS COVID Program Manager Rena Wang, who is recognized as one of fifteen recipients of the Geiger Gibson Emerging Leader Award. The award recognizes the accomplishments of exceptional young members of the community health center movement who demonstrate conscientious leadership in improving the lives of medically underserved patients, communities, and special populations.
As the inaugural staff hired to lead AHS’ COVID comprehensive response, Wang has been on the forefront of ensuring care for Alameda County’s Asian American population during COVID-19, many of whom had “gone underground” due to the dual pandemic of COVID-19 and anti-Asian hate. Throughout the pandemic, Wang successfully implemented numerous multilingual popup services to meet the community needs in multiple locations, including parks, schools, and community centers. While working on the front lines to provide testing, vaccination and other health services, she also incorporated her research skills to gather disaggregated data in order to address inequities among specific ethnic groups.
“Without a doubt, Rena’s leadership helped us reduce the impact of COVID-19 on our community, displaying exemplary commitment and compassion” said Dr. Thu Quach, President of AHS. “Rena’s impact during the pandemic was immeasurable for the community and staff. She made significant contributions to our organization by proactively taking culturally and linguistically competent services into neighborhoods to address health disparities.”
The Emerging Leader Award is designed to highlight and share the accomplishments of exceptional young members of the community and celebrate young leaders whose specific work has helped further the health center mission of healthcare and better health for medically underserved patients, communities, and special populations. Over the past two years of the pandemic, Wang led a multi-lingual and multicultural team of over 30 staff, providing more than 75,000 COVID tests and over 40,000 vaccinations, working year-round, in the heat, cold, rain, and through daytime and nighttime. This award celebrates and recognizes Wang and the extraordinary AHS COVID team who have been on the frontlines to serve and advocate for our community.
Asian Health Services (AHS) is a federally qualified community health center that provides medical, dental and behavioral health services in 14 different languages to medically-underserved families throughout Alameda County and surrounding communities. Our mission is to serve and advocate for the medically underserved, including the immigrant and refugee Asian community, and to ensure equal access to health care services regardless of income, insurance status, language or culture. For more information, visit asianhealthservices.org