Naples, Fl – David Lawrence Center (DLC), Collier County’s only comprehensive, not-for-profit mental health and addiction recovery treatment center serving children, adults and families, is pleased to announce that the Florida Diversity Council named Immokalee Clinical Coordinator, Mariana Perez, the “2018 Distinguished Healthcare Diversity Advocate”. She received the award at the 2018 Florida Healthcare Diversity Summit which highlights the importance of diversity and inclusion efforts in the healthcare industry throughout the state of Florida.
Perez is a bilingual Licensed Mental Health Counselor from Columbia. She first joined DLC in 2010 as a Case Manager. She was then promoted to an Emergency Services Clinician and again when she transferred to the Immokalee Satellite Office in 2013. Upon receiving her license in 2016, she was then promoted to her current leadership position as the Immokalee Clinical Coordinator.
Perez was recognized as a Distinguished Healthcare Diversity Advocate for her leadership and dedication in addressing the unique challenges of the diverse, at-risk population in the Immokalee community. Nearly half the residents of this largely migrant community live below the poverty line and struggle daily accessing healthcare due to language barriers, transportation and childcare. Due to her outreach activities, which include serving on a community coalition, staffing health fairs, giving talks on mental health and coordinating the DLC float for the Annual Immokalee Christmas Parade, services have increased at the Immokalee office. Her efforts have helped eliminate cultural barriers to accessing treatment by putting a culturally competent, compassionate and welcoming face to David Lawrence Center’s services.
Her passion and leadership were also recognized when she earned the DLC Team Player Award in 2011 and the DLC Employee of the Year Award in 2016.