Crescent Community Health Center Advocacy Awards are given annually to individuals who are dedicated community stakeholders, board members, patients or others who have impacted the work of Crescent and enabled our progress toward fulfilling our vision, quality care for all, resulting in a healthy community. This year’s awardees include Senator Pam Jochum and Dr. Liang Chee Wee.
“These two individuals have shown immense dedication to supporting our mission and helping Crescent grow to serve the healthcare needs of our community,” said Gary Collins, CEO. “Health centers rely on advocates to help us grow. Since 1965, health centers have grown to serve more than 30 million Americans. Additionally, with supporters like our awardees, health centers have become substantial economic drivers with a $35.5 million annual economic impact in Iowa alone.”
Read below for more information on each awardee:
Dr. Liang Chee Wee
When Dr. Liang Chee Wee speaks, the first thing that he shares is his mission of lifting people and enhancing community vitality. In his own words, “For us to do this, it means meeting people where they are, understanding the people we serve.”
Crescent has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Northeast Iowa Community College as a clinical site for their dental assisting students, along with providing educational fairs and assistance to our patients. Dr. Wee felt we could do more working together as a true partner. Thanks to innovative conversations between Crescent’s chief dental officer, Dr. Rouman and Dr. Wee, a plan was made to address the workforce shortage and demand for dental hygienists. This task could have been viewed as an impossible feat, but Dr. Wee brought in his team and helped drive this dream to become a reality.
Dr. Wee is one of Crescent’s biggest cheerleaders, attending events and seeing firsthand the shared populations we serve, as well as witnessing those that are bettering their lives. Dr. Wee is a champion for the underserved and believes in health equity for all.
Senator Pam Jochum
Senator Pam Jochum fits the definition of Advocacy through her take-charge efforts to expand affordable, quality and compassionate healthcare in our community. Her behaviors and beliefs directly align with the mission of Crescent. Jochum has played a leading role in expanding affordable health insurance coverage to thousands of working Iowans and has stood up for citizens with disabilities to protect their health services when the Governor privatized Iowa’s Medicaid system.
While serving in the House in 2004, Representative Jochum was a catalyst for a new incubator appropriation for the establishment of Tri-State Community Health Center, now known as Crescent Community Health Center. This million-dollar appropriation gave Crescent the strength to progress and engage with key stakeholders, moving Crescent from a vision to a reality.
This year, Senator Jochum will celebrate 30 years of serving the people of Iowa, especially her hometown of Dubuque. Pam believes creating an economy that works for all Iowans is vital to Iowa’s future. That means living wage jobs, top-notch education, quality childcare and affordable healthcare.
Crescent Community Health Center first opened its doors in October of 2006. Crescent was founded by a group of dedicated board members made up of community stakeholders who identified the need for primary medical and dental care for underserved populations. Since then, Crescent has been providing high-quality primary and preventive medical and dental care to members of the community.