In keeping with its mission as a community-based managed care organization, Hudson Health Plan actively encourages employees to help the communities they serve. That’s why Rockland County resident Juan Pablo Ramirez joined Hudson as a community relations representative seven years ago. Now, his extraordinary contributions and commitment to important Rockland grassroots organizations are being honored this month by two separate organizations, the Rockland Economic Development Corporation and the Spring Valley Branch of the NAACP.
Mr. Ramirez, 33, and a resident of Spring Valley, was recognized on October 4th as one of Rockland’s “Rising Stars” at a reception honoring the 2012 “Forty Under 40” young leaders. As the driving force behind Jornaleros Humanitarian Project of Rockland County and Faith in Action Ministries – two prominent grassroots efforts to help immigrants and minorities in the county – Mr. Ramirez has made a real difference in the lives of many community members. Chosen by Rockland Economic Development Corporation, recipients are judged on their professional and entrepreneurial accomplishments; community involvement; and the nominee’s positive impact on the Rockland community.
On October 28th, Mr. Ramirez will receive the “Unsung Hero” award from the Spring Valley Branch of the NAACP at its fall membership gala. The award honors the behind-the-scenes work that Mr. Ramirez has done to increase Latino and African American representation on local school boards and to foster community dialog towards combatting racism.
“It means a lot to me to be selected for the “Forty Under 40” list and to receive the NAACP “Unsung Hero” award,” Mr. Ramirez explains. “I have great respect for the people who have received these awards in the past. But I am equally honored to have a chance to help people in the community. Knowing that I and Hudson Health Plan change their lives for the better is the best reward I can ever have.”
Mr. Ramirez adds that these honors reflect not just how the community feels about his contributions, but about Hudson, as well. “Hudson plays a vital role in every community we serve,” he points out. “We take care of members and non-members, and we don’t limit our work to providing access to affordable health care. People are hurting, and we refer them to food banks, employment centers, and social services. We help the whole person.”
Eight Community Initiatives
Mr. Ramirez, who represents Hudson in both Rockland and Westchester counties, has been deeply involved with at least eight community initiatives. He and his family started Jornaleros Humanitarian Project of Rockland County and Faith in Action Ministries to help immigrants obtain the services and documentation they need.
He is active in the Rockland Immigration Coalition, the Hudson Valley Community Coalition, Helping Hands, the Latino Pastors Association of Rockland, a community soccer league, and the Rockland Haitian Relief Taskforce. In 2010, Mr. Ramirez received the “Making a Difference” award from the Association for Community Affiliated Plans (ACAP) in recognition of his outstanding service to the community and for going beyond the norm to help thousands of underserved residents.
Georganne Chapin, President & CEO of Hudson, notes: “Juan Pablo is inspired to help others by his own experience as a child who emigrated from Colombia to the United States with his mother and grandmother. He understands the challenges that face immigrants and minorities, and he has created and sustained grassroots efforts that open doors of opportunity for them. He truly is an unsung hero, and we are happy that these two respected organizations are giving him the recognition he deserves.”
About Hudson Health Plan
Hudson Health Plan is a community-based not-for-profit health care organization that provides state-sponsored Medicaid Managed Care, Child Health Plus, and Family Health Plus insurance coverage to over 115,000 members in New York’s Hudson Valley. Hudson uses every government dollar it receives to fulfill its mission, which is “to promote and provide access to excellent health services for all people.” Hudson improves the health of its members and the communities in which they live through its innovations in care coordination, and by supporting over 5,000 local health providers. Hudson received the national 2012 Medicaid Health Plan Innovation Award for its Westchester Cares Action Program, an innovative integrated care management project. In both 2009 and 2010, Hudson achieved the highest quality incentive scores of any Medicaid plan in New York State, and in 2010, it received the highest overall performance rating of any Medicaid plan in the Hudson Valley. It also has earned the highest ratings in overall satisfaction among Medicaid Managed Care members in the Hudson Valley region every year since 2003.