WellShare International Announces Leadership Change

Diana DuBois to Retire, Michelle Heerey To Serve as Executive Director

Minneapolis, MN
May 8, 2019

The long-time executive director of WellShare International, a Minneapolis-based nonprofit organization aimed at improving access to health care for underserved populations, is handing over the reins to a veteran crusader of improved community health and well-being.

“It’s been a great honor to serve WellShare International. I’m hopeful our dedicated donors will continue to support this great organization in order to expand access to health care for refugees, immigrants, and other underserved communities,” said retiring executive director Diana DuBois. “I’m so pleased that the Board selected Michelle Heerey as the incoming executive director. I’m very confident that WellShare has a bright future under her leadership.”

The work of WellShare International is conducted by community health workers (CHWs). They are front-line, bi-lingual, bi-cultural staff who are trusted members of the communities they serve. Through one-on-one visits in homes and clinics, evidence-based classes, and the creation of health education materials in diverse languages, WellShare increases access to health care for thousands of people each year. In recent years, the organization has established numerous new strategic partnerships and built strong connections with the Somali and Karen refugee communities.

“I want to thank Diana for her dedication to WellShare International,” said Mr. Said Elmi, President of the WellShare International board of directors. “Under her leadership, we’ve grown from 1 to 18 staff members, developed strong partnerships and trust with refugee and immigrant communities, and established a ‘Center for Somali Health’.”

Incoming executive director Michelle Heerey most recently served as the Director of Field Services at Second Harvest Heartland, where she worked on strategic, operational, and organizational issues to end hunger in Minnesota and western Wisconsin. Prior to Second Harvest, she worked at American Refugee Committee, where she managed multi-sectoral humanitarian assistance programs in complex environments across Asia and Africa.

“Access to quality health care is not equal for all Minnesotans,” said Michelle Heery, incoming executive director of WellShare International. “Together, we can put the power of health into the hands of people who face the greatest barriers. I am honored and excited to have this opportunity to lead those efforts.”


Media Contact:
Paula Jimenez
AmeriCorps VISTA-Communications and Development Specialist

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