Andrae Ivy, Research Coordinator, Email
Andrae Ivy is currently the Research Coordinator at the Grand Rapids African American Health Institute (GRAAHI) in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Andrae is an Epidemiologist who received his Master of Public Health degree from Saint Louis University and his Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Grambling State University. Andrae worked for nearly 5.5 years at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in CDC’s Healthy Communities Program and CDC’s Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention. Andrae also functioned as the Director of Quality Management at Amerigroup Community Care in 2012. At GRAAHI, Andrae is the project lead for GRAAHI’s Health Equity Index that empowers West Michigan residents with health data and information. Andrae also writes and prepares grants for the organization. Looking forward, Andrae will continue to perform research and develop innovative projects to impact lives in Michigan and around the country.
Michael Brent, Care Connect CHW, Email
Michael Brent is a Grand Rapids native who received his BSW and MSW from Western Michigan University. He has spent the past 10 years working as a Community Outreach Specialist. This includes working the past five years as a Community Outreach Resource Coordinator for Network 180’s Project Get Connected.
Michael also has prior experience as a mental health and substance abuse therapist. He currently is a Community Health Worker (CHW) for GRAAHI’s new Care Connect Program. He will be located at St. Phillip’s Episcopal Church and at Renaissance Church of God In Christ.
Shannon Wilson, Executive Director, Email
Shannon Wilson is an up and coming community leader focused on improving the health and well being of residents in the Grand Rapids Area. Ms. Wilson is passionate about strengthening the health care safety net for vulnerable populations and has devoted most of her career to studying the intersection between health and race, with a desire to improve the health care experience for minority populations.
Ms. Wilson serves as the Executive Director of the Grand Rapids African American Health Institute (GRAAHI), an organization working to improve the health and health care of the community through research, education and advocacy. As the Executive Director, Ms. Wilson is ultimately responsible for the planning and execution of all Institute activities, including but not limited to: strategic planning, community outreach, research initiatives, and local, state and national advocacy efforts.
In addition, Ms. Wilson serves as adjunct faculty for Grand Valley State University and on-call faculty for Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine.
Ms. Wilson received her Bachelors of Science in Microbiology from Michigan State University and her Masters of Public Health in Hospital and Molecular Epidemiology from The University of Michigan. She is currently pursuing a doctorate in public health leadership from the University of Illinois-Chicago. Prior to accepting her positions in Grand Rapids, Ms. Wilson worked as the state of Michigan’s first Health Disparities Epidemiologist, and as a Domestic Scientific Program Coordinator for the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, GA.
Shannon is happily married and has an inquisitive four-year old girl.
Tony Jolliffi, Strong Fathers Coordinator, Email
Tony Jolliffi attended Detroit Public Schools and Detroit College of Business. He moved to Grand Rapids in 2009 from Detroit with his wife Shena and their children. Tony is a self-motivated entrepreneur with almost 20 years of experience starting and cultivating businesses and ideas He is a 2012 Graduate of Word of Faith Layman’s Ministry Training Center, 2013 graduate of the UCC Leadership Training Program, and in 2013 he was certified by UNC as a Health Equity Practitioner. In 2010 Tony began working for the Grand Rapids Public Schools and experienced first-hand the need for positive male figures in the lives of children. In 2012 Tony joined the Grand Rapids African American Health Institute in the capacity of Fatherhood Coordinator of the Strong Fathers Fatherhood Initiative for the Strong Beginnings Program. Tony has a passion for fatherhood and family. Since moving to Grand Rapids, Tony has combined his passion for improving his community and his desire to help men reach their full potential through Strong Fathers. Tony is rooted in faith and driven by the urgency of change.