Dezerae Rawlings, MA-C, is currently the Operations Associate. Dezerae used to be part of the CoLEAD management team, focused on internal operations, special initiatives, program project management, and program personnel support. She was responsible for working closely with the CoLEAD Program Coordinator to provide program oversight, integrity and person-centered care for all CoLEAD participants. Rawlings has a medical background with a wide range of experience including 4 years of community health. She completed an associate’s degree in applied science at Olympic College in Bremerton and has goals to complete her MBA and MPA.
Prior to joining PDA, Dezerae served her community by volunteering with Stand Up for Kids, a national nonprofit for homeless teens, handed out meals to those in need with local nonprofits, and advocated on the behalf of her local homeless population by sharing her personal experience with West Sound for Social Justice and her local legislatives. During her 4 years in community health, she helped support the provider with medical, behavioral health, medically assisted treatment (MAT), and connected patients with local resources to help bridge any barriers they encountered to help make healthcare more accessible.
One of Dezerae’s signature accomplishments was when she was given the opportunity to give back to an organization she once utilized as a homeless teen. She shared a glimpse of her story in a national video for Stand Up for Kids that brought awareness, minimized the stigma with the homeless teen population, and shared what Stand Up for Kids did for her during her time without a home. It was also shown at her local commissioner luncheon where the director of the nonprofit and organization received well deserved recognition for their community efforts and service.
Dezerae utilizes her lived and professional experience to engage with program participants and support them in their journey to stability. Rawlings approaches her work with the core belief that everyone deserves to have accessible housing, treatment, medical care, and to partake in the decision making of their own health without feeling stigmatized by the healthcare system. As someone who has walked a similar journey she believes that everyone is capable of writing their own story to stability and success given the proper resources.