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We are the professional association of CHWs in Massachusetts dedicated to strengthening the workforce by

  1. Creating and/or lobbying for legislations that support the profession
  2. Advocating for recognition, integration, and fair compensation within the health and social service fields
  3. Creating and supporting professional development opportunities for CHWs in the state and nationally

Under the guidance of an Advisory Board, MACHW works tirelessly on behalf of the estimated 3000 plus CHWs in the state.

MACHW was created in 2000 by a dedicated group of CHWs. In 2014, MACHW merged with the Center for Health Impact (CHI), formerly Central Mass AHEC, in order to ensure sustainability and increase efficiency.


13 members with 2 year terms, renewable up to 3 times for a maximum of 6 years. That is, Advisory Board members serve a minimum of 2 years and a maximum of 6 years. Selection of new Advisory Board members will be done by MACHW staff and existing Advisory Board members according to established criteria.

The Board meets 6 times per year. Three of these meetings are face to face and take place in Worcester and 3 meetings held over the phone. In addition, Advisory Board members might be asked to join workgroups to address specific issues between meetings.

MACHW Advisory Board

Jaime Berberena*, City of New Bedford's Health Department

Nancy Borreani, Community Health Link, Leominster

Brenda Evans*, Pioneer Valley AHEC, Springfield Dept. of Health & Human Services, Springfield

John Gatto, JRI Health, Boston

Sharon Henderson*, YMCA of Central MA

Gail Hirsch, Office of Community Health Workers at Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Boston

Peggy Hogarty, Community Health Education Center (CHEC) at Boston Public Health Commission, Boston

Lorenza Holt*, Boston Association for Childbirth Education

Rose Kakoza, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston

Omar Irizarry*, Gandara Mental Health Center, West Springfield

Ramon Medina*, Edward M. Kennedy Health Center, Worcester

Shawn Matthews*, Whittier Street Health Center, Boston

Kerry Mello, Community Benefits Southcoast Health, New Bedford

Niem Nay-Kret*, Lowell Community Health Center, Lowell

Jeannette Rodriguez*, Caring Health Center, Springfield

Rainelle Walker-White*, mobile Family Van, Boston

* Denotes an active Community Health Worker.  An “active” CHW means someone currently employed at least half time as a CHW or someone who was employed at least half time as a CHW within the past four years.  Former MACHW Board of Directors agreed that the look-back period may be flexible, depending on individual considerations.
MACHW adds new Advisory Board Members at the Annual Meeting [Future date to be determined].  Please contact Lissette Blondet at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to be considered as a candidate.