Albany, NY – Reverend Jeanette J. Phillips, one of Hudson River Health Care’s Founding Mothers, was honored by the New York Legislature today in the State Capital. Assemblywoman Sandra Galef sponsored a resolution in the Assembly, and Senators Jen Metzger and Peter Harckham sponsored a proclamation in the Senate to recognize Rev. Phillips’ achievements in improving access to quality health care services in under-served communities across the Hudson Valley. The legislators also spoke on the floors of their respective houses to honor Reverend Phillips’ life’s work.
In 1975, Reverend Jeannette J. Phillips launched Hudson River Health Care’s (HRHCare) flagship health center in Peekskill to fulfill the unmet needs of that city, particularly in the African American community. In so doing, she was instrumental in growing community support for the center – then known as the Peekskill Area Ambulatory Health Care Center – and served as its first Outreach Director and Board Chair. Forty-four years later, that single location in Peekskill has grown into Hudson River Health Care, the largest network of community health centers in New York State, providing services to over 225,000 people annually in the Hudson Valley, Long Island, and all five boroughs.
Today, Rev. Phillips is an icon of the Peekskill community. In addition to serving as the Executive Vice President of Community Development at HRHCare, she is an Associate Minister at Park Street African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, and is deeply involved in local community-based organizations that focus on youth development and education in Peekskill. She has been honored for her accomplishments on numerous occasions, including by the Hudson Gateway Chamber of Commerce and the Hudson Valley Women’s Association and Friends. In 2015, the health center in Peekskill, which she founded, was re-named in her honor as the Jeanette J. Phillips Health Center.
“We are extraordinarily thankful to New York State Assemblywoman Sandra Galef and Senators Jen Metzger and Pete Harckham for honoring one of our Founding Mothers, the Reverend Jeannette J. Phillips,” said Anne Kaufman Nolon, CEO of Hudson River Health Care. “Reverend Phillips’ dedication to service has had a lasting impact on the health care landscape in New York State. Her pioneering work over the last four decades has allowed Hudson River Health Care to now provide quality services to over 225,000 people in the downstate region. She truly embodies the values and mission of Hudson River Health Care in everything she does, and we are proud that the New York State Legislature took this opportunity to recognize her.”
“It was my great honor to introduce the Reverend Jeannette J. Phillips and recognize her significant and groundbreaking accomplishments as a pioneer in securing access to health care for the underserved, and as one of the Founding Mothers of Hudson River Health Care. It is fitting that as we celebrate Black History Month, we recognize this extraordinary woman who contributed so much to overcoming racial and economic barriers to access to quality health care in ways that continue to shape and inform healthcare delivery in the state of New York,” said Senator Jen Metzger, 42nd Senate District.
“Reverend Phillips is an inspiration to all those who work to provide quality health care to underserved populations in New York,” said Senator Pete Harckham, 40th Senate District. “Without her leadership and determination, Hudson River Health Care would not exist today. We owe her a debt of gratitude for her four decades of work in improving the lives of thousands of New Yorkers.”
“It was a pleasure to honor Reverend Jeannette Phillips today on the Assembly floor, and acknowledge her lifelong commitment to providing high-quality, affordable healthcare in our community,” said Assemblywoman Sandy Galef. “Reverend Phillips has proven herself to be an accomplished leader, overseeing the expansion of Hudson River Health Care over the last four decades. What is particularly impressive about Reverend Phillips’ leadership, however, is that it is clear she has never lost sight of the organization’s founding goal—providing critical care to those in need. Her commitment to civic involvement is further exemplified by her work as Associate Minister of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, as well as her work in many community-based organizations. I am continually grateful to the work of this exemplary woman for the residents of Peekskill and communities throughout the state.”
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