Edgewater board members Larry Brewer, l-r, Colleen Ramquist, Sen. Lonnie Randolph, Dr. Danita Johnson-Hughes, Sharon Johnson-Shirley

Dr. Danita Johnson Hughes named Sagamore of the Wabash

Contributed By:The 411 News

For distinguished service to the state in helping people improve their lives

Gov. Eric Holcomb has awarded the Sagamore of the Wabash, Indiana’s highest honor to Dr. Danita Johnson-Hughes, Edgewater Health President & CEO. It is a personal tribute usually given to those who have rendered a distinguished service to the state or to the governor and is recognized as the highest honor the governor bestows.

State Senator Lonnie Randolph presented the award to Dr. Hughes on Friday, August 20 at an Edgewater Board of Director’s Retreat held at the Bottleworks Hotel in Indianapolis.

Dr Hughes has distinguished herself as an individual who strives to make a measurable difference in community health and well-being for as many Hoosiers as possible.

She has served in the role of CEO of Edgewater Health for over twenty-five years. During her entire tenure, she has remained the only African American female serving in this capacity in the state of Indiana. Edgewater also operates a federal qualified health center look alike and community mental health center combined.

Dr. Hughes has met the challenges of these complex systems to ensure that quality health care services are available and accessible to marginalized populations in Northwest Indiana. During her tenure, she has expanded Edgewater services to include primary care, as well as a comprehensive array of services for mental health, addictions and child welfare.

Under her leadership, the organization has contributed millions of dollars to the economic development of the city of Gary through the development and expansion of services including several housing programs for homeless individuals.

“I am honored and humbled by this incredible recognition. I am blessed to have a career where I can help people improve their lives. Being an advocate for patients and others is what I live for each and every day,” Dr. Hughes said in accepting the award. “My personal mission is to serve as a leader who inspires and teaches as many people as possible for as long as possible to live their best lives.”

The award is recognition of respect Hughes has earned from the health care industry both locally and nationally. She has worked diligently with local, state and federal officials to influence public policy that will better serve underserved and uninsured individuals. She is a strong voice on issues of fairness and equity for all people.

Dr. Hughes is the recipient of numerous awards including the state of Indiana Governor’s Distinguished Hoosier Award. She is a 2013 inductee into the Northwest Indiana Business & Industry Hall of Fame.

Story Posted:08/25/2021

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