International Women’s Day, March 8th, is a day designed to celebrate women across the globe, recognizing their social, economic, cultural and political achievements while brining awareness for women’s equality. In 1911, International Women’s Day was recognized for the first time in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. It wasn’t until 1975 that International Women’s Day was celebrated for the first time by the United Nations. 2011 marked the 100 year anniversary of the first IWD. In 2011 in the U.S., President Obama proclaimed March to be Women’s History Month. Since then there have been many charities and organizations developed across the world to support women and IWD each year. To learn about the full history of International Women’s Day, please visit the history page of the International Women’s Day website.
At StayWell we have so many talented, strong women who impact the lives of so many on a daily basis. This year we’re highlighting two of those women who have been an integral part of StayWell.
For over 20 years, Miriam Lopez has been a noteworthy role model and leader at StayWell Health Center serving in various capacities. She’s played a major role in the growth of the center since her start as a Data Entry Specialist in the Healthy Start Program to her current role as the Director of Clinical Operations to Medical & Behavioral Health.
As Director, she consistently oversees many of the clinical departments daily internal activities to ensure compliance and productive workflow, directs clinical and administrative staff on new initiatives and coordinates external vendor relationships. Miriam strives daily to cultivate an environment where staff, providers and patients have access to necessary items. She’s garnered thousands of dollars’ worth of medical supplies, vaccines, and personal care items for patients and community members alike, at no cost, amongst other achievements. As a full-time parent “I know first-hand what our communities struggle with, the majority of it has to do with basic access to the things they need”, she says.
When asked what drives her to help those in need – “Besides my daughters, well, I often remember early on in my career the families that were on my caseload, one in particular who is now a successful social worker. When I met her, she was a single mom who did not have what she needed to support her family. I helped her navigate the healthcare system and connect her with community resources.”
Miriam is an alumnus of the first Graduating class of the Parent Leadership Training Institute (PLTI), where she attributes her public speaking and advocacy skills. Miriam is known for her approach to solving challenges, assessing issues and providing solutions, and understanding the role our personal lives play in our overall health. “My office has always been the place where people can come and share their struggles, I hope to continue to be that place.”
We asked Miriam what advice she would give to aspiring leaders. She responded, “Don’t give up, you’ll find obstacles in your path but don’t get discouraged, focus on your goal and where you want to be and look at the positive side of every situation.”
Amongst her professional accomplishments, Miriam is most proud of being a new grandma, raising two successful daughters and a mischievous Maltese, named Tyson.
Monika Mishra, MD
Monika joined StayWell Health Center in 2018 after completing her degree from St. Vincent’s Medical Center, Bridgeport, CT.
She received her medical degree from India where she graduated top of her university. During her medical school years, she was active in various community outreach programs, including vaccinations drives, school health programs and health camps for remote locations. This definitely played a hand in shaping her interest in primary care from early on.
Even now, she truly enjoys interacting with people, observing and learning their ways and beliefs. Having practiced medicine in two different countries with such a variation in cultures has been an enriching experience. Monika tries to help her patients understand medicine and health while respecting their beliefs. She still volunteers when possible through community health programs during residency and vaccine clinics at StayWell.
“I feel effective primary care should focus on the importance of care as well as the cure.” she told us, “I have a toddler who keeps me on my toes all the time and as an avid traveler, I love researching different cuisines or restaurants and will always have a recommendation ready!”
When Monika is not taking care of patients at StayWell or chasing her toddler around, she spends her free time cooking, exploring places, reading and photography.
While we have only highlighted two of our talented women, we have many more women who have made an impact on the lives of our patients and to StayWell. Check out last years blog to learn about who we highlighted last year!
Marketing & Communications Manager
StayWell Health Center