Jerry Isikoff, PhD
Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Jerry Isikoff has a background in clinical psychology that includes more than four decades of providing and advocating for mental health services to children and adults. He received his PH.D. in Clinical Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology.
He is a senior-level executive with expertise in non-profit developments, strategic planning, successful multi-disciplinary team management, and project delivery. In the 1980s, he created the 1-800 number for Humana, which assisted in decreasing patient complaints and increased access to triage, demonstrating his passion for creating positive customer experience while serving cultural and linguistically diverse populations.
Dr. Isikoff began his formal appointment as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) on August 15, 2018. He has served in several roles at Angel Harvey Family Health Center (IWS) and while doing so, brought about many integral enhancements that have added to the organization’s longstanding history. Dr. Isikoff has an exceptional ability to foster a cohesive work environment, interface with public agencies, and liaise with key stakeholders. He has displayed an unwavering commitment to the community and continues to lead IWS into the future
Read more about Dr. Isikoff’s experiences and achievements here. Read More
Paola Portela, MD
Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Portela is a Board Certified pediatrician and a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. She graduated from Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago with a Bachelor of Science and a minor in Sociology. After college, she worked as a case manager at Casa Central in Humboldt Park. Soon after she graduated with honors from Ross University School of Medicine and a Masters in Healthcare Administration from National Louis University.
Dr. Portela completed her residency in pediatrics at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Her special interests are in areas of high-risk pediatric patients: newborns, obesity, nutrition, and asthma/allergy illnesses.
Dr. Portela was born in Colombia, South America and raised in Logan Square. She is bilingual and understands the multicultural facets of society to medicine. Her special interests are in areas of high-risk pediatric patients: newborns, obesity, nutrition, and asthma/allergy illnesses.
Dr. Portela has been an enthusiastic and dedicated member of the Angel Harvey Family Health Center team since her arrival in 2017. She exudes dedication and leads by example in her role as Chief Medical Officer and brings the same vigor and energy to her leadership as she is a provider and leader of our Comer Sano/Eat Healthy group.
Read more about Dr. Portela here. Read More
Karen Williams, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
Karen Williams is a Certified Public Accountant. She received her Bachelor of Science from Northern Illinois University in accounting in 1983. Working with several large corporations she gained extensive experience and expertise in accounting with over three decades of financial knowledge.
Her widespread experience with nonprofits has made her an ideal fit for Angel Harvey Family Health Center (IWS). She accepted the role of Chief Financial Officer (CFO) with IWS on September 10, 2018. Since then, she has been a financial executive who can seamlessly shift gears to also assist to help lead IWS through evolving times. Karen has prided herself on upkeeping her integrity in such an integral role.
Forward-facing, Karen’s future endeavor for IWS is to ensure that she preserves the financial risks management. Her substantial participation and encounter with FQHC’s have assisted IWS in modeling the criterion to prepare us for success for the next 100 yrs.
Chief Operating Officer
Prior to rising up the ranks at Angel Harvey Family Health Center (IWS), Denise committed 13 years to public service for the Department of Public Health where she ultimately became the Clinic Manager for the Uptown Neighborhood Health Center where she was responsible for an FQHC look-alike health center with over 20,000 annual patient visits.
Denise has an extensive background in health IT, Instrumental in leading EMR lunches for both the Chicago Department of Public Health and IWS. She has received certified leadership training, training on National Incident Management Systems, and ongoing participation in safety net COO-CMO Discussion and networking groups. Denise Gonzalez accepted the role as the Chief Operating Officer (COO) on July 1, 2019. She has served in multiple roles with IWS over the last 7 years and has furthered her commitment by stepping into the role as the COO.
Denise started out as a patient of Angel Harvey Family Health Center and her commitment to bridge the gap between communication barriers and affordable, efficient, holistic, quality care drove her passion to reinvest into the same community from which she comes. During her tenure, she has championed balance to meet the operational needs and enriching the staff. She has spearheaded the task of cross-training staff to increase their skill-based knowledge and such programming has been the reason behind the success in the organization’s high internal growth, employee engagement, and retention. As IWS continues to embark on growth, Denise plans to focus her initiatives on maintaining the significance of supporting the employees in the workplace to stimulate quality patient care.
Chief Healthcare Analytics Information Officer
Jose Galarza serves as the Chief Healthcare Analytics Officer for Angel Harvey Family Health Center (IWS). Prior to joining the team at IWS, Jose worked with Joint Commission as a Written Report Analyst for 9 years where he recognized his passion for data analytics.
Earlier on Jose served for 16 years in the United States Army. During his time of active duty, he went on to obtain his Associates Degree in System Network and Computer Information. Jose continued his education at Rochville University. He is currently enrolled at Grantham University where he will receive his Bachelor of Science in Health Informatics.
Jose started with IWS in 2011 as the Director of Revenue Cycle. During his first year, he was able to get IWS’ Behavioral Health Services enrolled to bill for services under Medicaid rule 132. Jose’s analytic skill set allowed him to implement innovative processes and procedures to maximize revenue at IWS. In his efforts, his department revamped the credentialing process for providers which now allows them to have the ability to bill a multitude of insurances. This initiative has made it possible for IWS providers to increase the demographic population that we are now able to serve. Jose’s ongoing passion to always find a way is the determination IWS needs for many years to come.
Michelle Di Benedetto, MA
Vice President of Institutional Advancement
At IWS, Michelle leads the department responsible for fund development, communications, marketing, outreach and community relations. Before coming to IWS, she was the Programs and Development Director for the Kellogg Fellows Leadership Alliance, where she was responsible for the fund development program and shared responsibility for programs, including a national initiative supporting community level gatherings on equity and healing.
She has a MA in Human Rights and Global Health from the University of Denver’s Korbel School of International Studies and a BA in International Studies with minors in Commercial Italian and French.
Sheila Hall, DDS
Vice President of Dental Services
Dr. Hall joined Infant Welfare in 1989 and has been the full-time Dental Director since 2006. Dr. Hall received her Doctor or Dental Surgery degree at Loyola University’s School of Dentistry and is board certified in Pediatric Dentistry.
Milagros Fernandez, LCSW
Vice President of Family Services
Milagros Fernandez, LCSW, is the Vice President of Family Services, which includes the Infant Welfare Society of Chicago Child and Adolescent Counseling Services (CACS) program and the Probation Department counseling activities, Behavioral Health Integrated Care (BHIC), and the Child-centered Health & Advanced Therapies (CHAT). Ms. Fernandez possesses over 20 years of experience in clinical social work in the areas of community mental health and child welfare. Fluent in Spanish and English, she graduated from the University of Chicago with a Masters in Social Work in 1994 and received the Infant Mental Health Certificate from the Erikson Institute in 2010.
Candice Collier, MHRM, MPA
Director of Human Resources
Candice Collier, MHRM, MPA, is the Director of Human Resources at the Infant Welfare Society of Chicago. She has 9 years of human resources experience with an expertise in performance management, succession planning and process improvement. Since joining IWS, she has prided herself on reinforcing all initiatives that engage, uplifts, supports, and empowers all the staff of IWS.
Jennifer Morrison, CPNP, MPH
Director of Clinical Quality Management
Jennifer Morrison holds a Masters of Science in Nursing and a Masters in Public Health from Johns Hopkins University, specializing in Maternal and Child Health. She has a Bachelor of Science, Pre-Medicine, and Spanish from the University of Norte Dame and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Loyola University. She is also a board-certified pediatric nurse practitioner. Nurse Morrison is bi-lingual in English and Spanish.
Executive Assistant and Procurement Officer
Director of Revenue Cycle
Ms. Finch is a dynamic professional with over thirty years of experience with strategic alignment of financial and information technologies with corporate goals in both non-profit and for-profit sectors, including healthcare, social services, property management, education, distribution, and manufacturing segments.
Currently, she is the Director of Revenue Cycle at the Angel Harvey Family Health Center of the Infant Welfare Society in Chicago. Being at IWS allows her to pursue her passion for the equitable distribution of public health resources to otherwise underserved communities and learn Spanish. Ms. Finch is a graduate of Ohio State University and an active member of several civic and professional organizations including Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Alpha Gamma Pi Sorority, Inc.
Director of Operations
As a teenager, Karina volunteered at the Department of Public Health clinics where she developed an interest in public health management. She began working at Angel Harvey in 2012 as a Patient Support Specialist and has since moved up in the organization to become the Director of Operations. Her ability to manage staff, assist patients, and simultaneously maintain the high standards of public health management and quality has helped IWS to provide exceptional patient care and respond to the quick and often changing needs of our population. Karina hopes to continue servicing and helping the community that she holds dear to her heart.
Board of Directors
Edward D. Rickert President
Elizabeth Hennessy Treasurer
Carolyn Clift Secretary
Timothy B. Johnson Investments Chair
Tomitra Latimer, MD Quality Assurance Chair
Jose Alvarez Board Developement Chair>
Patricia Ritsman Finance Chair
Claire M. Bennett
Lynda K. Given
Richard D. Raskin
Michael W. Davis
Kathleen K. DeVine
Kathleen M. Ferket
Kristin V. MacRAE
Martin J. McHale
Steven R. Rothbloom
Pat Pulido Sanchez
K. Sue Sanford
James H. Stacke
Benjamin E. Wolff, III
JoEllen Bursinger Zacks
Sharon Smith Co-President
Lynda Given Co-President
Lisa Haines 1st Vice President
Maria Enright 2nd Vice President
Sara DeKuiper 3rd Vice President
Elizabeth Berglund Tresurer
Arlene Simunek Recording Secretary
Jennifer Mower Corresponding Secretary
Bryan C. Cressey
Nathan P. Eimer
John W. Stimpson
John P. Volkman