WHA Milestones

We've come this far by faith.

  • Jacqueline Reed, Founder, President and CEO of Westside Health Authority retired.

  • The Board of Directors selected Morris Reed, Esq. to head WHA as its second Chief Executive Officer. Before his selection as a CEO, Morris Reed had served as WHA's Director of Finance.
  • Acquired and rehabbed three family homes and 2 two-flat apartment buildings to be put back on the market and sold.

  • Formed the Coalition to Save Community Banking. The coalition to Save Community Banking forged a $2.4 million agreement with US Bank to address the housing foreclosure crisis. WHA is the financial steward of the gift.

  • Created 1,100 subsidized employment opportunities for men through the Put Illinois to Work (PITW) initiative.

  • Provided training and permanent employment in the construction trade for ten Austin residents.
  • Opened the Community Fitness Center at Austin Town Hall.

  • Placed over 2,000 youth in summer employment opportunities.

  • NSP and WHA purchased four houses and rehabbed a six unit apartment building, revitalizing an entire block in the North Lawndale community.

  • Organized the Austin Community Education Network to advocate for improvement of schools on Chicago's west side.
  • Served as fiscal agent for Governor Blagojevich's Summer Youth Program, where over 10,000 low income youth aged 13-22 were placed in summer employment. 
  • Launched the Austin Safety Net Works on youth violence. 

  • Prisoner Re-Entry Services placed 194 customers in employment during the first 6 months of 2008, of which 152 are ex-offenders. This includes 39 job placements into WHA's Transitional Jobs Program. 
  • Grand Opening of the Business & Human Resources Center (BHRC). 

  • First cycle of the Kraft Healthy Living Initiative sessions commenced. 
  • Opened Community Re-Entry Center through grant from Mayor's Office of Prisoner Re-Entry, one of only two centers in the City of Chicago.  
  • Community Support Advisory Council (CSAC), a capacity-building initiative to support prisoner re-entry, was created by WHA, now being used as a national model.
  • Austin Wellness Center completed.  Expanded the services of the Austin Cook County Health Center to provide primary care.
  • Implemented the first youth baseball league in Austin.
  • Hired youth and adults to do lead sampling in Austin homes.  Austin has the highest incidence of lead poisoning.  Over 350 homes were tested.
  • Began the Austin Wellness Center capital campaign.
  • Received U.S. Department of Health and Human Services "Models that Work" award for equipping 68 EBV homes with Internet access.
  • Implemented Every Block A Village (EBV), an initiative that builds relationships between neighbors. 
  • Assisted neighborhood businesses in obtaining contracts with local businesses, hospitals, and city.  Through this project, an Austin resident received $500,000 transportation contract; total program contracts totaled nearly $5 million.
  • Implemented research project to train 30 community residents to conduct surveys in 314 Austin homes.
  • Placed 290 Youth in health careers; program model still exists in Chicago Public Schools.
  • WHA Founded by Jacqueline Reed, President / CEO

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