Smart Living Awards Flashback 2013: Danny Williams

The Judson Smart Living Awards honor individuals of all ages dedicated to the dynamic atmosphere of University Circle. Nominations are now open for the class of 2014 in the categories of arts, education, volunteerism, philanthropy and healthcare. Deadline is March 24, 2014.

Do you know someone who qualifies to be a 2014 Judson Smart Living Award winner? Submit your nomination today!

A trained advocate and a believer in justice for all, Danny Williams’ mantra is to improve the quality of life for every person. As executive director of The Free Medical Clinic of Cleveland, he brings his attorney background and deep expertise driving non-profits toward success to forward the Free Clinic’s two-fold mission: To provide free medical and related services to people without other alternatives; and to advocate for policy changes to make health care accessible to everyone.

“We’ll help people who come through our doors, and we also want to change the system,” sums up Williams, who took over leadership at the Free Clinic in 2006. Prior to that, Williams was executive director of the Cuyahoga County office of the American Cancer Society (ACS), and helped open the Joseph S. and Jeannette M. Silber Hope Lodge, a no-cost temporary place to stay for adult cancer patients and their families who travel to Cleveland for treatment.

During his time at ACS, Williams also relocated its headquarters to University Circle in a new facility at the intersection of East 105th Street and Euclid Avenue. “If we were going to claim that our priority was to help the underserved community, then we needed to be where the people are,” he says.

“I’m taking everything I’ve learned as an advocate and pointing that at trying to provide core services to historically underserved communities,” says Williams, who was former Mayor Michael White’s law director.

At The Free Clinic, Williams is driving advocacy issues by starting conversations in the community about health care accessibility and the relationship between wellness and economic development. This year, the Clinic will hold its second forum, Economic Development: What’s Health Got to Do With It? “The goal is to gather those unusual suspects-the business community and policymakers-to get them to think about economic development in a different, broader way,” William says.

Do you know someone who qualifies to be a 2014 Judson Smart Living Award winner? Submit your nomination today!

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