About Us 



Our Mission


To eliminate health disparities through recruiting, training, sustaining and supporting health professionals from diverse backgrounds, community engagement, and advocacy.

Our History

The federal Area Health Education Center (AHEC) Program was established in 1973 as a way to encourage medical schools to increase the number of students and residents trained in rural communities. The Connecticut AHEC Program was established in 1995 by the Connecticut General Assembly and received initial federal funding in 1997. The program is based at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine in Farmington and implemented by regional AHECs with offices in Waterbury, Hartford, Bridgeport, Willimantic and Norwich.

Health Education Center Today

The Health Education Center (HEC) has continued the AHEC programs for eastern Connecticut, but has expanded to include many more programs and trainings that educate community members on health information and healthcare career building opportunities.  HEC is focused on working to reduce health disparities and reflects that in each program.

Meet Our Team

Kelsey Holmes
Kelsey HolmesPresident
Cherie Poirier
Cherie PoirierDirector of Development and Marketing
Alyssa McClain
Alyssa McClainArea Health Education Center Director
Rashawn Hughes
Rashawn HughesDirector of Training and Workforce Development
Randi Matzenbacher
Randi MatzenbacherTraining Coordinator
Emilia Triay
Emilia TriayProgram Coordinator
Leyanna Minnis
Leyanna MinnisProgram and Data Assistant
Margaret Twum
Margaret TwumBE THE CHANGE Coordinator

Meet Our Board of Directors

Stephen Smith, MD, MPH

Board Chairman
Physician, Community Health Center, Inc.
Professor Emeritus of Family Medicine,
Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University

Laurie Herring
Board Vice-Chairwoman
Chief Operations and Quality Officer
The Arc Eastern Connecticut

Glorimar Anderson, LCSW
Behavioral Health Clinician
Community Health Center, Inc.

Stephanye Clarke
Program Officer
Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut
Setu Vora, MD
Chief Medical Officer
Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation

Scott Kadey
Chief Information Officer
The Arc Eastern Connecticut

Joseph Zuzel
Manager Community Health for
Eastern Region of Hartford Healthcare

Debbie Phillips
Community Activist and Volunteer 

55 Main Street, Ste 270
Norwich, CT 06360
P: (860) 465-8281
F: (860) 760-6230