Hope & Care Awards: Recognizing your peers in the community.

As Community Health Workers, we’re doing hard work on the frontlines in our community, serving as trusted advocates for empowerment and social justice. That’s why NACHW wants to recognize exemplary efforts in our first annual Hope & Care Awards, to be presented live at the virtual July 28 – 29, 2021 Unity Conference event.

As the eyes and ears of our national organization, we’re counting on you to share the stories of the CHWs you know going above and beyond. All nominees will be recognized at the event and possibly featured in our social media.

Please fill out the nomination form below by July 16th, 2021!

The Esther M. Holderby Extraordinary CHW Award honors mid-career (7 or more) CHW, CHR or promotor(a) who has overcome personal adversity to promote health in their community. In addition to promoting health in his or her community, the recipient of the award will have advocated for funding and/or services needed in their community to promote health. The recipient does not need to work in cancer education or prevention.


Ms. Holderby was a 4-time, 25- year cancer survivor and a dedicated CHW. She lost her battle with breast cancer in 2005. Until shortly before her passing, Esther continued to educate men and women about the importance of early detection. Ms. Holderby was passionate about reaching as many community members as possible. She was a celebrity on local television and radio broadcast taking every possible opportunity to educate the community. Additionally, she advocated for sustainable funding for CHWs and public health as an active member of the Massachusetts Association of Community Health Workers and the Massachusetts Public Health Association.


The Esther M. Holderby Extraordinary CHW Award, formally known as the Esther M. Holderby Dedicated CHW was established by the Holderby family in 2006. Since establishing the award, a CHW has been honored each year at the Unity Conference. Unity was an important event in Esther’s life. She described Unity as a “family reunion” after attending her first conference. She also presented at Unity several times, often with her daughter, Lisa Renee.


The recipient of the receives a recognition award, certificate, and a 1-year CHW NACHW membership. The award, certificate and membership are provided by the Holderby Family in memory of Esther.


Award Criteria

  1. Be a community health worker, community health representative or promotor(a) de salud.
  2. Have at least 7 years’ experience as a CHW, CHR or promotor(a) de salud.
  3. Have made a significant contribution to community health.
  4. Be an advocate for the community served.
  5. Be active in local, state, or national CHW, CHR or promotor(a) de salud organizations or groups.


Selection Process

The selection committee is comprised of members of the Holderby family and others who knew Esther Holderby.  The committee is chaired by Carley M. Desillier, Esther’s granddaughter. Please send any questions to emh.chw.award@gmail.com, subject: Extraordinary CHW.

For 2021, NACHW is also proud to honor four CHWs within our mission to unify the voices of the community health workers and strengthen the profession’s capacity to promote healthy communities. We invite our CHWs, partners and allies to nominate any and all deserving CHWs who embody our organizational values of self empowerment, social justice and equality, self-determination, dignity and respect, unity and integrity under these award categories: