november draft2023-11-02T15:22:14+00:00

We need your financial support for Health Legacy of Cleveland Inc.!!!

Give to Support Minority Future Physicians and Dentists Practicing in the Greater Cleveland Area


The End Of Year Is An Important Time For Giving

Meet the recipients of the Health Legacy of Cleveland Scholarship Awards for 2022-2023!

Featuring Jasmine Williams

Jasmine Williams currently is a 2nd year Medical Student at Meharry College. She is known for her strong leadership skills, professionalism, innovation and impeccable judgement. Being inquisitive and forward thinking, Jasmine is passionate about scientific discovery. These traits have served her well as a volunteer at the Cleveland Clinic Children Hospital. As a volunteer, Jasmine promoted health for children in her community and is committed to guiding health equity in marginalized communities. With Jasmine’s intellect, motivation, independence and innovation her teachers/mentors are confident that she will contribute to the mission of Health Legacy of Cleveland, Ohio Inc.

Jasmine shared that it was her own pediatrician that attracted her to the field of Medicine. Shadowing experiences and educational opportunities further strengthened her desire to become a physician. Also, her own family did not have access to major health/medical facilities in Twinsburg, Ohio.

Jasmine has held positions as a Medical Scribe, Patient Access Representative, Emergency Medical Technician and has served in the role of Patient Assistant. She is focused on serving the underserved populations in Northeast Ohio. She wants to work towards increasing minority physicians in Northeast Ohio. Also, Jasmine desires to assist with increasing preventative measures, with her goal being to improve health equity in the Greater Cleveland area and beyond.

Due to the pandemic, Jasmine stated that her first year of medical school was completely virtual. This challenge impacted her ability to explore various specialties through shadowing. Also, Jasmine focused on how the important connections with her classmates were limited as well.

Previously Featured Health Legacy of Cleveland Scholarship Recipients

Health Legacy Of Cleveland Scholarship Recipient Rebekah Russell Shares Her Journey On Becoming A Doctor During The Pandemic And How She Got Started With This Dream

I began my pursuit of medicine before the beginning of the 2019 pandemic, however the pandemic changed my experience during my first year of medical school. My first year of medical school was completely virtual which impacted my ability to explore various specialities through shadowing and my ability to make connections with classmates. Despite that experience, the pandemic reinforced the disparities faced by minority populations across the world. I became more empowered to focus my career on addressing the social and health inequity as a result of the pandemic. I have always wanted to be a physician and have never lost my interest despite facing obstacles. I think my initial interest came from my pediatrician who really demonstrated the importance of building relationships with your patients. Even though I was a child, I could feel that she was trustworthy and someone who would take care of me. My interest in medicine was further developed when I completed my 7th grade Body's System Project and could not stop talking about the brain [...]

May 27th, 2022|

Health Legacy Of Cleveland Scholarship Recipient Jennifer Ruffin Shares Her Story

“For any prospective Health Legacy Scholar, please do not give up on yourself or the dream that only you may be able to see at times.”  My journey in medicine has been a long, difficult and trying process. However, looking back I am so thankful for the life, education and experiences of struggle that challenged me.   As a native Clevelander, I am excited as a third-year osteopathic medical student to see the fruits of my labor finally take off.  I want to be part of the solution in bringing affordable preventative healthcare to Cleveland’s underserved communities. For any underrepresented minority, black or brown pre-medical student that is reading this, I say to you-You are so desperately needed in a profession where underrepresented physicians are difficult to come by. Where an entire hospital can be filled with physicians who don’t look or sound like you.  Please take advantage of any post baccalaureate, pre-matriculation and or master’s degree opportunity prior to medical school.  The knowledge you attain in these programs must be looked at as a stepping [...]

March 14th, 2022|

Health Legacy Scholarship Recipient – Christopher King

  Christopher King is a native of the Hough neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio. Christopher is a product of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District, being a graduate of Whitney Young and the School of Science and Medicine at John Hay. After graduating high school, Christopher matriculated to Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia. At Morehouse, Christopher majored in Biology and started his journey to Dentistry. During his freshman year Christopher participated in the Summer Medical and Dental Education Program at the University of California- Los Angeles. During this program Chris learned how Public Health and Dentistry intertwine and how a Dentist can maximize their reach to underrepresented populations that need care.  Upon returning to Morehouse, Christopher solidified his career choice and joined the Executive Boards of the Health Careers Society, Atlanta University Center Public Health Institute, and participated in other experiences to grow in leadership and to give back to the community through service projects. While building his experiences and resume, Christopher graduated from Morehouse College in 2016 with Cum Laude honors, but still did not feel [...]

February 15th, 2022|

End Of Year Is An Important Time For Fundraising!

Health Legacy of Cleveland Scholarship Awards for School Year 2022-2023:

Christopher King $ 3,500. Meharry College of Dentistry 4th Year (Renewal Scholarship)

Jennifer Ruffin $3,500. Ohio University Medical School 4th Year (Renewal Scholarship)

Rebekah Russell $2,000. Case Western Reserve School of Medicine 3rd Year (Renewal Scholarship

Jasmine Williams $1,000. Meharry Medical College 2nd Year (New Scholarship)

Total Awards= $10,000.

Health Legacy of Cleveland has been committed to bridging the gap of healthcare disparities for well over 25 years. For the past two and a half years, the pandemic has illuminated the myriad of health disparities for minorities. Because of the economic and social landscape of this country it has been reported by the Centers for Disease Control and others, that African-Americans with asthma, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes were at a greater risk than other populations for contracting Coronavirus. Furthermore, minorities are more at risk for suffering from more serious complications from Coronavirus.

The Association of American Medical Colleges and others document that about 5 percent of practicing physicians in the U.S. are black. Health Legacy of Cleveland’s mission becomes even more pressing, since the Association of American Medical Colleges data shows that black patients have better outcomes when treated by black doctors.

According to the Cleveland Council of Black Colleges Alumni Association more than 70 percent of African American dentists and physicians earned degrees at HBCUs . Therefore, according to Dr. Bessie House-Soremekun-President/Chairperson of Health Legacy of Cleveland, Ohio Inc. and the Board Members… it is imperative that more funds are raised to provide scholarships and mentoring for student doctors and dentists to bring more of them into the “Cleveland Healthcare Corridors” to better manage the healthcare of minorities.

Board Members and Executive Officers

2022 Board Members

Karen Ashby, MD

Billy Brown, MD

Cordelia G. Harris, PhD

Liz Hilton, Esq

Bessie House-Soremekun, PhD

Andre Mickle, DDS, MSD

Charles Modlin MD

Maposure T. Miller, DDS

Lateef Saffore, PhD

Maurice Soremekun, MD

Giesele Robinson Greene, MD…..Board Member Emeritus

September 2022

Board of Director’s Recognition Dinner

Zanzibar Restaurant July 27, 2022 6:30 p.m.

Summary of Dr. Bessie House-Soremekun’s Tribute for the Health Legacy of Cleveland’s  Recognition Dinner 

The formal part of the Health Legacy Awards Dinner involves the presentation of individual plaques to Board Members for their tremendous commitment to service. Throughout the 25 years of history of Health Legacy of Cleveland, a great deal of time has been spent thanking our external supporters and members of the broader community. We have spent less time thanking our talented board members, who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure that we continue to achieve our goals. Tonight, our spotlight will be on these individuals who have helped Health Legacy of Cleveland to make an important impact in the broader community.


“As President/ Chairperson of Health Legacy of Cleveland it gives me great pride to present our awards to our distinguished honorees this evening.”  These individuals have supported our organization and their peers. They also demonstrate a high level of commitment to Health Legacy and to the spirit of volunteerism. They are model citizens and true role models for our future leaders of America.

Our first award recipient is Dr. Billy Brown, MD. (Internal Medicine)

Dr. Brown is a very important awardee. He is one of the founding members of Health Legacy of Cleveland Inc. He is also the first President of Health Legacy of Cleveland. Like all board members, he has participated in many fundraising galas. He has worked with the Membership Committee for several years as well. He specializes in Internal Medicine. He has had a longstanding Medical Practice with Huron Road Hospital of over 30 years and more recently with the Cleveland Clinic. Online sources document that he provided over 45 years of service to Greater Cleveland.

Our second award recipient this evening is Dr. Andre Mickle, (Endodontist)

He is the Past President of Health Legacy of Cleveland, Inc.He is wonderful fundraiser and a big supporter of Health Legacy of Cleveland Scholarships. Dr. Mickle has served as President of prestigious College of Diplomates of American Board of Endodontics. He has been selected by the Cleveland Magazine as one of Cleveland’s most “Interesting People” for his innovative clinical relaxation techniques to reduce root canal patients’ anxiety and perception of pain. Dr Mickle has served on the Board of Directors of the Greater Cleveland Dental Society of CWRU School of Dental Alumni Association. Additionally, he has served in the following roles: Past President of Ohio Association of Endodontists, Chairman of CWRU Dental Alumni Association, Program, (Case Western Reserve University). He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.

Our third award recipient is Dr. Lateef Saffore

Dr. Lateef Saffore is the Immediate Past President of Health Legacy of Cleveland. He served as President during a time following a national and global decline where funds had to raise funds to stabilize Health Legacy of Cleveland by administering the sale of the HLC Art collection with Dr. Maposure Miller (also a founding Board Member). Dr. Saffore was very instrumental in using his leadership skills to ensure the continued support of our current and new president of Health Legacy of Cleveland, Dr. Bessie House-Soremekun. He served as the Lead Research Scientist at Lerner Research Institute from 2001-2006 and as Senior Scientist and Research Administrator for the Cleveland Clinic Foundation from 2001-2017. He is an Executive, Business Owner, Scientist, Inventor, Project Manager, and Critical thinker. He has worked with hospitals, federal agencies, and grassroots organizations to develop and implement important public policies. He is a Member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.

Our fourth Award Recipient is Dr. Roderick Adams. (DDS)

He currently serves as the Treasurer of Health Legacy of Cleveland and he has been a member of the Board of Directors for many years. He is also a great parliamentarian for our organization. He won the Ohio Dental Association Leadership Pin award in 2018 for being active in councils and committees at all levels of the tripartite for many years, including having served as Chair of the Ohio Dental Association’s Council on Access to Care and Public Service, Credentials, Rules and Order Committee and the Subcommittee on Judicial Affairs, and as a member of the Ad interim Committee. Dr. Adams sets a powerful message to encourages others to take action. He has further been very active at The Historic Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Cleveland, Ohio for many years where he serves as the Senior Warden. He is also a valued member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. and the Reynards Social Group, (An organization of distinguished Black professional men).

Our fifth award recipient is Dr. Cordelia Harris.

Dr. Cordelia G. Harris is the Vice-President/Assistant Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Health Legacy of Cleveland Inc. She has been an active member for over 25 years. Dr. Harris has provided leadership for our scholarship process, fundraising and Website. For the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. She is a former High School Principal, former Director of Health and Physical, a former Director of Human Resources and a Health and Physical Education Teacher. She enjoys continuing her affiliation with The Historic Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Cleveland where she founded the Praise Dance Group. And now as a resident of Bowie, Maryland, she is an Altar Counselor for First Baptist Church of Glenarden. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

Our Sixth Award Recipient is Dr. Maurice Soremekun- (Obstetrician/Gynecologist)

Dr. Maurice Soremekun has been a member of HLC for several years. He has generously supported our scholarship campaign through the years. He is a Board Certified Obstetrician/Gynecologist who is the President and CEO of Women’s Health Care, Inc., a facility dedicated to providing high quality health care services to women. He was the former Director of In-Patient Maternity Services, Director of Adolescent Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Chief of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Kaiser Permanente Medical Center of Cleveland, Ohio.He was formerly the Lead Physician at The Otis Moss Center of the University Hospital of Cleveland. He belongs to many professional organizations and has held many leadership Positions, which include serving as the President of the Cleveland Medical Association, the President of the Cleveland Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and the President of the Nigerian Community of Greater Cleveland on 2 separate occasions. He is a member of Trinity Methodist Church, is a Knight of John Wesley, one of the highest honors bestowed by the Methodist Church on its parishioners, and he is also a member of the Reynards Social Group.

Award for Dr. Bessie House-Soremekun Presented by Dr. Cordelia G. Harris

Our last award recipient this evening is none other than our esteemed Health Legacy of Cleveland President and Chair of the Board of Directors, Dr. Bessie House-Soremekun

  • Dr. Bessie House-Soremekun has been a board member of Health Legacy of Cleveland for more than 15 years.
  • She has served as Chair of the Development Committee and has also supported our scholarship campaign.
  • She began her term as President and Chair of the Board of Directors of Health Legacy of Cleveland in January 2021.
  • While serving as President of HLC, she has provided visionary leadership for the development of a new 5-year strategic plan which has outlined a number of new initiatives that will extend the work of HLC further into the 21st century.
  • The Strategic Plan also supports the expanded mission of Health Legacy of Cleveland to also include more engagement and dissemination of information about health care issues, disease prevention, and health care provision to the broader Cleveland community.
  • She is an internationally recognized scholar, professor, award-winning author, administrator, inventor, and entrepreneur.
  • Last month, the Provost of Jackson State University, appointed her to serve as the new Interim Dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Jackson State University. She previously served as the Associate Dean in the College and as the Interim Chair of the Department of Political Science.
  • The College of Liberal Arts is one of the largest colleges on the campus with many faculty, staff, and students.

Her critically acclaimed 7th book, Yoruba Creativity: Cultural Practices of the Modern World, was recently published by Carolina Academic Press. I intend to purchase a copy of the book tonight and books will be available for those who wish to acquire a copy.

Other Award Recipients who are unable to be here with us tonight, will be presented their awards at later date…

They include: Dr. Karen Ashby, Secretary of HLC; Attorney Elizabeth Hilton an(d Dr. Maposure Miller (Founding Board Member) and Dr.Charles Modlin. Also in our Emeritus Catergory: Dr. Giesele R.Greene (Founding Board Member) and Dr. Gus Kious.

Health Legacy of Cleveland Inc. would also like to acknowledge Dr. Oscar Saffold as one of the Founding Members of HLC and Cynthia Clark MA as Immediate Past Executive Director of HLC.

2022 Executive Officers










Spotlight on Dr. Billy Brown

Billy Brown enthusiastically practiced Internal Medicine in the African-American community for over 35 years before retiring. He chose to maintain a practice in East Cleveland while serving as a member of the medical staff at Huron Hospital, a Cleveland Clinic Hospital. Dr. Brown was elected by his peers to serve as Chief of Staff of Huron Hospital from 2000-2002.

As an internist, Dr. Brown had special interests in the care of patients with diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease and HIV infections, diseases that have disproportionately affected African-American and other minorities.

As Chief of Staff, Dr. Billy Brown felt that the mission of a community hospital was to take care of social and healthcare issues facing families and communities. Assuming a leadership position allowed him the opportunity to be an advocate for programs that impact those who had the least.

Dr. Brown has been an active member of Health Legacy of Cleveland Inc. for many years (which is a mentoring/scholarship program for minority students wishing to become a doctor or allied healthcare professional). He is a founding member of Health Legacy of Cleveland and is the first President of Health Legacy of Cleveland. He has also worked with the Membership Committee of Health legacy for years. Dr. Brown has been known for his humor and wit, which has always been a valuable asset for Health Legacy of Cleveland Inc.

He served as Medical Director for Fairfax Place and Candlewood Park Nursing Homes, which care for our elderly citizens. He has served as Clinical Instructor of Medicine at Case Western University School of Medicine and has been included in the teaching of medical students and continuing education of doctors, nursing and other health care providers.

Dr. Billy Brown received his Bachelor of Science Degree with Honors from Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He holds a Master of Arts Degree from Harvard University and was awarded his Doctor of Medicine Degree from Case Western Reserve University. He completed his residency at Metro Health Medical Center in Cleveland. Dr. Brown has served as Pasts President for the Cleveland Medical Association (Local Chapter of the National Medical Association). He is also a Member of the Association of Black Cardiologists.

Dr. Brown is highly respected by the Cleveland Medical Community and his former patience.He now resides in East Cleveland as a widower.He is proud of his adult children.One is a Medical Doctor, one has a Law degreeand one is in the business world with an MBA degree.

Previously Featured Health Legacy of Cleveland Board Member

Honoring Board Member Dr. Andre K. Mickel

Health Legacy of Cleveland  is proud to highlight Dr. Andre K. Mickel as an outstanding Board Member.  He has been one of the pillars of Health Legacy for over 20 years.  He has given his time and talent richly to our organization. It is no secret that Dr. . Andre K. Mickel is a leading Endodontist in Cleveland specializing in the most difficult and highly complex root canal cases. When he is not treating patients in the office, Dr. Mickel serves as the head of the  Endodontics Department at the highly regarded Case Western Reserve School of Medicine.. He [...]

April 19th, 2022|

Recognizing Dr. Charles Modlin – One Of Our Own Health Legacy Of Cleveland, Ohio Board Member

This month, Health Legacy of Cleveland is proud to recognize one of our long serving Board Members, Charles Modlin, MD.  He has had a brilliant career in the medical field, bridging the health disparity gap for minorities.  Recently, he has joined MetroHealth after more than three decades at the Cleveland Clinic, where he was Executive Director of Minority Health. Dr. Modlin is MetroHealth’s first Medical Director for Inclusion, Diversity and Equity.  In this role, he is part of the leadership team for diversity working with Chief Equity Officer, Alan Nievel. He is also maintaining a urology practice. At the Cleveland Clinic, Dr. Modlin [...]

December 29th, 2021|

Previously Featured Monthly Health Targets

September is Health Awareness Month

Continue To Get The Shot/safety Around Back To School! September is a month dedicated to impacting many health challenges: Everyone should continue getting vaccinated and getting booster shots to prevent the Coronavirus. The American Cancer recognizes the month of September as prevention month for the below diseases: Childhood Cancer, Ovarian [...]

November 14th, 2022|

June is Men’s Health Month

Men… Take Control of Your Health …Get Screened! According to Cleveland Clinic…for many reasons, men are much less likely than women to seek medical care, sometimes causing harmful delays in diagnosis and treatment. Many of the major health risks that men face, like diabetes, prostate cancer or heart [...]

May 28th, 2022|

February Is Heart Month

  Health Legacy of Cleveland encourages you to: Be more vigilant than ever about your overall health during the pandemic.  Take up heart-healthy habits like staying active by increasing your daily steps (if medically possible).  Avoid overeating, which can be challenging for people that find themselves working from home.   Eating [...]

February 15th, 2022|

Health Legacy Of Cleveland Wants You To… Get The Shots!!!

According to CDC -"Saving Lives": "Protecting People" Dec. 20, 2021 We have the Tools to Fight Omicron Vaccines Vaccines remain the best public health measure to protect people from COVID-19, slow transmission, and reduce the likelihood of new variants emerging. COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective at preventing severe illness, [...]

December 29th, 2021|

Or Mail your check to:

Health Legacy of Cleveland

PO Box 201519

Shaker Heights, Ohio 44120 (enclose email address)

Special Acknowledgements for Homepage Updates:
*Dr. Cordelia G. Harris
*Support Team from MoDuet


Phone 216.621.1933


PO Box 201519

Shaker Heights, OH 44120-8108


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