Brenda Reyes, RN, CLC, a well-respected and knowledgeable breastfeeding advocate, trains breastfeeding peer counselors and front-line staff at health and social service agencies, presents workshops for WIC and MCH case management staff, and collaborates with a variety of partner agencies to provide effective and engaging peer counseling services for breastfeeding women — not only in Chicago, but throughout the U.S.
Ms. Reyes manages partner relationships, creates tools for reporting and evaluation, and works with the HC One program team to develop goals and monitor progress. She also develops systems to monitor program finances and contracts.
Ms. Reyes began her work with HC One as the Peer Counselor Program Coordinator in 2001, designing and delivering training for breastfeeding peer counselors in underserved and economically disadvantage neighborhoods across Illinois. Prior to that, she was trained as a peer counselor by HC One, providing services at Stroger (formerly Cook County) Hospital.
In 2011 – 2012, Brenda worked on Communities Putting Prevention to Work and on Chicago’s Healthy Places initiative, and formed part of the team which developed the Hospital Breastfeeding Toolkit for Illinois’ State Perinatal Breastfeeding Quality Improvement Project.
Brenda has served as both Secretary and Treasurer of the Chicago Region Breastfeeding Task Force, and is a current member. She acted as lead for HC One’s Message and Messenger Project to increase umbilical cord blood donations among African-American and Hispanic Families. She has served on the Advisory Board of the Center for Sustainable Health Outreach and on the Illinois WIC Peer Counselor Advisory Committee.
She serves as HealthConnect One’s representative to the United States Breastfeeding Committee, and was elected in 2016 to their national board.
Ms. Reyes became a Registered Nurse in 2012 after completing the Daley College Nursing Program.