By Elizabeth Morabito
Jimena Loveluck “was always drawn to helping professions and community work” in great part thanks to the high value her Chilean family placed on human rights and social justice, influencing her from early on.
In her role as health officer for the Washtenaw County Health Department, she strategically led the county through a comprehensive COVID-19 response that included the equitable distribution of testing, vaccines, and current information. It seems fitting she was recently selected by the United Way of Washtenaw County (UWWC) Women United group as the 2022 Woman of the Year.
Loveluck is a local. She grew up in Ann Arbor and attended the University of Michigan, earning her B.A. in English Language & Literature. She met her future husband as a freshman, and they ultimately went to Boston together where she went to graduate school and he attended law school.
She embraced being a Bostonian and didn’t plan on moving back to Michigan. But, their two children changed all of that. “Moving back to Ann Arbor was a great decision for our family and our kids grew up being close to their grandparents and other family.”
Loveluck shares, “I view health as a basic human right and was drawn to public health because of its focus on population health and health equity. I have worked in public health for over 30 years, with most of that time focused on HIV/AIDS. At a young age, I lost a dear friend to AIDS and this experience led to me working in HIV prevention and care for most of my career.”
And then in 2017, she joined the Washtenaw County Health Department where her focus changed but her passion for public health never wavered. Although addressing the pandemic has monopolized most of her time as of late, Loveluck has big plans for her team in the near future. “
These include expanding our network of community health workers, ramping up mobile health services, addressing the public health needs of our aging population, building our capacity to address climate change impact on public health, and working on policy and systems to reduce health inequities in our county.”
She will be honored on March 9, 2022 at UWWC’s virtual Power of the Purse event.
Washtenaw County Health Department, Human Services Building, 555 Towner Street, Ypsilanti 48198, 734-544-6700, M-F 9:00 am-4:00 pm, www.washtenaw.org/1129/Health-Department