Norma Olvera, PhD

Norma Olvera, Full Professor, Psychological, Health, and Learning Sciences Department, University of Houston. Dr. Olvera is the 2017 USDA E. Kika de la Garza Fellow, 2012 Obesity Society Fellow, and the Latino Health Disparities Lab Director. She received her doctoral degree in Developmental Psychology, with focus on maternal and child health from the University of Houston. Dr. Olvera’s research has focused on the development of family-based obesity interventions designed to promote healthy eating, exercise, and positive body image in Hispanic and African American youth. Dr. Olvera has 25 years of teaching experience and has published in high-impact journals, with a substantial number of google citations. Dr. Olvera has secured over $7,000,000 in federal/state and foundation funding. Her passion is to build healthy families, healthy communities.

Louise Villejo, MPH, MCHES
Vice President

Louise Villejo, served as the Executive Director of the Patient/Family Education Program at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center for 33 years. She was responsible for developing, implementing, and evaluating strategic, financial, and operational plans for hospital- and clinic-based patient education services. In addition, she initiated The Learning Centers, the demonstration kitchen, and published/produced over 200 patient education materials (print, video, online) designed for low-literate or hard-to-reach audiences. Founding member and current Hispanic Health Coalition board member, Ms. Villejo, now retired, chaired the successful virtual 2021 Latino Health Summit (LHS) and chaired 2019 LHS planning committee. She continues her passion for community service and health equity through volunteer work with several nonprofit organizations.

Yolanda Lopez

Ms. Yolanda Lopez is the Program Manager, Cancer Survivorship at Houston Methodist Sugarland Hospital. Her role focuses on cultivating community partnerships and outreach efforts to increase awareness and utilization of programs offered for cancer patients and caregivers. Her passion and purpose to help narrow the gap in health disparities comes from her personal experience as a 25-year cancer survivor. She has served on several non-profit boards and has extensive volunteer activity in the community. Most recently, she was invited by the American Cancer Society, Fox News and other media related resources to share her story of survivorship to communities in both English and Spanish markets about the importance or prevention, vaccination and outreach for medical treatment and resources.

Maria E. Cantu-Ondarza MEd MBA

Maria E. Cantú -Ondarza’ s commitment is to improve the Hispanic health. She is Director of Development & Community Giving at Legacy Community Health, Inc., where she fundraises for programs and capital campaigns and oversees Legacy’s Little Readers initiative in 46 pediatric clinics. Maria’s past work experience also included teaching at the Facultad de Trabajo Social, Cerveceria Cuauhtémoc y Famosa, Private International Bilingual Schools in Monterrey, Mexico, Christus Medical Group, and Legacy Community Health. Maria collaborates with different organizations such as the March of Dimes, Barbara Bush Houston Literacy Foundation, Mayor’s Adult Literacy Initiative, Mexican Consulate-Red Global, Reach Out & Read-UT-Health Children’s Learning Institute, Asociacion de Empresarios Mexicanos-Woodland. She earned a Master of Education at Universidad de Monterrey and a Master of Business Administration-Healthcare concentration from the University of Phoenix.

Linda Civallero, MPH
Board  Member

Linda Civallero is a native Houstonian who is committed to improving health in our community. She is the Director of Community Engagement at the University of Houston College of Medicine, where she builds and maintains relationships and facilitates collaborative projects with community partners in the Third Ward and East End. Most recently, she helped manage school-based grants for mental health prevention and early intervention at The Menninger Clinic. She served 18 years at MD Anderson Cancer Center, managing and directing federally-funded cancer prevention projects. Linda’s experience includes grant development, project planning and implementation, and community engagement. Linda earned a master’s degree in public health from UT Health Houston, School of Public Health and a bachelor’s degree in sociology and biology from Trinity University.

Jorge Olvera, MSW
Board  Member

Jorge Olvera, MSW, Director of Diversity Outreach at the Alzheimer’s Association, Houston, and SE Texas. Jorge works with vulnerable populations, specializing in community health and senior services. He has experience developing programs to address Social Determinants of Health in underserved communities, specifically food insecurity and access. Jorge has served in various non-profit boards and committees in the Houston area. Most recently he leads the DEI efforts of the Alzheimer’s Association to increase the reach of services to the LGBT, African American and Hispanic population. He holds a Master of Social Work from the University of Houston.

Norma A. Pérez Raifaisen, MD, DrPH
Board  Member

Dr. Pérez Raifaisen, a Houstonian, with dual citizenship, received her medical degree from the Universidad de Monterrey, Mexico, and completed her residency training in physical medicine and rehabilitation at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, México. She also earned her doctorate in public health at the University of Texas, Houston, School of Public Health, Houston. Dr. Pérez Raifaisen is the Assistant Dean, Student Affairs, and an Associate Professor of Internal Medicine – Geriatrics at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston. She has served in the Office of Student Affairs and Admissions for over ten years when she has been active in academic committees, institutionalized the Hispanic Center of Excellence, and created several academic opportunities for medical students. Dr. Pérez Raifaisen also serves in several Diversity & Inclusion organizations and committees.

Juan Cavazos, MBA
Board  Member

Juan Cavazos is a proud Houstonian who aims to give back to the people of the city he loves. He received a BA in Communications from the University of Houston and an MBA in Finance from the University of Houston – Downtown. During his undergraduate studies, Juan interned with St. Jude Children’s Hospital and assisted with fundraising in the Houston area. He previously worked as a Financial Coordinator with the University of Houston, assisting professors in management in their research budget. Currently, he works as a Credit Examiner for Zions Ban corporation, reviewing new and existing loans for adherence to bank policy. Juan is passionate about contributing to positive changes in Houston’s communities.