Nancy Halpern Ibrahim, MPH, has led Esperanza Community Housing Corporation as the Executive Director since November 2006. She joined Esperanza in 1995 as the founding Director of Health Programs and designed Esperanza’s model Community Health Promoters Program, which has graduated 416 bilingual Community Health Promoters/ Promotores de Salud over the past eighteen years. As Executive Director, she leads a staff of 28, addressing five major program areas: Affordable Housing, Health, Environmental Justice, Economic Development, and Art and Culture.
Ms. Ibrahim’s efforts have been central to pioneering environmental health strategies in the region, and to advancing the reputation of Mercado La Paloma, Esperanza’s economic development venue, as a cultural and culinary hub. Esperanza’s Community Health Promoters programs have engendered pioneering community health initiatives such as the South Los Angeles Healthy Homes Project, Better Neighborhood/Same Neighbors, the People Not Pozos campaign that struggles against oil and gas extraction activities in residential neighborhoods, and the South Los Angeles Health and Human Rights Coalition.
In 2011, Ms. Ibrahim was awarded a Durfee Foundation Sabbatical. In May 2006, she received the “Helen Rodriguez-Trias Award for Excellence in Community-Based Women’s Health Leadership” from the California State Office of Women’s Health. Since 2005, Ibrahim has been a founding Board Member of T.R.U.S.T South LA. In 2003, Ms. Ibrahim was welcomed into the UCLA School of Public Health’s Alumni Hall of Fame, recognizing “outstanding accomplishments in community-based health programs, including community health education and training.” Ms. Ibrahim received her Master of Public Health degree from UCLA, and has worked as a social justice activist in the field of women’s health and development for the past twenty-nine years.
Esperanza Community Housing Corporation is a nationally-recognized nonprofit founded in 1989, that empowers the hardworking, low-income families of South Central LA to build healthier lives for themselves. With a holistic approach that includes housing, health, education and employment, Esperanza partners with residents and other organizations to fight the interlocking problems of poverty. Esperanza has worked for over 24 years to build safe, quality housing that is affordable to low-income families. Its Promotora de Salud (Community Health Promoter) program trains community members to improve the health of families while preparing them for employment opportunities in the fields of health and social service. The Mercado La Paloma, Esperanza’s cultural and culinary hub, spurs economic development and is home to sixteen first-time small family-owned businesses and six community serving non-profits.