Monday, March 3, 2014

Denise Black Joins Healthy Acadia As Drug Free Communities Project Coordinator

Denise Black Joins Healthy Acadia As Drug Free Communities Project Coordinator

HANCOCK COUNTY - Healthy Acadia, a community health coalition serving Hancock and Washington Counties, enthusiastically welcomes Denise Black to the staff team as Drug Free Communities Project Coordinator.

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Denise is responsible for coordinating Healthy Acadia's Drug Free Communities Grant, an initiative that empowers community participation to support and engage youth and prevent substance abuse across Hancock County. In this role, Denise will provide project planning, implementation and program evaluation. She will build and sustain community partnerships with various entities, including healthcare providers, social service agencies, law enforcement, civic, youth and religious organizations, businesses, schools, parents and individuals. She will work with partners to mobilize collective action resulting in policy and environmental supports that foster youth leadership and resiliency, while working to prevent and reduce substance abuse.

“We are thrilled to welcome Denise to our team,” stated Maria Donahue, Healthy Acadia’s Community Health Director. “Denise has already hit the ground running in her new role, bringing her extensive experience as well as her passion for addressing substance abuse and building healthier communities to this important work.”

Denise has been a leader in community health efforts for more than fifteen years. She recently served as the Director for the Blue Hill-based Healthy Peninsula program, where she led the development of programming and the implementation of community health improvement priorities and strategic objectives. Denise has also been active in the Healthy Acadia Coalition, serving on the Coalition’s Advisory Council.

“I am excited to serve our Hancock County communities in this role and to bring people together to tackle the serious challenge of substance abuse,” said Denise Black. “I believe this initiative can make a truly powerful difference in our communities because it focuses on community engagement with an emphasis on youth participation, and it uses positive, strength-based approaches. I am greatly looking forward to working with many community members and partners throughout the region on this initiative.”

A Hancock County Drug Free Communities Coalition meeting is scheduled on Monday, March 31st at the Ellsworth City Hall auditorium. For more information or to get involved, please contact Denise at 667-7171 or

Drug Free Communities is a federally funded initiative through the Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Healthy Acadia is a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization that has been working across the region for the past 13 years. Healthy Acadia serves as the Healthy Maine Partnership for Hancock County, coordinating community health services. The coalition creates lasting improvements to the health of communities across Downeast Acadia by connecting individuals with health supports, building partnerships, coordinating education and prevention services, and improving policies and environments.