Health Department Announces Passing of Longtime Board of Health President

Tue October 16, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DUPAGE COUNTY-It is with deep sadness that Executive Director Karen Ayala and members of the DuPage County Board of Health announce the passing of Linda A. Kurzawa of Winfield. Kurzawa dedicated her time and energy to serving the residents of DuPage County for more than 30 years.

Known as a passionate advocate and public health leader, Kurzawa served as President of the Board of Health and the DuPage County Health Department since 1999, nearly one-third of the agency's existence. In this role, she established a progressive vision and strategic business plan to ensure the sustainability of public health programming in DuPage County.

"Linda Kurzawa was an extraordinary public servant who was committed to her family and the community. She brought both a vision and a business model to the Health Department that will serve DuPage County residents for years to come. Beyond her work, though, we are all better off because of the person that Linda was, and the fact that she shared herself with us. Together, we lost a leader and a friend," Ayala said.

Under the guidance of Kurzawa, the Health Department underwent a financial evolution that allowed the agency to save for and build the recently re-named "Linda A. Kurzawa Community Center" without assuming debt. She took great pride in extending the mental health services provided in a stigma-free, welcoming environment that the state-of-art facility achieved when it was opened in October 2015.

Linda Kurzawa launched her community involvement in 1987 as a member of the Thorium Action Group (TAG) and was instrumental in achieving the clean-up of radioactive thorium in West Chicago and the surrounding area. In 1992, she was elected as the District 6 representative on the DuPage County Board and the DuPage County Forest Preserve District Board. While serving on the County Board, she also held the position of Chairwoman for the County Health and Human Services Committee.

An avid supporter of the Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention Program, Kurzawa was honored as a "Local Hero" by BMW for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation in 2007.

As President of the Board of Health, Linda Kurzawa oversaw many community initiatives, including:
•  Expansion of the urgent care dental clinic;
•  The local response to the H1N1 influenza pandemic;
•  Initiating the Rx Box drug take-back program;
•  Community-wide education regarding the Affordable Care Act (ACA);
•  Supporting the initial response for heroin overdoses; and
•  Implementation of integrated care services for behavioral health clients.

Linda was devoted to her husband of 46 years, Dennis, her son Steve, daughter Leslie (Scott) Flatter, and four grandchildren.

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