The Volunteer of Year Award honors an AAPPN member who makes a difference to the organization.
Danielle DeOliveira has served as Chair of the AAPPN Legislation Committee since 2018, after serving as a committee member the previous two years.
Advocacy is arguably the top priority for AAPPN, and it is of crucial importance to our members. Leading the advocacy effort is undeniably the most difficult volunteer role. The volunteer must navigate the breakneck pace, the bewildering language of law and politics, and—perhaps most importantly—the need to be comfortable with an enormous lack of information or understanding.
Danielle not only manages these difficulties, she seems to thrive within them. Bringing humor, calm, and sensibility, she leads a group of volunteers and coordinates with staff and lobbyists with a sense of ease that makes everyone around her more comfortable and confident.
Her tenure as Legislation Committee Chair has coincided with a unique Democratic control of the governorship and the two houses of the state legislature. That has resulted in a flood of legislation specific to mental health care. It is perhaps the most overwhelming period for an AAPPN volunteer since the fight for prescriptive authority. Through this period, Danielle has ensured that our Legislative Committee is thorough, thoughtful, and focused to protect our profession. The members of AAPPN could not have wished for a more dedicated and vital volunteer.