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About Us

Healthy Start Coalition of Sarasota County is a dedicated organization with a mission to enhance the health and well-being of pregnant women, infants, and families. Our commitment is reflected in our diverse programs and activities, which are designed to empower parents with the knowledge and support they need for their journey into parenthood.

We are a proud partner agency at The Glasser/Schoenbaum Human Services Center “Campus of Caring,” which houses 16 nonprofit health and human service agencies offering help to low-income and at-risk adults, children, and families.

We believe that it takes a community to raise a child, and we’re here to help you find yours. We collaborate with various non-profits, organizations, and agencies in Sarasota County to create a supportive and healthy environment for babies to thrive.

Our history dates back to the early 1990s when Florida’s Healthy Start Program was initiated to combat the state’s high infant mortality rate. The program encouraged the formation of local coalitions to provide high-quality prenatal care and health care for at-risk children. Sarasota County formed its own coalition in 1998 to address specific local issues affecting pregnant women, new mothers, and infants. Today, we continue to provide resources, support, and assistance to ensure healthy pregnancies and births in our community.

As we move forward, the Healthy Start Coalition of Sarasota County remains committed to our mission. We continue to innovate and adapt our programs to meet the evolving needs of our community. We believe that every child deserves a healthy start in life, and we’re dedicated to making this a reality in Sarasota County. By fostering partnerships with local medical professionals, schools, charities, and social services agencies, we’re able to provide comprehensive support to mothers, newborns, and families.

Say hello to our team

Our Mission is to Improve the Health and Well-being of Pregnant Women, Infants, and Families in Sarasota County

Sara Olesen

Associate Executive Director

Casey Jimenez

Connect Intake Coordinator

Darine Murray

Community Resource Navigator

Shon Ewens

Executive Director

Alecia Williams

Quality Assurance Coordinator

Curtis Hayes

Fatherhood Coach

Patricia McMahon

Development and Community Engagement Director

Laura Winn

Office Manager

Yazmil Soriano

Special Programs Coordinator

Care Coordination Team

Our Care Coordination team is the heart of the Healthy Start Program. Care Coordinators serve moms and families in our community, regardless of income, insurance coverage, or residency status, by providing individualized care, support, education, and referrals for specialized service needs.

Office located at: 
2200 Ringling Blvd
Sarasota, FL  34237
(941) 861-2905

  • Mara Cunha, LCSW, Program Administrator – (941) 861-2813
  • Odhet Ortega
  • Flor Ortiz
  • Julio Camacho
  • Luciana Nogueira
  • Ann Monville, RN, MNN, CLC
  • Carol Bilotti
  • Geraldine Franco

2023 - 2024 Volunteer Executive Board

Tiffany Mangold


PJ Brooks

Vice Chair

Marilyn Lapidus

Immediate Past Chair

Angela Baker


Ken Lee


2023 - 2024 At Large Board Members

Dr. Pam Beitlich

Advisory Board Member

Dr. Lisa Ann Bernard


Mara Cunha

Ex Officio

Dr. Washington Hill

Advisory Board Member

Helen James


Dr. Jacqueline Kelly


Ellen Kopel-Puretz


Dr. Paul J. Leichter