, 2014

Treakle presented ‘Unsung Hero Award’

by Renss Greene

The Virginia Health Care Foundation (VHCF) recently awarded a local insurance broker and philanthropist its “Unsung Hero Child Health Champion Award.”

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From left are Del. Riley Ingram, VHCF board chairman Jane Kusiak, Iris Treakle, and Doug Gray of the Virginia Association of Health Plans.

Iris Treakle, a volunteer administrator at the David B. Nichols Health Center on Tangier Island, was presented the award June 7 at VHCF’s “Heroes in Health Care” event in Richmond.

Shelagh Greenwood, marketing and outreach manager of the Family Access to Medical Insurance Security (FAMIS) program at the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services, nominated Treakle. Greenwood describes Treakle’s work in glowing terms. “What Iris has done to assist the residents of Tangier Island is nothing short of miraculous,” she said in Treakle’s nomination. “Her generosity and strength of purpose knows no end. She’s unstoppable!”

Included in the award is a $2,000 check to the David B. Nichols Health Center, where Treakle volunteers. Upon encouragement from the center’s namesake, the late Dr. Nichols, Treakle took on hundreds of hours of training to become an unpaid FAMIS administrator.

FAMIS is a Virginia program that attempts to bring free or affordable health insurance to children of needy families. FAMIS is Virginia’s implementation of the federal Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which is designed as a stopgap to insure children of families with small incomes, who nonetheless make too much to qualify for Medicaid.

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