Meet Our Team

Darlene Brown-Williams, PHD

Darlene Brown-Williams

Darlene Brown-Williams is the Assistant Commissioner for Whole Health and Community Resilience at DVS. This position plays an integral role in implementing and overseeing the VetsThriveNYC initiative, which supports the First Lady's mental health roadmap and ThriveNYC campaign. In this role, Brown-Williams is responsible for overseeing community health case management, family and community engagement and community health coordination of the VetsThriveNYC initiative. More specially, Brown-Williams oversees the implementation and evaluation the NYC Veteran 'Core 4' Consortium integrative health model by developing, executing, and overseeing the research and evaluation of an action plan to build a foundation of growth, resilience, integrity, and trust for veterans and their families. The 'Core 4' model incorporates 1) clinical treatment, 2) community holistic services, 3) peer intervention and 4) social support, and  education and engagement through cultual initiatives. The consortium consists of a core steering group as well as relevant stakeholders from relevant 'Core 4' programs.

Brown-Williams also manages policies related to VetsThriveNYC, integrative health services, community resilience for veterans and their families, and directs staff in support of these policies.  She also leads the collaboration between City agencies and Mayor's Offices, such as the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, New York Health and Hospitals, 311, and ThriveNYC and participates in the City Interagency Mental Health Council.

Prior to her appointment to DVS, Brown-Williams held progressively responsible executive positions in City government. Most recently she served as an Assistant Commissioner at the NYC Administration for Children's Services (ACS) in the Division of Early Care and Education (ECE). In this position, Brown-Williams provided oversight to a complex child care operation to ensure the health, safety and structured learning of NYC children while they are in City funded educational programs. ACS manages the largest child care system in the country administering child care services to over 140,000 children, 20,000 child care providers, 400,000 programs and private schools.

Brown-Williams began her NYC government career at the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene focusing on improvements in health status for NYC's most impoverished neighborhoods. She led teams that targeted programs and resources in high-need neighborhoods to ensure quality care, the reduction of health disparities as well as addressing the fundamental factors that impact spiritual, emotional, environmental and economic wellness. She worked with community stakeholders and elected officials to establish relationships and engage them in health promotion initiatives to address health concerns.

Brown-Williams has also served in various positions in the private sector related to the improvement of livability, wellness and health for individuals in the homeless population, substance abuse, domestic violence, and therapeutic foster care. Her career path displays key positions in agencies that serve some of the City's highest need populations. In addition to her full time work Brown-Williams is an author and since 2012, serves as an Associate Adjunct Professor at Long Island University Brooklyn Campus in the School of Health Professions. She developed the curriculum for the Diversity & Health Disparities course which explores the disparities in health status, life expectancy, and healthcare in the United States. She instructs healthcare students regarding the important factors such as racism, discrimination, diversity, culture, socio-economic status, gender, geography, and access to healthcare so that they can acquire the skills necessary to deliver culturally appropriate health services in the U.S.

Brown-Williams received her Doctorate of Philosophy in Public Policy & Administration from Walden University, her Master's Degree in Public Administration from Metropolitan College of NY, her Bachelor of Arts in Human Services from Audrey Cohen College and her Associates Degree in Liberal Arts from the Borough of Manhattan Community College.