Blue Cross Exec Honored For Work in LGBTQ Community
A Blue Cross executive passionate about helping others was recently recognized for her contributions.
Corktown Health Center presented the 2nd Annual LGBTQ Health Heroes Award to Laura Marble, VP, IT at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Marble was honored for her years of dedication to helping the underserved in the LGBTQ community. Marble received her award on May 10 at the annual Cheers! To HELP Wine Tasting and Reception. The event benefits Corktown Health Center.
Marble has a passion for helping others, especially those experiencing social determinants that impact their health. “I have always been passionate about supporting the LGBTQ community. I have done that for a number of years,” said Marble. “It probably really started with the HIV epidemic and how it impacted close friends of mine.”
Her passion started when one of those close friends was diagnosed with HIV and later passed away. “I always feel bad that he was never able to be his true self, even to the point of dying of AIDS,” explained Marble. “I’ve tried to honor his memory and do what I can do to help, both from working with HIV prevention organizations and the LGBTQ community so people can feel comfortable. That’s why I think the work that Blue Cross Blue Shield does and diversity and inclusion is so important, making sure people feel comfortable bringing their full self to work every day, the full person.“
Marble is grateful to work for a company that shares her passions. “I think we’re active in the community really looking at health care disparities and how we can help lessen health care disparities … I just think Blue Cross is exemplary in what they do in the community and how they help,” said Marble.
She is proud to work with the Corktown Health Clinic and appreciates their vision for helping the LGBTQ community. “It’s more than just treating people, it’s treating the whole person,” said Marble. “They will always treat a person … the other piece that I think is really pioneering is that they have teamed up with Wayne State. In working with Wayne State, Wayne State will take all of their residents and they will have an opportunity to work in the center so they will be better prepared, more empathetic and compassionate if they have LGBTQ members in their practices once they become physicians.”
Volunteering is not only beneficial to the cause, but also contributes to the betterment of the volunteer as well. “I think I’ve really grown to appreciate being open, meeting people where they live and it has so much enriched my life because I’ve met people who are different than I am and they become friends and colleagues,” said Marble. She also recognizes that being able to volunteer is a privilege in itself, too. “I think it’s really possible because of the environment we create here at Blue Cross so I feel very grateful and privileged that I can even do this.”
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Photo credit: Therese Embree