Ms. Pluscedia Williams, born and raised in the Compton area of Los Angeles, has not only been a longtime CERP community partner, but also a staunch advocate for academic-community partnerships. In her current role as Vice-Chair of Clinical and Community Programs at Charles Drew University, Ms. Plus (as everyone calls her) has been leading community engagement efforts and providing input on research project protocols and their impact on vulnerable, underresourced communities across Los Angeles County for the past 20 years. In addition, Ms. Plus helps co-direct CERP efforts at the Lundquist Institute, one of four sites that make up the UCLA CTSI. Prior to this role, Ms. Plus led consultation efforts on community partnered participatory research as a Community Instructor.
Ms. Plus's passion for bidirectional engagement efforts between academic institutions and local communities began at a very young age, working alongside the late (and great) Dr. Loretta Jones and other community leaders. She continued to pursue her interests by obtaining a Bachelor of Arts in African American Studies/Black Studies and Psychology from California State University, Long Beach. Since then, “Ms. Plus” has been part of various committees, chaired advisory boards, and assisted in symposium creation and execution – all related to community-partnered advancements in research. Ms. Plus has received the national Lucille Webb Community Based Public Health Caucus Award from the American Public Health Association (APHA) for her community leadership and engagement expertise in community health equity and she continues to enrich the relationships created within our local communities. Leaving a lasting impression with those she meets, Ms. Plus lives by her motto, “If I can change one life per year, I have fulfilled God’s purpose for me.”
Did You Know?
Delivered at home in Compton by a physician living across the street, Ms. Plus was named after her close aunt.
A gardening enthusiast, Ms. Plus's favorite foods are radishes, grapes, and peanuts (specifically peanut M&M).
Ms. Plus was one of the first Black presidents of the Lynwood Unified School District’s employee unions (California School Employees Association) and Co-Founder of the National Community Center for Participatory Research Excellence.