Improving overall wellness of Black families

Educating and raising awareness about the impact of opioid addiction in the African American Community

Have a place at the table (not on the menu) this coalition will serve as a vehicle to inform state and local policy makers

Our Leaders


Charlestine “Charlie” Daniel

Affectionally called Ms. Charlie in the village. She is the Director and Founder of the African American Opioid Coalition and the program coordinator for falls prevention at Safe Communities Madison-Dane county. She has been an advocate and ally to underrepresented groups for over 35 years. She retired from the Wisconsin Technical College System as the education director for Minority Students Participation and Displaced Homemakers. She has been the recipient of many awards in the village, including. YWCA Women of Distinction, NAACP, Community Shares Sally Sunde award, City of Madison James C. Wright award, and the Dane County Martin Luther King, Jr. award to name a few. She is the past president of Access Community Health Centers, a member of the African American Health Network, Wisconsin Women of Color Network and the Madison Metropolitan Links, Inc. She studied at Jackson State College, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and the University of London.


Candace M. McDowell

Candace retired with Emerita status after serving 22 years as the Assistant Dean/Director of the Multicultural Student Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

She has been volunteering and serving the community in various capacities since her retirement including her service as member and secretary for the African American Opioid Coalition. She recently began working part time as a Project Coordinator for the African American Health Network and Vaccine Educator for UW Health.


Carola Gaines

Carola is the Community Liaison Manager/Sr. Advocate, for Quartz Health Solutions.
She has worked for Quartz and UW Health for 27 years, serving Medicaid families in advocating and creating programs that support their health and assist in removing barriers to receive quality health care. Since
1994 the Quartz BadgerCare Plus(BC+) membership has grown from 1,200 in Dane County to approximately 45,000 members in 16 Counties and still growing. She is challenged daily as she works to meet the needs of the members in the many areas of their lives. Her goals are to coordinate and provide a heightened level of support to Quartz BC+ providers and BC+ membership, by implementing innovative programs to improve access to care and striving to decrease health inequities. Carola serves on several community Boards and committees. She is Co-Chair of AAHN, Co-Chair African American Health Network, Board Chair of the Rainbow Project, Board member the Foundation for Black Women Wellness, Secretary, One City School, Chair of Safe Sleep African-American Faith base initiative and member of Dane County Health Council and several other committees. She has received numerous awards and is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.




Drug Poisoning Information