One of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential Persons in the World and author of Stand Up To Stigma: How We Reject and Shame, Pernessa C. Seele is Founder and CEO of The Balm In Gilead, Inc., a not-for- profit organization, celebrating three decades of providing technical support that strengthens the capacity to faith institutions in the USA and in Africa to promote health education, disease management, and services that contribute to the elimination of human suffering.
As a pioneer in developing public health & faith based models for engaging individuals in public health interventions, Essence Magazine, in its 35th Anniversary issue, named Dr. Seele one of the 35 Most Beautiful And Remarkable Women In The World; and Ebony Magazine named her one of its Power 150. She was selected by Women’s eNews as one of its 21 Leaders for the 21st Century. In 2017, His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New York, bestowed upon Dr. Seele the Pierre Toussaint Medallion.
Pernessa believes loving your neighbors as you love yourself is key to healing our world of stigma, hate, fear and shame.