Since starting as a college intern until today working as a senior communications specialist, Camille Amadeo has built her career as a team member within our health system.
As part of the internal communications team, Amadeo’s role entails communicating to team members within all five markets across our health system: Our Lady of the Lake Health in Greater Baton Rouge, Our Lady of Lourdes Health in Acadiana, St. Francis Health in Northeast Louisiana, Our Lady of the Angels Health in Bogalusa and the Northshore, and St. Dominic’s Hospital in Jackson, Mississippi.
“My efforts involve creating and communicating content that is educational, informative and entertaining to all employees using various mediums of communication,” Amadeo says.
Celebrating Her Hispanic Heritage
Amadeo and her family are originally from Puerto Rico. Her mother’s family is from Barranquitas, and her father’s family is from Mayaguez.
They moved to Madisonville, Louisiana, 13 years ago because her father was offered a great job opportunity in New Orleans. Amadeo and her sister were 11 and 10. “We had already learned how to read and speak English in first grade, so it made the transition a little bit easier,” she says.
Maintaining her family ties to Puerto Rico is important to Amadeo and her family. “We always make the effort to go back home and visit our family in Puerto Rico at least once a year. It’s one way we stay connected with our family and reminds us of our culture and heritage.”
Keeping Connections Through Food and Language
Food is a way to connect, both to our own culture and to experience others’ cultures. Rice is a staple in Amadeo’s parents’ house.
“My mom always cooks arroz con habichuelas with practically every dish!” Amadeo says, “My dad makes sure to stop by the Hispanic market in Metairie and bring back platanos to make mofonogo or amarillitos with all of our dishes. It can help make a simple dish into a delicious Puerto Rican meal.”
Speaking Spanish is a priority for the Amadeo family.
“Since we moved, my parents always made it a habit to speak to us in Spanish,” Amadeo says. “No matter the conversation, we have to respond or text back in Spanish. Thanks to their persistence in speaking our native language, both my sister and I are still fluent in Spanish despite not having many friends or any family members in Louisiana to speak the language with.”
Favorite Cultural Dish
Trifongo de Pulpo comes to mind for Amadeo when asked about a treasured meal connected to her heritage. The Trifongo is a trio of viands or vegetables and is commonly prepared from green plantain, ripe plantain and yucca. It is fried, then mashed with garlic and bits of pork rinds or bacon. On top of the trifongo you can add some protein such as chicken, meat or seafood. Amadeo says, “My favorite protein to add to my trifongo is octopus!”
Our DEI Commitment
Part of Amadeo’s work includes serving as a member of our Diversity, Equity and inclusion Council and providing communication support for the council’s work. “What brings me the most joy is communicating our DEI efforts to our team members!” Amadeo says.
Our ministry’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion supports culturally competent care education for our team members all year long, including during Hispanic Heritage Month each September 15 to October 15.