Black History is 365 days a year for Oliver Jones, financial analyst for our health system’s information services department.
“It reveals the sacrifice, hardship and achievements our ancestors conquered for a better society,” he says.
Jones has worked for our ministry for nearly four years, and this is his first job in healthcare. He says he has been most influenced in his career by his parents, family, coaches and educators.
When considering the importance of diversity in the workplace, especially healthcare, Jones says, “Healthcare provides services to EVERYONE, not a specific background, ethnicities or beliefs. It demonstrates TOGETHERNESS, by gathering individuals with different perspectives.”
Building Beloved Community
This year in recognition of Black History Month, our health system is reflecting on The King Center’s 2023 theme to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s work and life: It Starts with Me: Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset.
Jones cultivates community through his volunteer work.
“Just last year, I started coaching youth football for Greater Baton Rouge Panthers, and I enjoy coaching, teaching and mentoring those kids,” he says. “The nonprofit organization is fairly new but are creating a buzz within the city.”
Reflecting on Black History
When reflecting on the contributions of Black Americans in history, a particular person comes to mind.
“There are many leaders I can think of nationally, but there’s one locally that raised me,” Jones says. “My father, the late Oliver ‘Teeny Boy’ Jones. He was the first African-American Councilman for the City of Port Allen, district 4, and served 50+ years as a Union laborer.”
A meaningful quote for Jones is from the late Rep. John Lewis: “You are the light. Never let anyone, any person or any force dampen, dim or diminish your light.”
Our DEI Commitment
Our ministry’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion supports culturally competent care education for our team members all year long, including during Black History Month each February.