Mildred C. Rodriguez of Miami, FL will be honored today in New York by Woman's Day magazine with the National Woman's Day Red Dress Award.
This distinguished award is being given to Rodriguez for her pioneering work through WomenHeart:The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease. She has emerged as a national voice for the Hispanic-American community on the issue of women's heart health.
"We are so proud of the work Mildred has done through WomenHeart to support other women living with heart disease and making a real difference in the Hispanic-American community," said Lisa M. Tate, CEO. "To receive the Woman's Day Red Dress Award is a testament to her passion for helping all women live more heart healthy lives and to the work of WomenHeart."
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A member of the national corps of WomenHeart Champions, Rodriguez feels this award can be a good catalyst for awareness.
"The Red Dress Award is a tremendous personal honor, and a fantastic opportunity to raise national awareness about the need for prevention, early and accurate diagnosis, and proper treatment of heart disease in Hispanic-American women," said Rodriguez. "But only 37% know heart disease is their leading health threat," she continued.
"My work as a WomenHeart Champion and Support Network Coordinator has allowed me the incredible opportunity to let all Hispanic-American women know that heart disease is very real and that they can start taking charge of their heart health today," she added.
Mildred's story began in 1998 when she suffered a heart attack and needed open heart surgery. Convinced that she could have avoided her heart attack if she had been educated about heart disease, Rodriguez set out to tell Hispanic-American women what she wish she had been told about — the heart disease warning signs and risk factors, and steps to take to live a heart healthy life.
"In 2010 I started the first WomenHeart Support Network for Spanish speaking women living with heart disease in Miami. Every day I witness the power of education and support for Hispanic-American women. I am convinced that, had I found a WomenHeart Support Network right after my open heart surgery, my recovery would have been much faster and much easier."
WomenHeart: The National Coalition for Women with Heart Disease is the nation's only patient centered organization serving the 43 million American women living with or at risk for heart disease – the leading cause of death for women.