It was her husband who pointed out the new hospital being built in South LA. Valerie Suarez had grown up in South Central, near the Coliseum, and spent weekends visiting her grandparents two blocks from the site of the old King/Drew hospital, but she hadn’t yet heard of MLK Community Healthcare (MLKCH). As soon as she did some research, she instantly knew it was the place for her.
Valerie’s roots run deep in South LA—both her parents were born and raised here, as were her and her three siblings. “I had a lot of aunts, uncles, cousins all around. I grew up around here. This community—it’s like home to me,” she says.
She applied for multiple positions, looking for her golden opportunity. Her persistence paid off. When MLKCH offered her a job as a transporter in 2017, “I couldn’t have been happier,” she says. She knew she had landed exactly where she belonged.