A History of Caring

Evara Health, formerly Community Health Centers of Pinellas, was founded in 1980 as the vision of Dr. Johnnie Ruth Clarke. “JRC” was the first African American woman to obtain her PhD from the University of Florida’s College of Education.
Dr. Clarke was a civil rights activist and a pioneer in the fight against sickle cell anemia. Her activism also established modern medical services for the under served African-American residents of St. Petersburg.

Determined to continue her work, we opened our first of many health centers in 1985, on the grounds of the Lakeview Presbyterian Church as the Johnnie Ruth Clarke (JRC) Health Center. We soon outgrew our space and relocated within the historic Mercy Hospital located in St. Petersburg. Transformed into a state-of-the-art facility, we opened its doors to patients on February 2, 2004.

More than 40 years later, we are still a not-for-profit health care organization, and we still provide affordable, primary health care services to the underserved, low-income, uninsured, and underinsured communities across Pinellas County.

We are proud to continue honoring Dr. Clarke’s legacy.

Artistic display of older photography
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