Lena Harvey hails from the heartland, having been born in Chicago, IL and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana. In 1989, at the age of four, Lena was formally diagnosed with Sickle Cell Disease. Childhood for Lena was a unique one, as she and her family learned just how demanding and unpredictable it would be coping with such an illness. Never to be dismayed, Lena figured out early on that if she wanted to survive, she was going to have to make the right decisions, and pace herself. Within the tightly-woven fabric of the local black community where she grew up, Lena found her way into the fold of the historic Martin Center Sickle Cell Initiative (MCSCI), Indiana’s foremost not-for-profit leader in Sickle Cell patient advocacy.
Throughout her school years, Lena was consistently among the top in her class, receiving high marks over her years. Lena earned an Associate’s Degree in Culinary Arts from Sullivan University in Louisville, KY with honors. After a short-lived career as a chef, Lena took time away from the workforce in order to dedicate more time to maintaining a healthy lifestyle and battling every ounce of what Sickle Cell dished out. Another career soon jumped out after a little while and before she knew it she was a Bridal Stylist. This pathway brought just as much joy and fulfillment as her previous one, but she could only work part-time or sometimes seasonally. In 2008 Lena married her high school sweetheart Anthony in a private ceremony on Secret Beach in Oahu, HI. In 2012 they welcomed only son Jaxon. Becoming a mother was a pivotal time period for Lena as she discovered a different form of love. Aside from her rewarding domestic life, she is most proud of the decade of SCD awareness and advocacy work.
Over the years, Lena has freely volunteered, participated, and been employed by the MCSCI, attended various annual conferences, panel discussions, and committees. Lena is currently co-chair to the Indiana Sickle Cell Awareness Day Committee. As of 2022, Lena has fully dedicated her time and energy to Sickle Cell warriors everywhere, by becoming Contributing Founder, Board Member, and Administrative Assistant for the newly established nonprofit Sickle Cell Medical Advocacy, Inc.
Lena’s loved ones describe her personality as dynamic, vibrant, intuitive, influential, lively, authentic, endearing. They say Lena is resilient, vivacious, driven, and principled. They call her a leader. Lena has experienced great success on her journey towards healing her mind, body & spirit. You can find her on YouTube as Lena Lavish The Queen Warrior Herself Lena Lavish The Queen Warrior Herself, Instagram, and Facebook.
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