Local 75 member honored for service to AZ’s medically underserved residents


Local 75 member Charles Donohue, right, receives an award recognizing his service to Arizona’s medically underserved populations. At left, Dr. Richard Carmona, former U.S. surgeon general and congressional candidate, hosted the event.

The award recognized Mr. Donohue’s exceptional service provided to medically underserved populations of Arizona. It all began when Mr. Donohue moved to Tucson, Ariz. in July of 1982. He was appointed to the Southern Arizona Central Labor Council as a delegate for the Ironworkers Local 75.

Dr. Augusto Ortiz, a doctor who committed his life to serving those in need, began a mobile health program in 1975 that would serve rural communities where medical services were not easily accessible. As this program continued throughout the years, Mr. Donohue became involved with the clinic, which would visit the Picture Rocks area of Pima County twice a month.

Dr. Ortiz continued to head the mobile clinic at the time. Mr. Donohue and his late wife assisted with the non-medical problems for the underserved. His wife would sometimes drive the clinic van when there was no one else to help.

Most of the people served by clinic lacked health insurance, had no or little income, and were veterans, elderly or single parents. The training provided by the Southern Arizona Central Labor Council was important in helping those in need receive assistance.

There is now a permanent health clinic in the Picture Rocks area of Pima County named after Dr. Augusto Ortiz and his wife Martha Ortiz.

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