FORT LAUDERDALE — Broward Heath’s Seventh Avenue Family Health Center was officially renamed after Cora E. Braynon, the first black director of nursing for Broward Health Department on Wednesday during an open house event.

The official name is Broward Health Cora E. Braynon Family Health Center.

Braynon, a former Broward Health board commissioner, was an advocate for promoting health screenings and education to local underinsured and uninsured residents. She provided significant guidance in developing Broward Health’s approach to delivering primary care in a community-health setting, close to the homes of the people it serves.

Braynon, in 1960, was the first black hired as a public health nurse in Broward. She retired in 1994 and died in 2005 at 71.

Braynon’s grandson, State Sen. Oscar Braynon (D-Miami Gardens), was present on behalf of the family. Oscar Braynon said he was close to his grandmother, whom he admired for her tireless service to public health.

“I am grateful to the district for recognizing all the hard work and dedication my grandmother did for the district,” he said, in an interview before the ceremony. “She had a passion for the public system that provided access to minorities, to people in Golden Heights,” a Fort Lauderdale community.

Her name had been added to the building for a few months now he said, and “every time I drive by it warms my heart and I think about her legacy and I think about her. I almost cried when I was first told about the building renaming.”

Cora Braynon was instrumental in the creation and development of the health center, said Jasmin Shirley, vice president of Broward Health Community Health Services and a mentee of Cora Braynon.

“I share a sense of pride alongside the Broward Health Board of Commissioners who thought so much of Cora that they would rename one of our facilities in her honor,” Shirley said.

 The open house highlighted the role that community health centers provide to underinsured and uninsured residents living in the surrounding community.

“Broward Health Cora E. Braynon Family Health Center is a testament to Broward Health’s commitment to serving sectors of our local community that are still challenged with obtaining access to primary care,” said Frank Nask, chief

executive officer of Broward Health. “I join our commissioners as well as regional leadership and many community members in recognizing and appreciating the achievements of Cora Braynon.” 

The event coincides with National Nurses Week to honor Braynon’s earlier work as a public health nurse. Broward Health Cora E. Braynon Family Health Center, a 50,000-square-foot primary care center, is located at 200 NW Seventh Ave., Fort Lauderdale.

For more information or to make an appointment, call 954-759-6650.