Velvet L. Brown-Watts, is the Founder-Chairperson of Supporters of Families with Sickle Cell Disease, Inc. Supporters (as it is affectionately known) is a community-based Oklahoma nonprofit organization that has assisted families living with sickle cell diseases since 2004. Supporters is an IRS 501(c)(3) designated nonprofit agency. Supporters is the only comprehensive grassroots family support and advocacy organization in Oklahoma that serves as a center of contact and referral service for community resources to assist individuals with sickle cell and related diseases. Supporters promotes self-care management, testing, education, research and development, and economic self-sufficiency as key approaches to empowerment and effective management of sickle cell disease. Our vision is to break the cycle of the disease by increasing self-efficacy and improving the overall quality of life for children, adults and families living with sickle cell diseases.
Velvet is an inspirational voice in the sickle cell community. Velvet is pioneering executive, social worker and community activist. She is the wife of Pastor, Jeremiah Sr. and mother of four children, of which Jeremiah Jr. was diagnosed with sickle cell disease in 2004. Velvet fuses profound cultural sensitivity and team-work, with a heart of compassion. She is passionate about leadership, social justice, dignity and worth of a person. She knows the importance of human relationships, integrity, and competence for individuals within the disability communities.
Velvet believes “empowering” people who are vulnerable is the best way to help one become successful in life.
Raised, in the inner city of Chicago with a theology of service to others, Velvet loves people. Velvet received the Social Justice Award from University of Oklahoma Women Gender Studies for her work with sickle cell disease and women, in 2010, and was also named graduate student of the year by the Oklahoma Chapter of National Association of Social Workers for her advocacy and awareness work with Sickle Cell Disease in the state of Oklahoma.
Velvet has spent over 20 years in social services, serving on several non-profit community boards, and volunteering with many different organizations in the Oklahoma community. Velvet has conducted several workshops for varies agencies throughout Oklahoma as to the impact of SCD/SCT. Velvet is a member of the National Association of Social Workers, a member of Phi Alpha Honor Society and a member of Oklahoma Sickle Cell Disease Association of America Patient Advocacy Committee. Velvet is currently, the President of the General Assembly of the
Sickle Cell Community Consortium.
Velvet holds an AA in Liberal Arts from Tulsa Community College, a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from Northeastern University and Master of Social Work in Administration from University of Oklahoma. Velvet is a certified case manager for the Advantage Program. She has a medical background as a medical social worker with hospice and home health patients. She is an advisory member of My Sisters Keeper, a program which mentor women and teaches leadership. Through the diligent leadership of Velvet and work of Supporters of Families with
Sickle Cell Disease, Inc., board and advisory committees, a statewide sickle cell taskforce group Oklahoma Sickle Cell Collective Impact Team, was formed to address the gaps and proving patient center outcomes recommendations. Velvet is passionate about serving the Oklahoma community and empowering others surviving sickle cell and its related diseases and traits. Her motto is “Learn the Facts, Know the Truth, Save a Life- Sickle Cell Disease Awareness”.