Maria Brelis Schirmer
Community Coach

Maria Schirmer is a Community Coach with the Healthy Wisconsin Leadership Institute. Currently, she is in graduate school pursing her Master of Social Work at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Helen Bader School of Social Welfare. Prior to HWLI, Maria worked at the Rape Crisis Center (RCC) in Dane County for five years leading the Education and Prevention Department. While at RCC, Maria designed and implemented a Youth Advisory Board for teens working to end rape culture, developed an outreach volunteering program, and created Safer Bar, a bystander intervention curriculum designed for bar staff to create a safer environment for patrons and reduce instances of gender-based violence. Maria also worked at Wellstone Action, training audiences nationwide on grassroots organizing and coalition building and developing their first High School Camp Wellstone.

Maria’s research interests include: social justice, particularly examining intersections of race and gender, youth-based community organizing, trauma informed community building, and art therapy. As a Wisconsin native, Maria is passionate about changing health disparities in the state so that health and wellbeing are not just for a few, but for all.

Contact Information

Maria Brelis Schirmer
UW Population Health Institute
610 Walnut Street, 546 WARF

Phone: (608) 265-6405
Fax: (608) 262-6404
Email: mbschirmer@wisc.edu