Vanessa Casner is a Field Epidemiologist at the El Paso Department of Public Health. Her devotion to community outreach and public health drives her advocacy for the LGBTQ community, healthy relationships, safer sex practices, and HIV awareness.
Casner received her B.A in Community Health from New Mexico State University in 2010, and her M.A from Walden University in Public Health in 2016. Prior to her current job, Casner worked for the Visiting Nurses Association of El Paso as an Administrative Assistant in the Development Department and at the Child Crisis Center of El Paso as Health Educator where she facilitated sexuality education programs among teens from low-income communities. She later served as a program specialist for four years. In 2018, Casner worked as a former HIV education specialist for The M Factor El Paso. M Factor El Paso is a HIV prevention social networking organization for queer, gay, and bisexual identifying males. M Factor conducts HIV screenings, educational trainings, and workshops to demonstrate the importance of safer sex practices. The group also hosts opportunities to get involved in the community and field trips including group discussions, movie nights and hikes in hopes of creating a safe space for the LGBTQ community
As an HIV education specialist, it was Casner’s job to create educational outreach activities focused on HIV and sexual health. Casner created a safe space for LGBTQ+ individuals by conducting counseling sessions as well as support group meetings for people living with HIV.
Today, Casner works as a Field Epidemiologist at the El Paso Department of Public Health. The epidemiology department’s focus is to monitor and reduce the spread of infectious diseases. Her work and contributions showcase how LGBTQ people can contribute to the everyday well-being of entire communities.