President and Chief Executive Officer, Institute for Healthcare Advancement

Michael Villaire



Michael Villaire, MSLM, is President and Chief Executive Officer for the Institute for Healthcare Advancement, a nonprofit healthcare 501(c)(3) public charity dedicated to empowering people to better health, with a major mission emphasis in health literacy and health equity.

Mr. Villaire has written numerous articles on various aspects of health literacy, and lectures nationally on health literacy. He is co-author of the textbook, Health Literacy in Primary Care: A Clinician’s Guide, published by Springer in 2007, and the self-help health book, What To Do When Your Child Is Heavy, published by IHA in 2009.

​His background includes 20 years as managing editor for peer-reviewed journals in nursing and medicine, hospital publications, physician news magazines, and an online healthcare portal experiment for WebMD. He has helped redesign and launch several medical and nursing journals, and managed the development of a multimedia, interactive curriculum in critical care.


​Mr. Villaire earned two baccalaureate degrees—English (Journalism) and Communications—from Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Mich. He earned his Master’s of Science in Organizational Leadership and Management (Non-profit emphasis) from the University of La Verne, La Verne, Calif., in 2006. His thesis examined health literacy in community clinics in regard to adequacy of patient education materials.

The Health Literacy Specialist Certificate: A Structured Professional Development Approach to Health Literacy Competency

The health literacy field is a relatively new discipline, still working to achieve broad awareness of the scope and deep impact limited health literacy has on the well-being of individuals, and the drain on healthcare resources that the healthcare system causes by imposing unrealistic demands upon those with limited skills and abilities in healthcare. Those working to advance health literacy have no way to showcase their skillsets and abilities—until now.


Join this presentation to:

  • Understand how the seven domains of the Health Literacy Specialist Assessment-Based Certificate were created

  • Select the domains that are applicable to the work you do every day

  • Effectively use your certificates to advance your career as a Health Literacy Specialist

  • Be able to differentiate between a professional Certificate and a Certification