Gabriel Manns, a spring 2016 graduate of the University of Maryland University College Master of Science in health informatics administration program, has been appointed to serve as secretary of the District of Columbia Health Information Management Association.

A DCHIMA member since his days as a UMUC graduate student, Manns was appointed to the executive board in October of 2017 on the recommendation of DCHIMA president Zakevia Green-Lawson.

"It's just a really good professional association that a lot of pros are in," said Manns. "Being a member offers resources you couldn't necessarily have at your fingertips."

DCHIMA is a component state association of the American Health Information Management Association, which represents more than 103,000 health information management professionals. The association advocates for quality healthcare through advanced health information management for the benefit of providers, the DC community, and the healthcare industry at large.

"Being a part of DCHIMA, and especially this appointment, has really plugged me into the industry," said Manns. "I'm serious about my organization and my profession."

Shifting careers after retiring from the NFL, where he played offensive tackle for the Cincinnati Bengals, Manns started working at a healthcare facility as a rehab technician working with physical, occupational, and speech therapists. His desire for advancement in the field, along with his love of computers, led him to enroll in the healthcare informatics master's program at UMUC in 2014. Upon his graduation two years later, Manns was promoted to health information management supervisor.

"Things are shaking out mostly the way I've envisioned," said Manns. "Getting my master's from UMUC has taken me in a very good direction and opened a lot of doors. Right now, I'm looking to expand my roles in different areas in different organizations. I know that I have the confidence in what I do, so I have a lot more options open to me."

Among the motivators driving his professional growth, Manns and his wife Kristina Manns are expecting their second child in April of 2018.