Driven by her passion, Herlena O. Washington began her professional path with the United States Navy in 1981, rising to the position of lieutenant commander by the time she retired in 2007. Having served as a hospital administrator for most of her time in the Navy, she concluded that tenure with the Naval Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida, from 2003 to 2007. Her current career began in 2002, when she became the president of Christ Sanctuary Ministry. Following the completion to two associate degrees and a Bachelor of Arts, Ms. Washington earned a Master of Science in management from Troy University, a doctoral degree in ministerial education and evangelism from Truth Baptist Bible College, and certification as a licensed clinical pastoral counselor.
In 2014, Ms. Washington obtained a Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix, and the same year, she founded Christ Sanctuary Ministries, Inc., where she continues to excel as administrator, president and chief executive officer. Feeling blessed to be able to do work she is passionate about, she attributes much of her success to her faith and trust in God. She has leveraged her expertise in management to grow Christ Sanctuary Ministries and hopes to see the ministry continue to grow and touch more people in the coming years. Alongside her primary responsibilities, Ms. Washington has also donated her time as an undergraduate adviser for women at Edward Waters University and is involved in a variety of charitable endeavors to feed the homeless and provide toys to disadvantaged children.
Affiliated with the Jacksonville chapter of the National Naval Officers Association, Ms. Washington also maintains active membership with the American Association of Christian Counselors and holds leadership positions within the Florida Veterans Hall of Fame Society and the Duval Academy. For her excellence, she has been the recipient of a number of honors and accolades both for her military service and her community service. Most notable among these being her induction into the Florida Veterans Hall of Fame by Gov. Rick Scott in 2018. Ms. Washington’s more recent accolades include nomination for the Jacksonville Image Award in 2022 and receiving the Positively Jax Award in 2020, among many others.