The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation announced the 10th group of emerging community health leaders selected for the Massachusetts Institute for Community Health Leadership program. Kevin Conner, Director of Food Service at Community Servings, the Jamaica Plain-based nonprofit provider of medically tailored meals, is among the participants.
The MICHL program brings together professionals who currently direct or manage programs at a variety of health care organizations across Massachusetts for a series of classroom, peer-to-peer and professional learning opportunities.
“The goal for the MICHL program is to help participants increase their own personal impact, strengthen their effectiveness in their organization, and enhance their respective organization’s influence in addressing challenges and opportunities in today’s increasingly complex health care environment,” said Audrey Shelto, president of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation.
The MICHL class of 2018-19 – sponsored in part by a new partner, The Boston Foundation – is comprised of 18 participants from state agencies, hospitals, nonprofit community health centers, mental health providers, and advocacy groups serving low-income and uninsured individuals and families. The participants, selected through an application process, represent the 10th MICHL cohort since the program began in 2006. The program has more than 150 graduates.
In addition to connecting with leaders in community health and local hospitals, MICHL participants gain access to expert and committed faculty who introduce new practices, strategies and leadership skills. In recent years, the MICHL program has explored the impact of racism in the nation’s health care system.
“Being a leader in the United States in the 21st century means understanding the impact of structural and institutional racism on health, health care, and public health,” said Michael McCormack, deputy director of leadership at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, who leads the MICHL program for the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation. “Health care and public health improvement strategies often target the symptoms of structural racism, without naming racism, and without the leadership required to change systems that continue to incur advantage and disadvantage based on race – thus the integration of this important issue into the MICHL curriculum.”
The 2018-19 MICHL participants are:
Bethany Allen, Program Director, Peer Health Exchange
G. Leo Blandford, Director of Community Based Coordinated Care, Outer Cape Health Services
Stephanie Campbell, Acting Director, Office of Sexual Health and Youth Development, Mass. Department of Public Health
Maria Celli, Director of Social Services, Brockton Neighborhood Health Center
Mika Cheng, Program Director, Commonwealth Care Alliance
Kevin Conner, Director of Food Service, Community Servings
Jamie Gaynes, Government Relations Specialist, Boston Children’s Hospital
Amy Glynn, Senior Program Consultant, Commonwealth Care Alliance
Sophie Hansen, Political Director, National Association of Social Workers, Mass. Chapter
Mary Kate Little, Program Manager, Bowdoin St Health Center
Shannon Merrell, Director, Practice Services, Centering Health Care Institute
Niurka Pitts, Director of Housing, Boston Public Health Commission
Katie Riconda, Director of Prevention and Screening, AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod
Mark Scott, Program Director, Trauma Response and Recovery, Boston Public Health Commission
Mahader Tamene, Senior Project Manager, Boston Medical Center
Kristi Taylor, Program Manager, Vinfen
Uyen Tran, Specialty Practice Manager, DotHouse Health Center
Josefina Wendel, Director, Population Health Initiative, Cambridge Health Alliance