Board Application

Health Forward is seeking candidates for three board positions for terms beginning in January 2022.

In selecting members for the Health Forward Board of Directors, rigorous candidate consideration is given to ensure that selected candidates meet the qualifications outlined below and align with foundation values.

Important deadlines and mandatory interview dates:
July 1–Aug. 31: Open application period
Oct. 6–7: First round of in-person interviews
Mid-October: Status notification
Dec. 8: Final interview at full board meeting

The process for electing directors was established by the Missouri Attorney General when Health Forward was created in 2003. The process requires time and steps that go beyond those that are usually involved in recruiting candidates for board service. However, it ensures that leadership emerges from qualified candidates who are diverse in gender, race and ethnicity, culture, service area geography, expertise, and who possess the greatest alignment with Health Forward’s current direction.

The Community Advisory Committee (CAC) oversees this significant task. The CAC is a 24-member group that is appointed by various elected officials throughout Health Forward’s service area. The CAC Nominating Committee is charged with soliciting and vetting applications, conducting preliminary interviews, and recommending a slate of nominees — at least two for each open slot —to the board of directors for final interviews and selection. The CAC is required to approve the final selection of candidates elected by the board.

Candidates who have expertise or sincere interest in improving the health of resilient communities are encouraged to apply. It is important that applicants understand that Health Forward possesses a broad view of health that recognizes that health is shaped by the social, economic, and environmental conditions. Accordingly, to improve health and health outcomes, Health Forward applies three key levers – leadership, advocacy, and resources – to address not only health care, but a broad range of social factors. 

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging Commitment

Health Forward is committed to the principles of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging as core to our values and vision for community partnership. We define the following based on language from the Independent Sector:

  • Diversity includes all the ways in which people differ, encompassing the different characteristics that make one individual or group different from another. While diversity is often used in reference to race, ethnicity, and gender, we embrace a broader definition of diversity that also includes age, national origin, religion, ability (physical and developmental), sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, education, marital status, language, and physical appearance. Our definition also includes diversity of thought: ideas, perspectives, and values. We also recognize that individuals affiliate with multiple identities.
  • Equity is the fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all people, while at the same time striving to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of some groups. Improving equity involves increasing justice and fairness within the procedures and processes of institutions or systems, as well as in their distribution of resources. Tackling equity issues requires an understanding of the root causes of outcome disparities within our society.
  • Inclusion is the act of creating environments in which any individual or group can be and feel welcomed, respected, supported, and valued to fully participate. An inclusive and welcoming climate embraces differences and offers respect in words and actions for all people. It is important to note that while an inclusive group is by definition diverse, a diverse group is not always inclusive. Increasingly, recognition of unconscious or implicit bias helps organizations to be deliberate about addressing issues of inclusivity.
  • Belonging is the feeling of security and support when there is a sense of identity acceptance, inclusion, and value for a member of a certain group or place. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are prerequisites for belonging.

Health Forward directors serve without pay for a three-year term. Directors may be re-elected by the board for a second, three-year term. 

Conflict of Interest
Health Forward has a strong commitment to integrity. All who join the organization as associates or board members are asked to declare any conflicts that would compromise the ability to be objective in decision-making. While we welcome members of the community who have ties to our grant work, there will be restrictions on those board members’ ability to vote on or discuss any items that would constitute a conflict of interest. Please note, affiliation with a current or future grantee of Heath Forward neither helps nor harms that organization. No board member can personally benefit financially from any grant or contract work with Health Forward Foundation.

Public officials are not eligible to serve as directors. For purposes of this exclusion, public official means any elected or appointed officer or employee (other than those who serve without compensation) of any city, county, state, or federal government, or has governmental policy-making authority. Any director who chooses to run for election to public office must resign as a board member upon filing documents declaring his or her candidacy.

All board members are required annually to complete and submit an attestation and statement of personal interests, which is outlined in the conflict of interest policy.

Meetings and Attendance
Board meetings are currently held six times a year on the fourth Wednesday of even months from 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. at Health Forward Foundation. A virtual attendance option is always provided.

Note: Health Forward’s board of directors is currently reevaluating the frequency of board and committee meetings, therefore, board meeting dates and times may change in 2022. 

Board members are invited to serve on two committees (time commitment for each committee varies). Members are expected to maintain at least 60 percent meeting attendance for both board and committee appointments, many of which meet six times per year. 

It is customary for board members to spend at least 2-4 hours each month attending board or committee meetings. In addition, board members also spend time reading material in preparation for these meetings.

Number of Candidates
This year, the Community Advisory Committee expects to submit a slate consisting of at least six candidates to fill the three board openings. During the December 2021 full board meeting, the board will elect new members from those nominated.

Timeline and Process
The CAC Nominating Committee opens the application and recruitment process to identify candidates in July. Applicants are asked to complete an application and submit a current résumé by Aug. 31, 2021.

During September and October, the committee will review applications and select applicants for interviews that will take place Oct. 6 and 7 at Health Forward. Interviews will be in-person, with a virtual option. These interviews with applicants will be video recorded and made available to current board members as an aid to their selection process in December.

Recorded interviews are for internal decision-making purposes only. Health Forward adheres to Missouri Open Meetings Law, which requires that Health Forward, when requested, will also provide public access to the written and recorded materials.

The committee will identify a slate of nominees following the first round of interviews in October. All candidates will be notified of their status by mid-October. Current board members will then review the nominees’ application packet along with the recorded interview. Nominees will be briefly interviewed in-person or virtually by the board of directors at the meeting on Dec. 8, and the directors will cast their votes that same day.

Election results will be communicated to nominated candidates within 48 hours of the final board vote and ratification by the CAC. New directors will participate in orientation prior to taking office at the February 2022 board meeting.


  • Must be at least 18 years of age and a resident of the City of Kansas City, Missouri, and/or the following three counties in Missouri (Cass, Jackson, or Lafayette) or a Kansas resident, taxpayer, property owner, or business owner in one of the following three counties in Kansas (Johnson, Wyandotte, or Allen). These six counties constitute the Health Forward Foundation service area.
  • Each director will be expected to contribute perspective in one or more of the following areas: uninsured and underinsured consumers of health care services; access to health care; health promotion and education; health care quality and outcome improvement; health care needs of women, children, people who are elderly, disabled, or low-income; and communities of color; or general issues of public health. 
  • Preferred knowledge, expertise, education, or experience in one or more of the following: accounting/auditing; behavioral health; organizational management; community-based organizations; economic and workforce development; diversity, equity, and inclusion; policy/civic engagement; communications; housing or community development; education; government; investment management; legal; health care/delivery; public health; real estate; research/evaluation; or rural issues.
  • Must have a commitment to racial equity and economic justice.
  • Must have demonstrated core leadership attributes.
  • Must have a recognized reputation for integrity and competence.
  • Must have demonstrated an ability to devote the time necessary to fulfill board responsibilities and regularly attend meetings.
  • Must have demonstrated an ability to understand and appreciate the role and responsibility of a public health care philanthropic foundation and the need to balance various constituency interests.
  • Must have demonstrated a personal interest in, and concern for, the public health and welfare of those most in need throughout Health Forward’s six-county service area, and a commitment to accomplishing the overall mission, purposes, and goals.

Application Deadline
Qualified candidates are asked to complete the online application below. Applicants must also submit a .PDF document of their most current résumé (no more than 5 pages). You may upload your résumé at the end of the application using the “Choose file” button.

All materials must be submitted on or before Aug. 31, 2021.

For questions or concerns, please contact

Additional information regarding Health Forward can be found in our annual report.

Health Forward Foundation
2300 Main Street, Suite 304
Kansas City, MO 64108
(816) 241-7006