As I reflect on the teams of people and communities I’ve collaborated with and the impact I’ve been able to influence over the years, it is the work of Health Forward Foundation that has inspired me to consider the legacy that I want to leave for those whom I love and love me. Engaging in work that lifts the tide for those who need it most knowing that it raises the opportunity for all, gives me the greatest satisfaction.
It is this purposed that led me to the Health Forward Foundation, but this is not my beginning. I have served the nonprofit community for more than 25 years. From my first entry-level position in youth development programs in 1995 to my current role, I have developed a rich heart for servant leadership.
Over the last 15 years as a senior leader/executive, I’ve helped create and implement strategy, championed inclusive initiatives, and led exceptional teams of people. It is with great enthusiasm that I continue this service with Health Forward Foundation, which aspires to be a national model of health equity through economic inclusion focused on addressing health injustices and centering racial equity.
In my role as Health Forward’s director of community investment and impact, I am tasked with growing the understanding and catalyzing action around racial and health equity. Although I started working here in early May, I have already recognized that I am blessed to lead a strong team that guides funding support toward racial equity implementation and training for grantees in our communities.
This work is increasingly important and will lead to stronger voices from communities of color and those that suffer economic marginalization and will create more equitable spaces and places.
I thrive when immersed in my passion of creating and supporting the needs of the community. I feel my greatest attributes are my ability to hold space for listening, responding, and designing support and teams that meet people where they are and act as a guide along the way.
A quote that reminds me of my purpose in the moment is:
“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek. ” — Barack Obama
As the pandemic begins to wind down and more in-person contact becomes more feasible, I look forward to meeting and working with the organizations that are helping build this change within our communities.