For too long, our nation has attempted to improve health by focusing primarily on the health-care system. To truly achieve health equity, where everyone — regardless of race, neighborhood, or financial status — has the opportunity for health, we must also consider the broader determinants of health, including community environment, education, employment, housing, income, and public safety.
That is why PolicyLink and FSG are thrilled to launch the Ambassadors for Health Equity Fellowship, a new initiative to connect innovative and inspiring leaders to mentorship, education, and opportunities for collaboration around advancing systemic solutions in health equity.
Over the course of a year, this cohort of 13 national leaders in the public, private, and social sectors will participate in five in-person meetings, a series of webinars, and ongoing online engagement that will empower them to share ideas and experiences, forge new alliances, generate new solutions, and promote health equity within their own work. Ambassadors will also apply the skills and connections gained through this fellowship to a specific project tied to their work as part of an ongoing commitment to foster practices in their own organizations that advance health equity.
This fellowship is funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation as part of its Open Box initiative, which seeks to advance health equity by convening leaders from a variety of sectors to promote policies, practices, and systems that offer opportunities for everyone to pursue a healthier life. Building a Culture of Health means focusing on the grander whole of what being healthy and staying healthy means: ensuring students are ready to learn, workers are able to be productive, and families can thrive across every community.
By motivating leaders to work toward this common goal, the Open Box project and the Ambassadors for Health Equity Fellowship hope to shift thinking away from the view of inequity as an intractable problem and toward solutions that build health equity, especially within low-income communities and communities of color that face the greatest health disparities.
The Ambassadors for Health Equity Fellowship will run through June of 2017, and will feature the leaders listed below. For more information, check out the fellowship launch page.
- James Bell – Founder and President, W. Haywood Burns Institute
- Jeff Chang – Journalist, author, and music critic
- Shawn Dove – Chief Executive Officer, Campaign for Black Male Achievement
- Denise G. Fairchild – President and Chief Executive Officer, Emerald Cities
- Radhika Fox – Chief Executive Officer, US Water Alliance
- Ana Garcia-Ashley – Executive Director, Gamaliel Network
- Sarah Kastelic – Executive Director, National Indian Child Welfare Association
- Otho E. Kerr III – Partner, Encourage Capital
- Steven McCullough – Chief Operating Officer, Communities in Schools, Inc.
- Nela Richardson – Chief Economist, Redfin
- Tynesia Boyea Robinson – President and CEO at Reliance Methods and author of Just Change: How to Collaborate for Lasting Impact
- Michael Skolnik – Business executive, entrepreneur, and film producer
- Blair Taylor – Former CEO, MBK Alliance
Health Equity Experts