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Sierra Health Foundation Health Leadership Program

A message from Sierra Health Foundation


Greetings from Sierra Health Foundation!

HLP logo

As we move into fall, we are pleased to connect with you to share Health Leadership Alumni Network news. We hope you enjoy reading about the continuing Health Leadership Program and what your Alumni Network colleagues are doing. As you will see below, Class XII begins soon, we are getting ready for the next Alumni Network event and Alumni Network members have much to report about their work.

Since 2001, the Health Leadership Program has supported 288 health and social service executives in developing their skills to lead their organizations and communities. We remain committed to the Health Leadership Program and the Alumni Network, and are pleased to support the development of individual leaders and capacity building of organizations that work to make our communities healthier for all.

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Join us for the next Alumni event on Oct. 26


Please plan to join us on Oct. 26 at Sierra Health Foundation for our Alumni Network fall session! This will be a day of peer-to-peer discussion and learning, with a highly interactive discussion of leadership challenges currently facing alumni members. In this session alumni members will:

  • share leadership challenges
  • offer and receive strategy advice and coaching
  • connect with new aspects of the current Health Leadership Program

Download the draft agenda.

Register online now!

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Health Leadership Program Class XII begins


We’re pleased to welcome 24 members to Health Leadership Program Class XII, which begins on Sept. 30. Class members are current or emerging leaders in organizations that work to improve community health and well-being and reduce health disparities across a broad range of issue areas such as education, employment, access to health services, population health, social services, environment, housing, youth development and juvenile justice. The 2015-2016 program will focus on improved organizational outcomes and impact.

See the Class XII member list on the Health Leadership Program web page.

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Stay connected!


The Health Leadership Program Alumni Network is a valuable resource for the 288 leaders who have completed the program since 2001. Stay connected through Facebook, the HLP Member Dashboard and by attending Alumni Network events. Visit the HLP web page for a list of Alumni members.

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Alumni updates


Paula Bosler, Class III
Veterans Administration

Photo of Paula Bosler

I am living in Reno, Nevada, working for the Veterans Administration. I spent the previous years in Landstuhl, Germany, providing mental health services to the active duty military returning from war zones. I am currently starting a new program at the Reno VA Hospital called the Medical Foster Home Program. I have used all the skills I learned at the Sierra Health Foundation leadership training both in my current position as the Medical Foster Home Coordinator, and also as the VA Re-Entry Specialist, assisting veterans who are incarcerated.

Brian Broadway, Class X
Business and Community Liaison
Sacramento Job Corps Center

Photo of Brian Broadway

Representatives from Sacramento Job Corps participated in the Job Corps 50th Anniversary Gala event held April 21 at the Mellon Auditorium in Washington, D.C. The celebration honored graduates who completed the program during Job Corps’ five decades of service. In the picture are Onisha Redd, Congressman Ami Bera, Will Hampton, Lucy Falmed, Brian Broadway and Sharon Murphy.

Sac Job Corps photo

Dana Campbell, Class IV
Fiscal Officer
Butte County Community Action Agency

Photo of Dana Campbell

Proud to be halfway through law school!

Rachel Farrell, Class VI
Executive Director
Harmony Health Medical Clinic and Family Resource Center

Photo of Rachel Farrell

I wanted to let everyone know that the Medical Clinic was accepted as a Federally Qualified Health Center. This is a game changer for us! For a while I thought I was leading my staff down a rabbit hole by doing the change of ownership from a for-profit to a nonprofit, we almost went bankrupt about 6 times! Needless to say, this new designation is a huge relief and validation of risk-taking for the greater good (everything I learned at Sierra Health Foundation, thank you)!

Heather Frank, Class VIII
Assistant Director of Development
Jewish Community Center of San Francisco

Photo of Heather Frank

I moved back to Oakland in 2012 and took a job running the institutional giving program at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco. I recently accepted the position of Assistant Director of Development and am happily putting together budgets and strategic plans, eating burritos, and calming my earthquake-traumatized cats.

Andrew Frishman, Class IX
Co-Executive Director
Big Picture Learning

Photo of Andrew Frishman

Andrew is privileged to collaborate with an amazing team across the U.S. and around the world, working to transform the education system, to empower young people through innovative, personalized learning environments that work in tandem with the “real world” of their greater community. He has settled with his family in Cambridge, MA, and hopes that HLPers will give a shout if they’re in town, as he’d be happy to treat them to a “rootbeer.”

Lourdes Gonzalez, Class VII
Psychiatric Specialist II
Mono County Behavioral Health

Photo of Lourdes Gonzalez

Greetings to all Alumni Network members. I would like to take this opportunity to share some updates regarding my professional development:

  • Accepted the Psychiatric Specialist II position at Mono County Behavioral Health
  • Continue providing presentations on Cultural Competence on the Latino/Hispanic community
  • Provide court mediation services for Mono and Inyo counties

Thank you to the Sierra Health Foundation staff and facilitators for your wonderful support and dedicated services to our diverse communities throughout the years.

John Gordon, Class XI
Board Member
Galt Joint Union Elementary School District

Photo of John Gordon

This summer, the Galt Youth Commission successfully advocated for a sharps take back program in the city of Galt. City council approved the concept and an ordinance is currently being drafted for adoption in the fall. The leadership principles learned through the Health Leadership Program are being passed onto the younger generation as I continue to work with teens in the Galt Youth Commission.

Laura Heintz, Class VI
Chief Executive Officer
Stanford Youth Solutions

Photo of Laura Heintz

I am the CEO at Stanford Youth Solutions (since 2012). I am also the President of the Association of Behavioral Health Contractors in Sacramento County. In addition, I am traveling across the country with the Annie E. Casey Foundation through the Provider Exchange assisting states and individual organizations to transform from an over-reliance on group home care to providing a full continuum of care focused on youth living in families in the community.

Leona Jull, Class III

Photo of Leona Jull

I will finish my BA in Social Sciences in December with concentrations in Psychology, Criminal Justice and Political Science, then on to my master’s degree in Forensic Psychology. In January I would like to return to the workforce addressing mental illness, so if you have employment opportunities coming available please keep me in mind.

Meghan Kehoe, Class XI
Children and Youth Division Manager
Center for Domestic Peace

Photo of Meghan Kehoe

Meghan has been hired as the new Children and Youth Division Manager at Center for Domestic Peace in Marin County. This newly created division is working to help children who have witnessed domestic violence heal from trauma and assist youth and young adults in the community through violence prevention efforts and crisis response.

Richard Knecht, Class I
Placer County Children’s System of Care

Photo of Richard Knecht

Richard has accepted a one-year opportunity to provide internal consultation and change management to the state Departments of Health Care Services and Social Services as they implement reforms to their systems, in order to better serve California’s child welfare and probation youth.

Laura Leonelli, Class V
Grants Manager, California Reducing Disparities Project
Office of Health Equity

Photo of Laura Leonelli

I started a position a month ago as a Grants Manager for the California Reducing Disparities Project, funded by the Mental Health Services Act. I worked on the strategic plan for this project and am very excited to be part of its implementation. Grant solicitations have recently been released, and as a former grantee it is enlightening to learn the process from the other end.

Betty Low, Class III
Director, Student Development Journey Program
TRIO Student Support Services Program
American River College

Photo of Betty Low

We were just awarded re-funding from the U.S. Department of Education for another five-year cycle of TRIO Student Support Services for our existing Journey Program!! In addition, we were granted two additional NEW grants to focus our support services to ARC students studying in the STEM field and our military veteran students. We will continue to provide focused support services to community college students who are first generation college, low-income, and/or students with disabilities with these three Student Support Services Programs!! A total of $3.3 million in direct services to students at ARC!

DonnaJo Machado-Reed, Class X

Photo of DonnaJo Machado-Reed

I have left HOPE Ministries after 13 years. I’m back to school full time for my BA. I’ve been asked to start a new nonprofit so my work and ideas with helping the homeless can continue.

Homero Mejia, Class IX
Executive Director
Congregations Building Community

Photo of Homero_Mejia

It is with great joy that I announce the start of a new faith-community engagement campaign, “Year of Encounter,” through Congregations Building Community. It is a program that will begin conversations within the larger faith community around building deeper relationships with one another and with all people in our parishes and community who feel the pain of exclusion, while at the same time developing leadership and institutional cooperation.

Michael Minnick, Class VIII

Photo of Michael Minnick

Michael recently founded FOCUS LOCAL, a consulting firm aimed at supporting communities by helping nonprofits, schools, businesses and policymakers create opportunities that are aligned with what the community wants. Current projects range from neighborhood resident engagement to strengthening the local independent music scene.

Maureen Price, Class I

Photo of Maureen Price

Maureen recently retired from her position as CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Sacramento to have more personal time and to pursue professional interests as a consultant. She is interested in working with nonprofit leaders and organizations on board development, leadership development, executive coaching and mentoring, resource development planning, strategic planning and organizational growth and development.

Kathi Toepel, Class X
Associate Director
Common Ground Senior Services

Photo of Kathi Toepel

In 2014, Kathi joined the staff at Common Ground Senior Services, which serves older adults in Calaveras and Amador counties, as the Associate Director. Her main duty is development. Kathi’s passion for the past 10 years has been to develop transportation options for older adults residing in rural counties. Over the past year, she has been able to secure more than $500,000 to purchase vehicles that will transport older adults, veterans and the disabled to health and wellness appointments, in and out of county. Common Ground recently placed more than 50 frail older adults in hotels and other places after they were evacuated from their homes due to the Butte Fire that destroyed more than 600 homes. Additionally, the agency provided them with Meals on Wheels, gas and credit cards, and medical equipment they required.

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