The past 18 months have revealed much about the gaps in our health care, as well as the systemic inequities that impact both the health system and society as a whole. As a practicing clinician, community organizer, and former middle school science teacher, I’ve seen both up close—and I am able to bring this unique background to my work at MOBE, where I can work towards health equity on the ground, both in the Twin Cities community, and the country at large.
This past September, I sat amongst a group of incredible Minneapolis women in the healthcare industry and was honored to be named a recipient of the Women’s Health Leadership TRUST award. Each year, the TRUST Forum recognizes women and companies in health care who boldly transform the industry in remarkable ways. The forum draws more than 800 attendees (virtual and in-person) each year to celebrate the women impacting and advancing health care in our communities.
My journey has not been a straight path—but in hindsight, I can see that it was always about education, and helping people achieve equitable health outcomes through increasing access to the support they need.
My career began on the north side of Minneapolis, as a middle school science teacher working with Teach for America. While seeking to inspire and engage students by designing hands-on experiments, introducing successful scientists from culturally diverse backgrounds, and discussing accomplished women in the field, I also saw firsthand how health inequities affect my students and their families. One incident that sticks with me to this day is a student of mine having a parent pass away from diabetes complications. It was this moment that made me realize the deep need for better health education and care delivery and the incredibly positive impact that health care providers—just like educators in the classroom—can have on underrepresented communities. That moment inspired me to become a pharmacist, where I would be able to interact with and help my neighbors learn how to best care for their health.
Fast forward a few years, and I was serving the same community I did as a teacher, but as a clinical pharmacist in a primary care clinic. I witnessed the impact of social determinants of health firsthand, and I found myself again wanting to do more. I was on a mission to find a way to make a broader, lasting positive impact on communities and was curious about how technology and data science could be applied to population health, to identify and support those most in need of care.
That’s when I found MOBE and its incredible Medication Services team. MOBE was putting those ideas to work toward the same goals I felt called to pursue. Today, as MOBE’s Program Outcomes Manager of Medication Services, I support a team that’s uniquely positioned at the nexus of personal wellbeing, population health, and data science. We are continuously achieving an ideal that has proven elusive for too long: healthier outcomes for people who, to date, have struggled with their health despite frequent engagement with the health system. MOBE’s unique model combines data science, machine learning, digital health, and a novel one-to-one personalized approach. Our mission to help people live happier, healthier lives is incredibly refreshing—and by design, advances diversity, equity, and inclusion within the healthcare sector.
I’m also proud to serve as Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at MOBE. I not only have the opportunity to help build a workplace centered on thoughtful inclusivity, but also advance a health and wellness solution that enables more equitable health outcomes for the MOBE participant population -- regardless of race, ethnicity, gender and gender identity, sexual orientation, age and life experience, creed, religion, class, nationality, language, and physical and mental state.
Throughout this journey, one common thread has rung true—we all have the power, within ourselves and through collaboration, to create a better world for our communities.
If you are interested in learning more about MOBE’s Medication Services team, or how we’re advancing DE&I through our work, please reach out to me on LinkedIn here! And, tune into September’s awardee video. If you’re a student at the University of Minnesota, I’ll be presenting at a College of Pharmacy Seminar on November 4—hope to see you there!