The 38-year-old Colorado Springs native is the new community outreach director and is responsible for helping Memorial Hospital and University of Colorado Health develop relationships with organizations, communities, neighborhoods, groups and individuals.
The job keeps her connected to her hometown, growing her involvement with local groups and organizations where Memorial might make a difference. Part of that job is getting the word out that — after years of uncertainty — the hospital system is moving in the right direction, she says.
What is your major role at Memorial as community outreach coordinator?
As Memorial’s community outreach director, I am primarily responsible helping Memorial Hospital, and our parent organization University of Colorado Health, develop partnerships with organizations, communities, neighborhoods, groups and individuals.
The community outreach director position is a new role at Memorial. Although Memorial is the largest local employer outside of the military, we have not necessarily been an active and engaged community member in ways that we should, in part because we faced so many challenges related to uncertainty about our future and our ownership.
Last August, voters overwhelmingly approved leasing Memorial to University of Colorado Health, establishing a promising future for Memorial in our community. Memorial is now part of a nationally recognized, Colorado-based health system that holds community involvement as one of its core values.
What are some of the challenges of your job?
Health care is changing every day. Staying abreast of that change, whether it is technology, health care reform or government regulations, is challenging. Memorial is also in a state of change as it shifts from being a stand-alone hospital to being part of a large Front Range health care system. Keeping up with that frenetic pace can be demanding.
What do you like best about working in health care?
There is no greater satisfaction than supporting a mission in which we help the people of southern Colorado in their time of need. Memorial is part of the fabric of Colorado Springs. We’ve been there for families during the most important moments of their lives. That may be the birth of a child or a grandfather’s open-heart surgery. It’s an honor to be a part of that.
Will the changing health care landscape affect your job?
Health care reform will affect everyone who works in this industry. How these reforms play out on a local level is still unknown. In the coming months, I hope to help Memorial create and re-establish relationships in the community that will help southern Colorado navigate these changes and build a healthier community.