Want/need to read: With school there is a never ending pile of research articles, books, and general geeky reading that I need/want to do. Also, Quint Studer spoke at our conference in November and we all got a copy of “A Culture of High Performance” which I haven’t gotten to yet. I want to finish BJ Novak’s “One More Thing” when I have time for a lighter read.

Favorite blogs: I read the Daily Yonder and The Health Care Blog when I can; my favorites though are always from The New Yorker.

Twitter: I am new to Twitter so I am still learning a lot (and open to suggestions). Mostly I follow news sites or our partners in the state. I definitely enjoy catching odd news on Slate or odd places on Atlas Obscura.

  1. What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a SORH leader?

I am doing 3 things to develop as a SORH leader.

I attended the ORHP Rural Voices meeting that brought grantees from a wide variety of backgrounds to work on leadership development.

I am working on my PhD in health services, policy and management at the School of Public Health, which is one of 7 rural research centers across the nation

I also serve on the NOSORH board and just transitioned to the Region B Representative.

What skill sets do you think SORH staff need—and how did you achieve them?
I feel strongly that SORH leaders need to have passion for what you do. You need to be committed in an intrinsic way with a positive outlook with lots of patience and flexibility. We worked on community paramedicine project recently. We worked with a community and worked at the state level to help program.  We would make one step forward and then one or two steps back.  You have to stay committed and be an advocate.  You have to see things through to the end with perseverance and positive attitude.  Our communities see us as committed leaders.

What are three great things about rural health in your state? What are the current challenges?

Our state office is a leader in our state.  We have to credit Graham for creating a place for us at the table.  There is a lot of innovation in our state.  Rural communities are test beds of innovation.  We really get to do a lot of face-to-face work in our rural communities, which helps spur innovations since we get to do one-on-one work.  The people that we work with are a true inspiration.  I love going out to the communities and helping providers making sure their communities have healthcare.  We get to be their coach, extra pair of hands, or shoulder to cry on.  This is what gets me out of bed each day.