Tina Turner has been the Ohio State Office of Rural Health Director for the past four years. Prior to that she served as the FLEX Program Coordinator for seven years.

In your position as Director of the Ohio SORH, what three skills are most important in order to do your job efficiently?

  1. Creativity is important while trying to deliver quality and well needed projects to the Ohio rural communities with a small operating budget.
  2. Ability to identify gaps in services and resources to assist with linking common programs and stakeholders together to collaborate and share services and resources.
  3. Communication is important with my internal and external partners. I work within the Ohio Department of Health which have various health care, prevention and educational programs that we share with our stakeholders. Staying informed and involved with what other ODH programs are doing allows me to share valuable information with our rural stakeholders.

As Director what is your biggest challenge?

My biggest challenge as a leader in rural health is that many times the area of health concern has the least amount of funding and resources available. Rural communities and health care providers identify challenges and concerns years before they become a federal budgeting priority, in most case. However, the lack and absence of funding doesn’t make the challenge or concern go away and you must use creative ideas and partnerships to address them.

What do you like best about your job? 

I love the variety of my responsibilities from seeking and attaining funding, creating and evaluating programs, conference planning, managing budgets, programs and staff, linking stakeholders together, witnessing clinics and hospitals improve their financial, operational and quality functions, and improving the health of all Ohioans in rural areas.