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Snohomish Health District Media Releases

Posted on: July 18, 2018

Snohomish Health District to Participate in The Kresge Foundation’s Emerging Leaders in Public Healt

SNOHOMISH COUNTY, Wash. – Two team members from the Snohomish Health District have been selected to be part of the third cohort of The Kresge Foundation’s Emerging Leaders in Public Health initiative. Administrator Jefferson Ketchel and health policy analyst Nicole Thomsen will be working together to help transform the role of public health in Snohomish County and the region.

Kresge’s Emerging Leaders in Public Health was designed to provide public health leaders of county and local health departments with the opportunity to gain additional knowledge and build skills to address the challenges public health professionals face in their communities. The initiative is designed to develop local public health leaders in pairs, and each pair includes the health officer or top executive and a future leader from the public health agency.

“Public health leaders are valuable assets to our communities,” said Dr. Phyllis Meadows, senior advisor to The Kresge Foundation’s Health Program and the Emerging Leaders in Public Health lead. “Leaders in this program will have the opportunity to create meaningful and lasting change in their agencies that will positively impact those they serve.” 

During the program, the two will participate in an action-oriented program focused on the design and implementation of a transformative concept that shifts or expands the capacity of their local department. The proposal submitted by Ketchel and Thomsen is a project focused on more fully utilizing a shared services model for providing public health programming. They will also receive a grant up to $125,000, as well as coaching and technical assistance to evolve their ideas into action.

“This is a tremendous honor for Nicole and Jeff, and we are excited to see what the next 18 months will bring for them and the agency,” said Adrienne Fraley-Monillas, chair of the District’s Board of Health. “Not only will the two of them grow professionally while working on an important project, but the Snohomish Health District will also benefit immensely.”

Ketchel and Thomsen join 19 other teams from across the country—including another Washington team from Yakima Health District—selected to participate in the third cohort of Emerging Leaders in Public Health. Collectively, the 20 health departments represented by cohort leaders serve nearly 10 million community members in cities in the United States.

The team will also join a growing community of public health leaders supported by The Kresge Foundation, including teams at Public Health – Seattle & King County and Spokane Regional Health District last year. Since 2015, 64 public health leaders have been trained through Emerging Leaders in Public Health. With the addition of Cohort III, Kresge meets its goal of providing leadership development and resources to more than 100 local, public health leaders across the country so that they can approach public health in a new way.

The Kresge Foundation was founded in 1924 to promote human progress. Today, Kresge fulfills that mission by building and strengthening pathways to opportunity for low-income people in America’s cities, seeking to dismantle structural and systemic barriers to equality and justice. Using a full array of grant, loan, and other investment tools, Kresge invests more than $160 million annually to foster economic and social change. For more information, visit

The Snohomish Health District works for a safer and healthier community through disease prevention, health promotion, and protection from environmental threats. To read more about the District and for important health information, visit

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