Presenting the Power of Collaboration


Presenting the Power of Collaboration
January 17, 2018 9:08 pm

A panel featuring Shoshanna Spector of Interdisciplinary Research Leaders and participants from three of RWJF’s other leadership development programs took center stage at the American Public Health Association (APHA) Annual Meeting, the nation’s largest gathering of people working to advance public health, in Atlanta on Nov. 6.

The panel, moderated by RWJF’s John Lumpkin, senior vice president/program, highlighted the need and opportunity for public health to work with people from many other sectors to improve community conditions for health. Panelists also spoke—with great conviction—about the unique nature of the leadership programs to help them collaborate with people from other sectors, linking fields from transportation to labor relations to health.

Shoshanna Spector is part of a team working to reduce over-incarceration and to mitigate the impact of over-incarceration on children. “Our goal is to cut incarceration in half and double access to pre-K,” Shoshanna, executive director of the faith organizing nonprofit IndyCAN, told the APHA audience. “You can’t do that by writing a policy paper. The unique thing about Interdisciplinary Research Leaders is that it pairs community organizing with research to build community power and change policy.”

Lumpkin concluded the panel by asking each speaker to share who had most influenced them during their time in their respective programs. The answer was unanimous: the other people in the programs, who inspired them with creative solutions to pressing problems, exposed them to new ways of thinking, and opened access to research and new approaches they hadn’t had access to before.

For more information about all the programs, including a tool to help determine which program might be right for you or someone you know, please visit the RWJF Program Finder.