Welcome to OHE
Dulce Díez, MPH, MCHESDirector
Christine EspinelProgram Manager, Partnerships and Community Engagement
Brittney Okada, MPH, CHESProgram Manager, Health Equity Epidemiology and Evaluation
Leonardo D. Buniak, MSFHealth Equity Economic Analyst
Jill Christian, MPH, CHESCOVID Community Partnership Project Coordinator
Ally Cowdell, MSW, MPH, CPHCOVID Community Partnership Project Coordinator - Mental Health Specialist
Kyle DoubravaCommunications Specialist
Roxanna GularteHealth Equity Program Coordinator
Feli Anne Hipol, MPHHealth Equity Program Specialist
Deepani Jinadasa, MPHHealth Equity Epidemiologist
Annika Machado, RNCOVID-19 Health Disparities Coordinator
Tasmia Mostafiz, MPHHealth Equity Epidemiologist
Ban Naes, MPHHealth Equity Program Specialist - The Embrace Project
Shannon RobinsonHealth Equity Epidemiologist
Teresa Sanchez, MAHealth Equity Program Specialist
Jada StelmachOffice Specialist
Breck TrawickHealth Equity Program Coordinator
History of OHE
In 2003, a group of community advocates came together and worked with Utah legislators to create a program within the Utah Department of Health that will focus on health-related issues within Utah’s multicultural populations with special emphasis on racial and ethnic minorities. That is how, during the 2004 legislative session, the Center for Multicultural Health was created by statute.
In the 2011 legislative session the Center for Multicultural Health was renamed Office of Health Disparities Reduction (OHD). The new office had a broader mission than the former Center for Multicultural Health, which focused only on racial and ethnic minority health. The OHD continued its commitment to reducing racial and ethnic health disparities, but also looked for opportunities to address health disparities by geography and income. See bill.
With the merger between the Utah Department of Health and the Utah Department of Human Services (DHHS), and thus the creation of the Utah Department of Health and Human Services, the Office of Health Disparities was renamed as Office of Health Equity (OHE). This name better reflects our mission of not just reducing health disparities but also advancing health equity in the State of Utah. The merger will be effective July 1, 2022.
Our mission is to advance health equity and reduce health disparities in Utah.
Our vision is for all people to have a fair opportunity at reaching their highest health potential given that health is crucial for well-being, longevity, and economic and social mobility.
Health Equity is the principle underlying our commitment to reduce and, ultimately, eliminate health disparities by addressing its determinants. Pursuing health equity means striving for the highest possible standard of health for all people and giving special attention to the needs of those communities at greatest risk for health disparities.
Strategic Plan 2021-23
This strategic plan is a blueprint for the Office of Health Equity and reflects our commitment to build upon past successes while moving forward with our mission to advance health equity and reduce health disparities in Utah. This plan supports state and federal public health priorities and aligns with:
- Utah Legislative Mandate for the Office of Health Disparities
- Governor's One Utah Roadmap
- Utah Department of Health mission and vision
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (ELC/OT) health equity priorities
- Office of Minority Health State Partnership Initiative (SPI)
- Healthy People 2030
The revised OHE strategic plan will be made available soon.