Health Leadership Program


In 2011 the Meyer Foundation and CompassPoint released their third "Daring to Lead" study, which showed that 67% of the 3,000 nonprofit CEOs surveyed plan on leaving their job within five years.

While this figure is slightly lower than was reported in the previous 2006 study, it still represents a significant projected leadership transition.

While one could debate whether leaders are born or made, what is clear to the MetroWest Health Foundation is that leadership matters. The foundation believes that organizations in MetroWest that are run by strong leaders are better able to demonstrate positive health outcomes, utilize evidence-based best practice models and work collaboratively with other community agencies to achieve their missions.

Program Design

To address the impending leadership void and provide current and emerging leaders with the requisite leadership skills, the foundation created the MetroWest Health Leadership Program in 2005. The six-month knowledge and skill-building program is designed to change the way local health executives, managers and officials think and act as leaders.

Through a curriculum that includes presentations, discussion and practicum work, participants gain a better understanding of their own leadership styles and how they can use their leadership skills to improve health and health care in their communities. Classes are taught by leading experts in their respective fields of knowledge, capitalizing on the rich talents the region has to offer.

Ten individuals comprise each class, which runs from January through June. Topic areas include personal leadership, communication, strategic thinking, negotiation and coalition building. In addition, students participate in a project that seeks to build on classroom work through the creation of a strategic and creative solution to a local health issue.

For more information, contact Rebecca Donham at (508) 879-7625.

How to Apply

Course Outline

Class of 2017

Ellen Adams
Executive Director
Heritage at Framingham

Marykate Bergen
Director of Community Wellness
Hockomock YMCA

Gail Bourassa
Program Director
Bellingham Senior Center

Nanci DaSilva
Assistant Site Director
Wayside Youth & Family Support Network

Kelsey Hampton
Director, Food Pantry & Volunteer Services
Natick Service Council

Lauren Mazzola
Site Director
Advocates Community Counseling

Kelly Quinn
Social Worker
Barbieri Elementary School

Hannah Stohler
Residential Program Manager
Voices Against Violence

Mary Ann Stein
Director, Volunteer Services, Community Outreach & Spiritual Care
UMass Memorial-Marlborough Hospital

Heidi Trainor
Peer Cupport Coordinator
Advocates, Inc.

2017 Faculty

Shani Dowd
Harvard Pilgrim Healthcare Foundation

Brian Mandell, Ph.D.
Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University

Jack McCarthy, DBA
Boston University School of Management

W.W. Sanouri Urpsprung, Ph.D.
Massachusetts Department of Public Health

Tom Wolff, Ph.D.
Tom Wolff Associates

2016 Class Projects

2015 Class Projects

2014 Class Projects


161 Worcester Rd, Ste. 202
Framingham, MA 01701


Phone: (508) 879-7625
Fax: (508) 879-7628

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