The Elmina B. Sewall Foundation (EBSF) is pleased to announce that Gabriela Alcalde has been appointed Executive Director and will join the team on August 1, 2019. Gabriela brings over 20 years’ experience as a leader, grantmaker, and scholar working at the intersections of public health, community organizing, advocacy, racial equity and systems change. In her current role as Managing Director for Equity and Health at Richmond Memorial Health Foundation in Virginia, she has developed an equity-driven grantmaking strategy, led policy and advocacy efforts, and worked to center community voice across all Foundation and grantee activities. Prior to her current position, Gabriela served as Vice President of Policy and Programs at the statewide Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, which focused on access to care, place-based grantmaking, and equity-driven systems change. A nationally recognized scholar and leader in public health and health philanthropy, Gabriela has published and presented widely on a host of topics related to public health, health disparities, women’s and reproductive health, intimate partner violence, immigrant justice, and equity in philanthropy.
“Gabriela brings a powerful combination of experience leading and inspiring systems change, amplifying community voices, and working collaboratively to advance more vibrant, healthy, inclusive, and equitable communities. She is the ideal leader to shepherd the Foundation through its next stage of development and impact. We are delighted to welcome her to Maine and to get started on this important work together along with the entire Elmina B. Sewall Foundation community – board, staff, grantees, partners and communities,” said Carol Wishcamper, Chair of the Board of Directors.
Prior to her work in philanthropy, Gabriela served as Founding Executive Director of the Kentucky Health Justice Network, a statewide organization that implemented an intersectional equity approach to engaging communities across the state. Gabriela has worked in the academic, governmental, and nonprofit sectors, developing an approach that recognizes the interrelated, systems-driven and community-centered nature of human and environmental health and wellbeing. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Louisville, a master’s in Public Health from Boston University, and a doctorate in public health from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.
“I am excited to be joining the dedicated team at EBSF and honored to work with the Board as we deepen and more fully integrate equity into the work to improve the health and well-being of people, animals and the environment,” says Dr. Alcalde. “I look forward to us working in relationship with communities and organizations across Maine.”
Gabriela has served on many boards, including the Louisville Metro Board of Health, the Kentucky Foundation for Women, and as President of the Hispanic/Latino Coalition of Louisville. She was a Fellow of the Terrance Keenan Institute for Emerging Leaders in Health Philanthropy in 2014, and later served on the faculty for the Institute.
A native of Lima, Peru, Gabriela emigrated to the U.S. as a child with her family, and after living throughout the South for much of her adult life, she will relocate to Maine this summer with her husband, two sons, two dogs and a cat. Her family enjoys rock climbing and hiking together, and all look forward to experiencing Maine’s natural beauty and recreational opportunities.