Creating Change Through Leadership: Two Extraordinary Leaders, a Mother and Daughter, Share Their Experiences Promoting Racial Equity


November 1, 2018 • Webinar

This is the final segment of Trust for America’s Health’s 4-part web forum series: Taking Action to Promote Health Equity—Using the Lessons from Cutting-Edge Practices to Improve Health and Well Being.

Leadership is an essential ingredient in making lasting change to advance equity and population health. The last web forum in our series will feature two nationally known leaders discussing the connection between racism and health inequity and sharing insights about engaging all members of a community—including your own organization—in the common purpose of a just society with equitable opportunity.

The web forum speakers are Dr. Gail Christopher, the chair of the Board of Directors of Trust for America’s Health, and a longtime leader in philanthropy and the movement to eliminate discriminatory barriers to progress; and her daughter, Heather McGhee, the immediate past president and now a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos and a frequent national media contributor.

For the first time in a national forum, these two inspiring leaders will discuss how change is created at the individual, community, organizational and systems levels. They will offer concrete examples of how leaders can experience “inside out change” in order to be effective equity leaders. They will also focus on our nation’s unfinished work toward racial equity and the need to change the narrative and beliefs that fuel inequities. In addition, Dr. Christopher will discuss the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation initiative and Ms. McGhee will share insights about Demos’ internal Racial Equity Organizational Transformation process, what she’s learned from her friendship with a now-reformed racist C-SPAN caller, as well as Demos’ new research on how to talk about race and class.

This event is recommended for anyone working in public health, advocacy, community-based systems, education, faith-based organizations, hospitals/health systems, insurers, local and state health officials, and housing.


  • Heather C. McGhee, JD
    Heather is the author of The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together, from One World, an imprint of Random House.
  • Dr. Gail C. Christopher
    Dr. Gail Christopher is the Executive Director of the National Collaborative for Health Equity and a Senior Scholar with George Mason University, Center for Well-Being. In addition, Dr. Christopher is president and founder of Ntianu Center for Healing and Nature.


  • Dr. J. Nadine Gracia
    Dr. J. Nadine Gracia is Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at TFAH, where she works in partnership with the president and CEO to develop and implement strategic policy priorities, and manages TFAH’s core business functions and internal operations.