Staff Profile: A Conversation with Kelly Rand, DrPH

April 11, 2024

Kelly Rand joins HCIF as the Senior Director of Community Health and Engagement. Previously, Kelly spent 11 years at the American Board of Internal Medicine and their Foundation where she helped develop their health equity and diversity, equity, and inclusion work and acted as the foundation’s program officer for their Building Trust and Choosing Wisely grants. Get to know Kelly better in this month’s staff profile.

Describe your role at HCIF.

As the Senior Director, Community Health and Engagement I provide leadership for HCIF’s population health portfolio which includes the regional Health Needs Assessment, the Cities for Better Health Collaborative, the Collaborative Opportunity to Advance Community Health and the Statewide Health Literacy Coalition.

How did you learn about HCIF and what prompted you to start working there?

I’ve worked in the healthcare and public health space in the Philadelphia region for nearly 20 years and I have gotten to work with different people and programs throughout that time. I am currently finishing my fourth year of a DrPH program with a focus on health equity and social justice and this role is an amazing opportunity to put the advancement of my skills and knowledge to work for the community in which I live.

What has been your most rewarding professional experience thus far? What is your proudest accomplishment during your time at HCIF?

My most rewarding professional experience was the opportunity to run the implementation side of Choosing Wisely. When I joined the ABIM Foundation, medical overuse was still spoken about in terms of rationing care and death panels, today low value care is recognized for the negative impacts it has on patients and the high cost to the health care system. The program also provided me opportunities to work with incredible partners.

What excites you most about your position at HCIF?

For the last eleven years I have been working in the national health care space so I am excited to work on improving health and health access for the region in which I live.

What is one of the most important things you have learned while working at HCIF?

As I write this, I have been at HCIF for one month. I have so much more to learn from the people, the partners and the programs. The most important thing I have learned so far is that HCIF is made up of incredibly bright, kind, mission-driven people who are passionate about the work they do.

What are your long-term career goals?

As someone living with complex chronic illness, my goals are to stay healthy enough to work, to share my lived experience as a patient in spaces patients have less voice and to find spaces that learn from and value that experience.

What is a quote that inspires you in your work?

“The hope of a secure and livable world lies with disciplined nonconformists who are dedicated to justice, peace and brotherhood.” The quote comes from Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Strength to Love” speech which in its entirety is deeply inspiring. I also am inspired by the message that to help society and healthcare improve we need to be both innovative and focused on the idea of a system that focuses on all people with equity and compassion. 

What are your interests outside of work?

I enjoy the outdoors and taking walks in the woods with my spouse and my dog. I am an avid reader and participate in two book clubs despite the fact that I should probably be reading for school. I am also an avid learner and find joy in trying and learning new things.

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