Stakeholder Health Recognizes Community Transformation Champions with Dr. Gerald Winslow and Dr. Ruth J. Temple Awards
Recipients Dr. Somava Saha and Ji Im devote lives to improving health in underserved communities.
By Christine Pickering
Stakeholder Health, a national learning collaborative dedicated to advancing just, equitable and effective health care, in June presented its first Dr. Gerald Winslow Award and second Dr. Ruth J. Temple Award to two women serving on the leading edge of health equity and community transformation.
The Winslow Award, which recognizes leaders demonstrating the moral courage and ethical clarity necessary to transform-walk alongside communities on a transformation journey, was presented to Dr. Somava Saha, President and CEO of Well-being and Equity (WE) in the World and Founder and Executive Lead of the 100 Million Healthier Lives initiative. Dr. Gerald Winslow is a Loma Linda University professor who has inspired and guided students and leaders toward moral courage for more than 30 years and serves as Founding Director of the university’s Institute for Health Policy and Leadership and Director Emeritus of its Center for Christian Bioethics.
The Temple Award went to Ji Im, System Senior Director of Community and Population Health for CommonSpirit Health and co-chair of the Community Care Hub workgroup for Partnership to Align Social Care, in recognition of her transformational work advancing health equity. Dr. Temple was the first female African American graduate of Loma Linda University and established the first clinic in southeast Los Angeles in 1918. She dedicated herself to her community, initiating health education programs and serving as the first public health chief for Los Angeles County.
Somava Saha, MD, MS
Both Dr. Winslow and Dr. Saha serve as role models of “theogenerative” practitioners who give their lives over decades to generate life in others, said Gary Gunderson, co-chair of Stakeholder Health. “We need role models, not that we can be like them, but like our very best selves so that we can tend the seed of our spirit in good soil to bear the fruit it can.”
Dr. Winslow, who is recognized as a bioethics thought leader around the world, has published multiple books, including Triage and Justice and Facing Limits, and his articles have appeared in academic journals such as the Western Journal of Medicine, the Journal of Pediatrics, the Hastings Center Report and the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. He has guided and advised health systems, pharmaceutical companies, advisory boards and individuals in making ethical decisions. His reputation for ethical clarity and promoting moral courage is preeminent, suiting him well for this namesake award.
Dr. Saha has generated life through “the children she has healed, the organizations she has vitalized, the data she has made actionable, the policies she has disrupted and made right,” Gunderson said.
Deeply committed to improving the health and wellbeing of underserved people and communities, Dr. Saha founded and led the 100 Million Healthier Lives initiative, a global network reaching more than 500 million people to address boundary-spanning approaches to creating health, well-being and equity. She is also the Executive Lead of the Wellbeing In the Nation (WIN) Network and President and CEO of Well-being and Equity (WE) in the World. Other roles have included Vice President for the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, primary care physician for over 15 years, Vice President for Patient Centered Medical Home Development at Cambridge Health Alliance and leader of a nationally awarded whole system transformation in the Triple Aim of better health, better experience and lower cost.
In 2012, Dr. Saha received the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Young Leader Award for her contributions to improving the health of the nation. With her daughter, Shohini, she also founded Raising Peacemakers, a grassroots, parent-child program that helps children and their families develop the attitudes and skills to make a meaningful difference in the world.
Ji Im, MPH
“Ji radiates Dr. Temple’s creative brilliance and invincible love for community in her work,” said Dr. Dora Barilla, co-chair of Stakeholder Health. “She is relentless in finding innovative ways to build networks of hearts, minds and technology to elevate the needs of underserved community members.”
As System Senior Director of Community and Population Health at CommonSpirit Health, Mrs. Ji Im has been responsible for catalyzing, scaling and sustaining community-centered care models. In this role, her responsibilities include partnering with national, state, and local external and internal stakeholders to integrate and align community health priorities, foster cross-sector collaborations and develop strategic community partnerships addressing the social determinants of health. Mrs. Im also oversees CommonSpirit’s data and analytics platform for social needs and nonclinical data and the Social Innovation Partnership fund to fuel innovation in historically under-recognized and marginalized communities.
In addition to her work at CommonSpirit, Mrs. Im serves as co-chair of the Community Care Hub workgroup for Partnership to Align Social Care, a national action and learning network to co-design a health and social care ecosystem. She also serves on the Pathways Community HUB Institute board and the American Hospital Association’s community and population advisory committee. Mrs. Im received a Catholic Health Association Tomorrow’s Leader award in 2017 and was a 2020 fellow of the American Hospital Association’s Next Generation Leadership program.
Stakeholder Health is a loosely organized learning collaborative of more than 50 health systems and other invested institutions advancing the profound changes needed for just, equitable, and effective healthcare by joining partners at scale. The organization convenes partners at scale to maximize shared learning and impact, applying the lens of their most mature faith, relevant science and a fundamental commitment to anti-racism to everything they do. Stakeholder Health partners are committed to helping each other learn, in real time, what matters most in the achievement of health equity, always in partnership with community. They also share their insights through expansive conversations, published writings and platforms such as podcasts and webinars.