National Advisory Committee
The members of our National Advisory Committee are experts in their fields who advise the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation both on the selection and the monitoring of LFP projects.
Mary Vallier-Kaplan (Chairperson) is Interim President at the Endowment for Health in Concord, NH. Her responsibilities include daily operations, grantmaking, communication and strategic development. Kaplan brings more than 25 years of expertise in public and community health issues including community collaboration, population-based health statistics, community health centers, hospice and philanthropy. She provides foundation leadership to build the capacity of New Hampshire’s nonprofit community and public health system. Kaplan graduated from the University of Michigan, School of Public Health and holds a Master’s of Health Services Administration degree.
Steven Adelsheim, M.D., is Professor of Psychiatry, Family/Community Medicine, and Pediatrics at the University of New Mexico in Alburquerque, NM. He serves as a consultant to the New Mexico Behavioral Health Purchasing Collaborative and is the former director of School Mental Health Programs for the New Mexico Department of Health. Previously he worked with the National Indian Youth Leadership Project, Inc. on a project that received a Local Funding Partnerships matching grant in 2004. Adelsheim received the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry’s Irving Phillips Award for significant contributions to the prevention of mental illnesses in children and adolescents. He holds a B.A. from Harvard College and an M.D. from University of Cincinnati College of Medicine.
Matthew C. Barnes is Executive Director at Families Empowered in Houston, TX. Previously he served as a Grants Officer at the Houston Endowment where he managed the Health and Human Services Portfolio and developed new grantmaking opportunities such as a strategy specific to vulnerable urban boys. Earlier he worked as Director of Community-Based Initiatives and Director of Ambulatory Services at Texas Children’s Hospital. Barnes also consulted for Houston Communities in Schools, the Mayor’s Public Health Task Force and the Greater Houston Partnership Public Health Task Force. He received his B.S. at Truman State University and his Master’s in Healthcare Administration from the University of Minnesota.
Fernando Chang-Muy, J.D. teaches refugee law and policy as the Thomas O’Boyle Lecturer in Law at the University of Pennsylvania School of Law. He also lectures on immigration and on organizational effectiveness at the Graduate School of Social Policy and Practice. Formerly Chang-Muy was a program officer at The Philadelphia Foundation. He also directed two collaboratives of funders focused on immigrant services: the Emma Lazarus Collaborative and Hispanics in Philanthropy. Chang-Muy was the founding director of the Liberty Center for Survivors of Torture, served as legal officer with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and as the human rights officer for the World Health Organization’s Global Program on AIDS. He earned a bachelor's at Loyola, a master's at Georgetown, a juris doctorate at Antioch, and completed Harvard Law School's Negotiation Project.
Reverend Micheal Elliott is President and CEO of Union Mission, Inc. in Savannah, GA, an organization working to end homelessness by providing housing and services to 1,000 people every day. Previously in Louisville, KY, Elliott was the executive director of the Coalition for the Homeless and the Pastor/Director of the Jefferson Street Baptist Chapel. He developed the J.C. Lewis Health Center to care for homeless individuals who have been discharged from the hospital but are still too sick for a shelter or the streets. Union Mission received a Local Funding Partnerships matching grant for the health center in 1999. Elliott has won numerous awards and was named a Robert Wood Johnson Community Heath Leader. He is a graduate of Georgia Southern University and received a Master of Divinity degree and a Master of Social Work from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
José L. González is the Director of the Office of Minority and Multicultural Health at the Minnesota Department of Health in Saint Paul, MN. Formerly a program officer for the Archibald Bush Foundation, he also worked as a programs analyst for the Minneapolis Department of Health and Family Support, coordinating the department’s Youth Violence Prevention Project. González served as co-chair of the Grantmakers Concerned with Immigrants and Refugees Board of Directors, as a member of the Minnesota Council of Foundations Board of Directors, and a member of the Upper Midwest Funders Collaborative with Hispanics in Philanthropy. González received both a bachelor’s degree and a Master’s in Social Work from the University of Minnesota.
Annette Green is a consultant with the Pittsburgh Foundation where she was formerly Senior Program Officer in the area of Health and Special Needs Populations. Green managed grantmaking programs related to the foundation's Targeted Areas for Impact "Reducing Disparities in Health Outcomes" and "Supporting Families, Children and Youth." Previously, she served as Deputy Director for Drug and Alcohol Programs in the precursor to the current Allegheny County Department of Human Services, Office of Behavioral Health. Green also directed a number of federal and state grants. She has served on the Board of Directors for Allegheny Health Choices and Tobacco Free Allegheny. Green holds the degree of Master of Social Work from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Social Work.
Gregory Hall is the Director of Program Quality and Effectiveness at The California Endowment where he is responsible for ensuring programmatic alignment, integration, and impact across the foundation’s local and statewide initiatives. Prior to that, Hall was responsible for overseeing The Endowment’s San Diego regional office. In that role, he managed a team of program staff and developed grants to assist underserved communities in San Diego, Orange and Imperial counties. Formerly, Hall served as a program officer at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. He sits on the board of directors of Grantmakers in Aging, and previously served on the board of San Diego Grantmakers. Hall holds a bachelor’s degree from New College in Sarasota, FL and a master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania.
Necole S. Irvin, J.D. is the Grant Officer – Health, at the Houston Endowment. Previously she served as Program Officer at the Foundation for the Mid South in Jackson, MS where her portfolio included wealth building and health and wellness. Prior to that she worked for five years in Washington, DC where she was the Government Relations Director of an international medical membership association. Her legal experience focused on health, the environment, and civil rights including legal staff work in private law practices and policy work on domestic and international human rights. She also served in the U.S. Peace Corps in North Africa. Irvin received a B.A. degree from Emory University and her M.P.H. and J.D. degrees from Tulane University.
Namratha Kandula, M.D., is Assistant Professor of Medicine at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, IL. She is a general internist with advanced training in epidemiology, public health, and health services research. Kandula was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar at the University of Chicago and a recipient of a Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. She is also a graduate of the Community Leadership Program run by the Leadership Center for Asian Pacific Americans. Her publications have appeared in many multi-disciplinary peer-reviewed journals. Kandula received her B.A. at Bryn Mawr College and both her Doctor of Medicine and Master of Public Health degrees from Tufts University School of Medicine.
Martha Ryan is founder and Executive Director of the Homeless Prenatal Program in San Francisco, CA. Today the program offers 1,800 women a year access to health care, emergency shelter, domestic violence programs and substance abuse treatment. In 1992 when the program was first awarded an RWJF Local Funding Partnerships grant, Ryan was a nurse practitioner serving approximately 80 women. Early in her career, Ryan worked in Africa—initially in the Peace Corps and then as a nurse on medical missions. She earned a B.A. and a nursing degree at the University of San Francisco and her Master’s in Public Health at the University of California, Berkeley.