2020 CAPH/SNI Annual Conference Speakers

Below were confirmed keynote speakers for the 2020 CAPH/SNI Annual Conference.


Dr. Joy DeGruy holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communication, a Master’s degree in Social Work (MSW), a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology, and a PhD in Social Work Research. Dr. DeGruy is a nationally and internationally renowned researcher and educator. For over two decades, she served as an Assistant Professor at Portland State University’s School of Social Work and now serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of Joy DeGruy Publications Inc. Dr. DeGruy’s research focuses on the intersection of racism, trauma, violence and American chattel slavery. She has over thirty years of practical experience as a professional in the field of social work. She conducts workshops and trainings in the areas of intergenerational/Historical trauma, mental health, social justice, improvement strategies and evidence based model development. Dr. DeGruy has published numerous refereed journal articles and many esteemed leaders have praised the book including Randall Robinson. In addition to her pioneering work in the explanatory theory and book, Dr. DeGruy has developed evidence-based models for working with children, youth, and adults of color and their communities.


Dr. Elissa Epel is a Professor, and Vice-Chair of adult psychology, at UCSF in the Department of Psychiatry.  She studies how chronic stress can impact biological aging, and how behavioral, psychosocial and environmental interventions may buffer stress effects, promote better nutrition, and psychological and physiological resilience, and climate resilience.  During COVID she led a webinar of experts providing strategies on acute psychological first aid and emotional well being for healthcare providers and curated a website of resources that has been widely used by providers and the public. She co-leads the NIH Stress Network and for ten years led the UC obesity research consortium, focused on the study of stress, food addiction, and obesity.   She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine, Co-Chair of the Mind and Life Institute steering council, and President of the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research.  Epel has co-written a book for the public with Nobel Laureate Elizabeth Blackburn, “The Telomere Effect: A revolutionary approach to living younger, longer,” a NYT best seller.


Heather McGhee is an expert in economic and social policy, racial healing, and transformative organizational change. As the former president of the inequality-focused think tank Demos, she drafted legislation, testified before Congress, and became a regular contributor on shows like Meet the Press and Real Time with Bill Maher. She also led Demos’ own racial equity organizational transformation, resulting in a doubling of the organization’s racial diversity and growth across all measures of organizational impact.

Now a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos, McGhee holds a B.A. in American Studies from Yale University and a J.D. from the University of California at Berkeley School of Law. McGhee is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Civic Participation, and serves on multiple boards of trustees, including the Rockefeller Brother Fund and Indivisible. Her role as a national thought-leader on addressing racism led to Starbucks founder Howard Schultz asking her to offer guidance and feedback to Starbucks as it develops a training curriculum for its employees in countering racial bias.


Dr. Sunita Mutha is director of Healthforce Center, a professor of clinical medicine and internist at the University of California, San Francisco. With more than 20 years of experience as a physician and health researcher, she brings a deep knowledge of the health care landscape and a passion for preparing leaders to improve health in their communities and beyond. As director of Healthforce Center at UCSF (formerly Center for the Health Professions), Dr. Mutha leads the organization’s efforts to integrate experiential leadership training with workforce research, to ensure more effective health care delivery. Dr. Mutha is also a nationally recognized expert in health workforce training and cultural competence curriculum development. Dr. Mutha graduated from Albany Medical College and completed her residency and chief residency at the University of Pittsburg Medical Center. She also completed a fellowship in the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program at Stanford University.


Dr. Nwando Olayiwola is Chair & Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, where she is also the Founding Director of the Center for Primary Care Innovation and Transformation and Chief of Family Health Services in one of the nation’s largest academic family medicine departments. She also serves as a family physician at OSU’s Outpatient Care East clinic, serving a largely medically underserved patient population. She was recently appointed as the co-Chair of the OSU Medical Center’s Anti-Racism Action Plan Oversight Committee, and has published several articles in Health Affairs and The Lancet.

Dr. Olayiwola previously provided clinical care to underserved patients at the Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital for many years, including the Newcomer’s Program for refugees and asylees in the San Francisco Department of Public Health. Dr. Olayiwola served as an Associate Physician and Clinical Instructor at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) until July 2019.


Dr. Jonathan Ripp is Professor of Medicine, Medical Education and Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Senior Associate Dean for Well-Being and Resilience  and Chief Wellness Officer at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (ISMMS). He received both his undergraduate and medical degrees from Yale University and completed internship and residency in Internal Medicine (IM) at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. In the role of chief wellness officer, Dr. Ripp oversees efforts to assess and provide direction for system- and individual-level interventions designed to improve well-being for all students, residents, fellows and faculty in the Mount Sinai Health System. In addition, Dr. Ripp is the Co-founder and Co-Director of CHARM, the Collaborative for Healing and Renewal in Medicine, an international group of medical educators, academic medical center leaders, experts in burnout research and interventions, and learners all working to promote learner and trainee wellness.


Alan Weil is the Editor-in-Chief of Health Affairs, the nation’s leading health policy journal.  He is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine, and recently completed a term as an appointed member of the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC).  He is a trustee of the Consumer Health Foundation in Washington, DC and directs the Aspen Institute’s Health Strategy Group.  He was the executive director of the National Academy for State Health Policy (NASHP); directed the Urban Institute’s Assessing the New Federalism project; held a cabinet position as executive director of the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, the state’s Medicaid agency; and was assistant general counsel in the Massachusetts Department of Medical Security. Weil earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of California at Berkeley, a master’s degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.