Mar 01, 2019 8:00 AM


Members of the HCI Community Advisory Board attend the October 2018 meeting
Members of HCI's Community Advisory Board present at the October 2018 meeting

In summer 2018, Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) established a Community Advisory Board (CAB) to increase community outreach and engagement and address health disparities through collaboration. The 38 CAB members represent government organizations, safety-net health care and health systems, comprehensive cancer programs, community organizations focused on the underserved, business and religious leaders, elected officials, and cancer patients, caregivers, and survivors. The CAB brings HCI's many longstanding partnerships across Utah and the five-state Mountain West region into a dedicated advisory body. 

CAB members pose for a photo
Members of HCI's CAB set working group priorities to increase collaboration.

"We have assembled an extraordinary group, characterized by its diversity and interest in serving Utahns from all walks of life," says David W. Wetter, PhD, HCI's senior director of community outreach and engagement. "Each member was selected for their leadership role, unique perspective, and willingness to represent the needs of their communities."

Through four established working groups—Advocacy and Business Relations, Comprehensive Cancer, Health Equity, and Health Systems—CAB members and HCI leaders collaborate to improve health behaviors and outcomes through community engagement and research. CAB members advocate for the needs of their communities and act as HCI ambassadors, disseminating information about HCI services and resources. Their feedback and guidance is vital to HCI's role of providing world-class cancer research, care, and education to every resident in the Mountain West.

mary beckerle stands in front of a crowded auditorium
Mary Beckerle, PhD, thanks CAB members for their work as HCI ambassadors

"This dynamic forum will allow HCI to receive strategic and inclusive community input regarding local and regional factors that impact HCI's mission," says Mary Beckerle, PhD, CEO of HCI. "The CAB allows us to work together toward improving cancer outcomes for all, especially those that have historically been disproportionately impacted by cancer."

Emma E. Houston, director of diversity and inclusion in the Salt Lake County Mayor's Office, says, "The Community Advisory Board reflects HCI's longstanding commitment to the community. Working together and engaging in opportunities to build trust and improve community health is paramount. As a breast cancer survivor, I am honored to work with HCI to eradicate cancer through sustainable collaboration. It takes all of us."

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