Health Equity Champion Profile: Interview with Estelle B. Richman
Estelle B. Richman joined the Philadelphia Health Partnership (PHP) board in 2013 and was elected board chair in 2016. She brings decades of public service experience to her role at the foundation, where she is a passionate leader of PHP’s mission to improve the health and well-being of underserved people by advancing health equity and addressing social determinants of health through the integration and coordination of care and services in Philadelphia County. Ms. Richman is a national expert on issues of children’s services and behavioral health. She has extensive public policy, advocacy, systems change, and public and nonprofit sector knowledge and experience. During her tenure as PHP board chair, Ms. Richman has played a key role in supporting the foundation’s transition from First Hospital Foundation to Philadelphia Health Partnership and developing our refined mission and strategic agenda.
Ms. Richman is former Senior Advisor to the Secretary for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), where she was responsible for oversight and management of the intersection between housing and social services. Prior to this position, Ms. Richman served as HUD’s Acting Deputy Secretary and Chief Operating Officer. Ms. Richman joined HUD from the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare where she served as Secretary of Public Welfare for seven years. She has held numerous leadership positions for the City of Philadelphia, including serving as Chair of the School Reform Commission, Managing Director, Director of Social Services, Commissioner of Public Health, and Deputy Commissioner for Mental Health, Mental Retardation, and Substance Abuse Services. Read the following interview to learn more about Ms. Richman’s perspective on the critical importance of championing the integration of care and services, elevating community voice and leadership, and investing in early childhood health and development.
Finally, what is a fun fact that you would like to share with PHP readers?
I am addicted to computer games and tend to be very good at them. My favorite games were and are Tetris, Angry Birds, and currently Candy Crush. I also spend time on Sudoko and crossword puzzles. My rational for playing these games is that they require concentration and help clear my mind at night so that I start everyday anew!