The Community Health Roundtable was formed in 2015 to provide a consistent community-based perspective about how the health and well being of people in Springfield and Sangamon County could be continuously assessed and improved.
The impetus for the Roundtable came from two related community efforts. One was the publication of “Sangamon Success”, a document produced by the executive council of a local Continuum of Learning group. Sangamon Success consisted of 25 evidence-based recommendations about improving the education of children in Sangamon County. The second was the creation, by Memorial Medical Center, HSHS St. Johns Hospital, and the Sangamon County Department of Public Health, of the 2015 Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA). Each hospital and the Public Health Department used the CHNA's results to identify their priorities for improving the health of the community.
Participants in both processes recognized the importance of grass roots community involvement and leadership in identifying ways to improve the health and well being of Sangamon County and Springfield residents. After discussions among people involved in both processes, a diverse group of a dozen community leaders came together, developed a mission and vision, and set out to learn about conditions in our community that determine how healthy we all are.
Since 2015, the Roundtable has met monthly to assess our community’s health. We identified the importance of housing conditions to the health and well-being of our community’s children as our initial focus in our first three years of work. This topic is the subject of a short informational video and of a report entitled “Better Housing for Healthier Children”, both produced in 2018. In addition, in 2018 and 2019 we identified education and racial segregation as important additional determinants of health in our community and began our study of those issues as well.
The Community Health Roundtable will champion community understanding of the factors underlying good health so that action to improve them becomes expected and habitual.
Sangamon County citizens and leaders continuously assess and strive to create the behavioral, clinical, physical, and socioeconomic conditions that allow people to achieve optimal health and well-being.
Original Roundtable Members:
JIM BIRGE, Manager, Sangamon County Farm Bureau
JODIE BROOKS, Community Outreach, Illinois Grain and Feed Association
SHELIA BOOZER, Director of Teaching and Learning, Springfield Schools District 186
KATIE DAVISON, Director, Innovate Springfield, UIS
CINDY DENBY, President, King’s Daughters; CEO, Big Brothers Big Sisters
CHRIS HEMBROUGH, President and CEO, Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce
JOHN KELKER, President and Chief Professional Officer, United Way of Central Illinois
POLLY POSKIN, President, Harvard Park Neighborhood Association
DAVID RACINE, Executive Director, Center for State Policy and Leadership, UIS
DON ROSS, President, Frontiers International
GAIL SIMPSON, Former Alderwoman, Springfield City Council
DAVE STEWARD, Professor, Internal Medicine, SIU School of Medicine
JOHN STREMSTERFER, President and CEO, Community Foundation of the Land of Lincoln
ROBERT WESLEY, SIU School of Medicine
The following people have participated in the Roundtable's work on Healthy Housing:
PAULA GRAMLEY, BECKY GABANY, Memorial Medical Center
KIM LUZ, MEGAN WILLIAMS, HSHS St. John’s Hospital
TIM ROWLES, The Springfield Project
CAROLYN POINTER, T.J.ALBERS SIU SOM Office of Population Science and Policy
CAROL KNEEDLER, Inner City Older Neighborhoods
PAM SPOOR, Local Landlord
ROY WILLIAMS, Faith Coalition for the Common Good
ERIC LINSON, PATRICE JONES, SIU School of Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine