The Wisconsin Partnership Program at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health is seeking nominations to fill a public member vacancy in the category of “community health advocate” on the Oversight and Advisory Committee.

The nine-member Oversight and Advisory Committee (OAC) supports the Wisconsin Partnership Program’s mission to serve the public health needs of Wisconsin and promote health equity by funding initiatives aimed at making Wisconsin a healthier state for all. Additionally, the OAC provides strategic advice in coordination with the Partnership Education and Research Committee and in alignment with the Wisconsin Partnership Program’s 2019-2024 Five-Year Plan (pdf). Since 2004, the OAC has provided over $65 million in awards to organizations throughout the state.

The Wisconsin Partnership Program seeks to achieve a diverse membership on the OAC that is representative of the state’s racial, cultural, geographic and gender diversity. Please see the WPP’s diversity policy for more information. Special consideration is given to ensuring that the OAC collectively comprises a broad spectrum of experiences and perspectives.


OAC members serve four-year terms. Members receive no compensation; however, travel expenses associated with attending meetings are reimbursed.

The successful Oversight and Advisory Committee member will:

  • Contribute to generative discussion
  • Activate and advance strategic planning activities, including contributing to and approving WPP Five-Year Plans
  • Support WPP in development and approval of annual and outcome reports
  • Champion WPP vision and ensure its influence in decision-making processes
  • Ensure effective stewardship of community-academic partner program funds
  • Advise and comment on community-academic partner program expenditures annually
  • Approve annual administrative budgets
  • Assess, rank and approve funding proposals
  • Monitor progress of funded community-academic partner projects
  • Develop policies and procedures for the community-academic partnership funding mechanism as appropriate
  • Serve in an advisory capacity for endowment funds allocated to research and education at WPP
  • Be familiar with and advance the goals of the Wisconsin Partnership Program’s Five Year Plans
  • Adhere to the conflict of interest policy

Specific qualifications

We encourage all interested parties to become familiar with our current 2019-2024 Five Year Plan (pdf) that outlines the vision, mission, values, goals and strategies that guide our work. The Partnership Program seeks candidates who demonstrate the following:

  1. Experience as a community leader
  2. Experience with grant review or application, for example this might be in the arena of philanthropy, government funders or foundations
  3. An appreciation of community-academic partnerships and collaborations
  4. An ability to contribute in the following areas: innovation, health equity, capacity building and leadership, and systems change
  5. Ability to understand and appreciate a stewardship role and the need to balance various constituency interests
  6. Ability to devote the time necessary to fulfill board responsibilities, including preparing for and attending OAC and other relevant meetings

Nominations are due October 1, 2019.

Individuals may submit nominations by emailing a letter and CV or resume to Eileen Smith, Wisconsin Partnership Program Assistant Dean and Director, at The letter should address the following questions:

  1. Please briefly describe / list your experiences that speak to a leadership role you have held in the development of a community initiative that has improved community health.
  2. Please share experiences you may have had with grant review or application, for example this might be in the arena of philanthropy, government funders or foundations.
  3. Please briefly describe your experience working with diverse communities.
  4. Please briefly articulate the value you see in communities workings together with academics.
  5. Please share some of your vision for the impact that WPP investments can have in improving the health of Wisconsin communities. 
  6. Oversight and Advisory Committee meetings occur 10 months of each year (typically in Madison) and generally last one to three hours (with one annual meeting lasting five hours). Please address your ability to devote the time necessary to fulfill board responsibilities, including attending in-person and preparing for meetings.

Please note that the OAC cannot entertain nominations that would present a conflict of interest; therefore, individuals who represent nonprofit organizations that are currently funded or will seek future funding from the Partnership Program should not seek nomination.

A nominating committee will screen applications and identify candidates to interview. Interviews will be conducted on the UW-Madison campus. If the interview is held at UW-Madison, candidates will be reimbursed for mileage if traveling from outside of the Madison area. The standard interview will consist of questions prepared in advance by the Nominating Subcommittee. Additional questions may be asked as a result of the candidate’s responses to the standard interview questions. Interviews will last approximately 30-40 minutes, dependent upon length of candidate responses and time for questions from candidates.

The selected nomination will be presented to the UW System Board of Regents, which is responsible for the appointment, in December 2019.

About the Wisconsin Partnership Program

The Wisconsin Partnership Program is an endowed funder within the UW-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health, created in 2004 by a substantial investment of resources from Blue Cross Blue Shield United of Wisconsin. We invest in research, education and community partnerships to solve complex health challenges from the cellular to the clinical to the community level. Our innovative approach combines the tools of academic research and science with community knowledge, experience and input to solve problems. Our grantees and partnerships are strengthening the foundations for health in the lab, in the classroom and in communities across the state.