IEHP Foundation Board Member Spotlight: Karen Scott

IEHP Foundation Board Vice Chair Karen Scott

Karen Scott is a fearless public servant who has devoted her professional life to improving the health and well-being of the Inland Empire’s youngest residents. 

Scott’s remarkable career in public service spans over four decades in San Bernardino County Human Services. For the past 15 years, she has been the Executive Director of the Children and Families Commission – First 5 San Bernardino (F5SB).

Under her leadership, F5SB promotes and supports coordinated and comprehensive systems of care that enhance children’s health and early development from birth to age five. 

Scott’s passion for the community and extensive experience working across San Bernardino County made her a perfect fit to serve on the IEHP Foundation Board. As Board Vice Chair, she has played an active and critical role in advancing the organization’s mission. Additionally, she chairs the Governance and Executive Search Committees, where she leads the search for the next IEHP Foundation President/CEO. 

Beyond her professional commitments, she is a devoted wife, mother and grandmother who enjoys spending quality time with her family and exploring new destinations with her husband. 

We asked Scott a few questions about serving on the Foundation Board and her vision for improving overall health and wellness for all children in the region.

Q: Why did you join the IEHP Foundation Board?

 A: As a longtime advocate for children, primarily related to improving their overall health and wellness and early childhood development, I joined the IEHP Foundation Board to make a difference, contribute and support efforts that better connect care systems for all kids.  

Q: What is the importance of IEHP establishing this Foundation? And what does it mean for the community you serve? 

A: The services covered by our managed care plans are critical to our success in ensuring (no pun intended) optimal health and quality of life outcomes for kids. Kudos to IEHP for creating this Foundation!  

I believe the IEHP Foundation Board is that perfect nexus between the health plan, the health care providers, the non-profit organizations, the for-profit entities, education and government service providers, the faith-based community, the social advocate community, and our children and families. The Foundation strives to identify innovative solutions that improve health outcomes for a diverse population and communities now and into the future.  

Q: What are some of the strengths/opportunities within the Inland Empire?

A: We have some incredible thought partners and innovative leadership throughout our region, all possessing a passion for addressing the highest quality of life for all residents. The Foundation can tap into this vast resource and accomplish our mission in partnership with the community, not “to,” or “at” the community! That is a strength.

The Foundation is positioned to serve the community in its entirety, beyond traditional health care services and reach the region’s most vulnerable populations, regardless of Medi-Cal membership. That is an opportunity!

Q: What do you feel is the biggest challenge facing the region? 

A: Finding solutions and addressing the factors related to the Social Determinants of Health is our region’s biggest challenge. To improve health outcomes, we must find a way to enhance all other conditions that contribute to the level of health we wish to attain for all. That is a tall order and can only be accomplished through critical analysis, collaborative planning, relationship building and equitable investments. 

Q: What is your favorite place to visit in the IE? (Restaurant, attraction, museum, park, etc.) 

 A: I love Victoria Gardens, especially during the holidays. It is lively and upscale, with wonderful restaurants and a movie theater. Of course, Victoria Gardens is located in Rancho Cucamonga, home of IEHP and the IEHP Foundation.

Q: What does “inspiring and igniting Vibrant Health” mean to you?

A: Inspiring and igniting Vibrant Health means that through my actions, in concert with my Board and staff, I can influence and inspire others by sharing the vision and increasing awareness of the need.

Along with community partners and leaders, we can hold each other up, share, exchange, and otherwise coalesce around collective impact.

Through community individuals and groups, if we truly listen, we can hear what it is and how they wish to experience Vibrant Health. 

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