WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Barbara Roole has been tapped to take charge of the Health Disparities Initiative at the Health and Wellness Trust Fund in Raleigh, leaving her current position as a program officer at the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.
Roole takes her broad focus on social justice and equity at Z. Smith Reynolds to a program focused on a particular kind of social inequity as of March 3.
A growing body of research indicates that African Americans are disproportionately likely to suffer from various cancers, Latinos from diabetes, and Native Americans face higher infant mortality.
The Health and Wellness Trust Fund’s $12.5 million three-year initiative aims to reduce these disparities in minority youth and adults, particularly those linked to obesity and chronic diseases like diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease.
Grants were awarded in 2006 to run through 2009. Grantees include a number of community-based minority organizations, historically black colleges, and several faith-based groups.
Roole will work with grantees on program objectives and evaluation, as well as supervising the development of a tool-kit for work with community partners in addressing health disparities. She also will seek new methods of raising public awareness, she says.
Previously Roole worked in the Orange County Personnel Department and as a social worker in a Miami family reunification program.
She has a Master of Public Administration and a law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.