What is the Community Health Worker Conference?

It is AHEC’s first statewide meeting of CHWs, allies, partners, and organizations committed to building a network to strengthen the CHW professional workforce throughout Vermont.

Who Should Attend?

Community Health Workers (including cultural brokers, SASH coordinators, care coordinators, outreach and education workers, doulas, peer supports and others).

Conference Keynote Speaker

Denise Octavia Smith, MBA, CHW, PN Executive Director of the National Association of Community Health Workers will be delivering the keynote address virtually. 

Conference Highlights

A special session on CHW sustainable funding and competency based education, an exhibit table to learn more about the Bridges to Health Migrant Farmworker and other CHW Programs, roundtables from CHW organizations in Vermont and national experts on CHW networks and policies.

Featured Talks & Speakers

Denise Octavia Smith is the founding Executive Director of the National Association of Community Health Workers. During the COVID-19 pandemic Denise partnered with global and US organizations to center CHWs’ expertise, racial equity and authentic community-based partnership.

In 2013, Denise partnered with hundreds of CHWs to achieve historic community engagement and enrollment of 30,000 residents into her state’s ACA Health Insurance Marketplace. Her research interests include building trust and relationship, patient and community-level health system governance, health insurance literacy and CHW policy leadership.

Denise Octavia Smith, MBA, CHW, PN

Denise Smith is a Visiting Scholar at the Harvard Medical School Center for Primary Care, an Aspen Institute Healthy Communities Fellow, and a Robert Wood Johnson Culture of Health Leader.

Pricing & Registration

Space is Limited

Deadline for registration is  Noon, Wednesday, November 23, 2022

If the cost for attending is prohibitive and/or special accommodations are needed please email us at CHWconf@svtahec.org

Sponsored by

Agenda for Conference

8:30 9:00 AM

Registration and Breakfast

9:00 – 9:30 AM

Welcome & Introductions

Welcome: Katina Cummings, Southern Vermont Area Health Education Center (AHEC)

Conscience Concept: Donna Toneatti, Abenaki Nation of Missisquoi

World AIDS Day 2022 Commemoration: Kell Arbor, Pride Center of Vermont

9:30 – 10:15 AM

Keynote Address

A Snapshot of the National CHW Landscape: Advocacy, COVID 19 and Workforce Development

Aurora GrantWingate, Member & Partner Engagement Associate, National Association of Community Health Workers (NACHW)

10:15 – 10:50 AM


The Community Health Worker Landscape in Vermont: The Pillars of Building a CHW Infrastructure

VT Community Health Worker Steering Committee & Southern Vermont AHEC

10:50 – 11:05 AM


11:05 AM – 12:15 PM


Community Health Worker Program Exploration*

12:15 – 1:00 PM


1:00 – 1:30 PM

The Promise of Community Health Workers: Cultivating Supportive Work Environments for CHW Success

Shreya Kangovi, MD, Founding Executive Director of the Penn Center for Community Health Workers Ashlee Harris, CHW, Penn Center

1:30 – 2:30 PM

Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Option 1: Governors’ Ballroom

The Power of Community Health Workers: Owning and Sharing our Expertise
Amber Culver
, CHW/CHW Program Manager, North Country Health Consortium (NH)
Ben Hummel, Consultant, Maine Department of Health and Human Services, Board Member of National Association of Community Health Workers (NACHW)

Option 2: Ethan Allen Room

Investing in the Community Health Worker Workforce: Sustainable Financing Strategies
Carl H. Rush, MRP, Community Resources, LLC and Policy Advisor at NACHW
Tara Murphy, Independent Management Consultant, Health Systems Reform

2:30 – 2:45 PM


2:45 – 3:15 PM

Questions, Reflections and Next Steps

3:15 – 3:30 PM

Closing and Evaluation

3:30 – 4:00 PM


Networking and Resource Sharing

4:15 – 5:15 PM


Social Hour with NACHW leadership

Positive Pie (22 State Street)


368 River Street, Suite 145
Springfield, VT 05156

p. 802-885-2126
f. 802-885-2128
e. info@svtahec.org

Open Monday - Friday, 8AM - 4PM.

Media Contacts & Inquiries

Media members may contact Marketing & Communications Manager, Peg Bolgioni during normal business hours.

p. 802.885.2126 x103
e. pbolgioni@svtahec.org

A 501(c)(3) organization serving Addison, Bennington, Rutland, Windham, and Windsor counties in partnership with The University of Vermont Robert Larner, M.D. College of Medicine