Brenda Shipley, MA
Health Disparities Institute
University of Connecticut
“Leadership is the courage to catalyze change.”
Prior to Brenda Shipley’s work in health advocacy and social justice, she held senior leadership positions in business development and operations for early stage healthcare technology companies and the health insurance industry. While working at the Office of the Healthcare Advocate, she helped develop a framework for health policy action, creating guiding principles, policy analysis tools, and briefings on health-related legislation.
Shipley received her bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Connecticut and master’s degree in health advocacy from Sarah Lawrence College. Currently she serves as the project director for the Health Disparities Institute (HDI). In her work she develops opportunities with university, agency, and health equity stakeholders to create collaborative partnerships in service to community that will enhance research and the delivery of care to minority and underserved populations in the state of Connecticut.
Many factors have influenced her health advocacy work: personal, political, ethical, and moral. A Dr. Paul Farmer quotation that particularly speaks to her is, “For me, an area of moral clarity is: you’re in front of someone who’s suffering and you have the tools at your disposal to alleviate that suffering or even eradicate it, and you act.”