Political Determinants of Health Learning Laboratory Program


This initiative seeks to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable communities by mobilizing elected/appointed officials, and community leaders to advance health equity interventions, programs, and policies in their respective jurisdictions. A selective cohort of policy officials and community leaders will be challenged to create actionable steps toward alleviating disproportionate health outcomes by utilizing the Political Determinants of Health (PDOH) framework. Elected/appointed officials and community members will be better equipped to develop and implement actionable solutions to close the health gap.


Individuals who do not have current affiliations with CBOs and/or appointed/elected officials are still invited to apply. SHLI staff will facilitate partnerships in those instances.

SHLI seeks to partner and support diverse groups in building equitable and sustainable pathways for healthy communities, by providing an opportunity for leaders and community champions to enhance skills in policy and health equity. The training will foster community partnerships between the participating officials and their partnering Community-Based Organizations (CBOs).  This established team will be equipped with tools to examine the PDOH factors influencing their respective local communities. Additionally, each team will develop a health equity initiative or proposal designed to address identified conditions unique to their local populations and communities.

Upon the successful completion of the training by the collaborators, each partnership team will receive a $20,000 grant to implement their proposed health equity initiative utilizing the skills obtained from the Learning Laboratory. This complimentary, empowering partnership training will have semi-monthly, virtual sessions beginning in July 2021, continuing through May 2022; engagement commitments will be approximately eight (8) hours each month.


  • Open to policy officials and community leaders. Can be an appointed/elected official or CBO
  • Must complete a competitive review process facilitated by a nationally recognized selection team.
  • A written application must be submitted to the portal by
    the appointed deadline to be considered for review. The application will be comprised of the applicant’s demographic profile, the partnering organization’s profile, and a synopsis of the health equity initiative.
  • Applications will be supported by a joint letter of commitment
    from the elected/appointed official and the partnering CBO with demonstrated knowledge/experience of the applicant’s efforts towards advancing health equity.

Full application packets are due by June 15, 2021 at 11:59 pm EST.



Tonyka L. McKinney, DrPH, MPH

Postdoctoral Fellow, Political Determinants of Health