Presenter Information


GARE: Advancing Racial Equity, The Role of Government Presenters
Gordon Goodwin

Gordon Goodwin  is the Director for the Government Alliance on Race and Equity Director. Gordon brings significant experience to the new Race Forward working with senior leadership teams to help nonprofit organizations achieve mission and program alignment. His specialties include organizational strategy development, program delivery and impact, and governance and leadership. Gordon has worked for 30 years with and for foundations, community development organizations and public : private sector consortia in metropolitan and rural settings. He has worked extensively with organizations that have formed collaborative efforts to advance their advocacy and public policy objectives—specifically, designing and facilitating working group meetings, trainings, governance discussions and organizational strategic alliances. Gordon’s has contributed to poverty reduction and racial equity public policy efforts with PolicyLink, Northwest Area Foundation, WK Kellogg Foundation, Foundation for the Mid South, CFED and The Aspen Institute. He is based in Saint Paul, MN. He is married, a proud parent of two adult children, a caretaker for two small dogs, and repairs and rides motorcycles in his spare time.

Sarah Lawton

Sarah Lawton is a librarian and community organizer dedicated to transforming public institutions, challenging injustice and inspiring action. She has been involved in movements and campaigns related to racial equity, environmental justice, indigenous rights, advocacy for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence, and amplifying community voices. Most recently, Sarah served as a Neighborhood Library Supervisor for the Madison Public Library, overseeing the construction of a new library using a participatory design process that centered community aspirations and social justice principles. She was a founding member of the City of Madison’s Racial Equity and Social Justice Initiative and has been a national advocate for collaboration between libraries and their local jurisdictions to advance racial equity. Sarah has been a leader within the GARE Libraries working group since it’s formation in 2016 and an active member of the Public Library Association’s Task Force on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice since 2017. Sarah was named a 2019 Mover and Shaker by Library Journal in the Advocate category, and her publications include Reflections on Gender Oppression in Libraries. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Macalester College and her Masters of Library & Information Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she was recognized as the 2020 Graduate of the Last Decade. When she’s not working, Sarah can be found running very slowly with her distracted dog, cooking with her 15 year-old son, listening to stories about college life from her daughter and kayaking the rivers near her home in Madison, Wisconsin with her partner, an Emergency Medicine Physician. 

Health Equity Presenters



Derick Chia is an Epidemiologist at the Ottawa County Department of Public Health where he facilitates the collection, analysis and interpretation of health-related data and events. Prior to his current role, Derick worked as a data manager with a nationwide HIV prevention program in his home country Cameroon and more recently played different roles in supporting public health initiatives in West Michigan. Throughout his professional and personal experiences, Derick believes achieving health equity is heavily reliant on organizational and structural changes, informed by sound quantitative and qualitative data. Derick holds a Bachelor of Science in Earth Sciences from the University of Buea and a Master of Public Health - Epidemiology from Grand Valley State University. Derick is keen on continuously applying his expertise and diverse public health experience to highlight adverse health outcomes and informing appropriate strategies to promote health. Derick currently serves on the Ottawa County Cultural Intelligence Committee (CIC) and on the OCDPH Health Equity Committee.



Jorge Garcia is a Community Health Worker with the Ottawa County Department of Public Health. Jorge is a part of the COVID-19 response team for case investigation, contact tracing and connecting people with community resources. He’s been instrumental in reaching the Hispanic population and helping to address health inequities in Ottawa County. Jorge is pursuing his degree in Computer Information Systems at Davenport. Before working for the county, Jorge was part of the Migrant Outreach Program with InterCare.



Stephanie Goris is a Communicable Disease Nurse at the Ottawa County Department of Public Health where she helps investigate reportable diseases in Ottawa County. Prior to her current role, she was a care manager at a federally qualified health clinic as well as was part of their Migrant Outreach Program. She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Hope College and her Master of Public Health from the Colorado School of Public Health. She is a public health professional blending community health education with clinical health experience to advocate for and work towards healthier, more equitable communities.
wieghmink Kristina Wieghmink is the Public Information Officer at the Ottawa County Department of Public Health (OCDPH). She is an avid communicator and strong leader who is dedicated to promoting health, preventing the spread of diseases and empowering people to achieve healthier outcomes. Kristina’s work involves public and media relations, print and video production, social media management, brand ambassador, marketing and risk communications—particularly for communicable disease outbreaks and environmental hazards. She has degrees in Multi-media Communications, Cultural Anthropology and Master of Education. She has certifications from the CDC for Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication and FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute. She also serves on OCDPH’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee and the National Association of County and City Health Officials Communications Committee to advance health equity in communications.